“He says no with his head
but he says yes with his heart
he says yes to what he loves
he says no to the teacher …” 

(Jacques Prévert, The Dunce)

~

one times ten is
five fields of flowers

two times nine is
seven blue skies

three times eight is
one thousand and one Nights

four times seven is
forty rainbows

five times six is
one ocean more

six times five is
two trees under the full Moon

seven times four is
thousands of honeybees

eight times three is
sixty rhymes with glee

and nine times two is
one hundred ways to stay

a child bad at maths
but good at poetry

© Frédéric Georges Martin

~

illustration: The Dunce
(Harold Copping, 1886)

a blackboard
painted with stars and Moon

a stick of chalk
bringing words to Life

snowdrop hunting
as Hope exercise

and a garden in June
beginner’s guide to Eternity

the World is a Copybook
Love is the Lesson

and we are both
Students and Teachers

© Frédéric Georges Martin

He does not go to church.
He has no religion,
but he works in a school
and uses books and pencils.

He sits beside the children of God
then looks deep in their eyes.
They write the words he reads,
he reads the words they write,

and the smile on his face
enlightens their heart,
and the smile in their heart
enlightens his soul,

and I do not doubt
that God the Father
will answer
the Teacher’s Prayer.

© Frédéric Georges Martin