On being a teacher

As I sit here, confused by their flamboyant confidence,
Their bright independent bravado and devil-may-care,
I have only the memory of such liberty to court and counter
And they view me with the amused regard they would reserve
For the alien grotesqueness of a baboon at the zoo.
A few are cruel and arrogant, others – mere mimics of those
Whose example they dare not ignore.
Most are what I once was – foolish, happy, lucky
And alive.

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