dirt on the welcome mat

Tag Archives: college

Colored lights

Wash each head,

Ignite every eye,

Tattoo bodies.

We all reach

For prophecy,

For empathy,

For A stronger beat

To pump our blood.

Like a computer popup with emoticons,

The gray square of space

Around his desk is filled

With a million attention grabbing

Facial quirks

And smirks.

The professor,

A self-proclaimed


Repeatedly clicks

This student’s round face with those

Bright blinking eyes and wildly waving arms

As soon as the class logs in

To serious discussion.

Circling their peer’s massive head

With laser beam glares,

Students try to warn

The excited instructor

Of the virus lurking beneath

His sparkling student’s

Gleaming smile,

But the class files and lecture notes

Have already been hacked

With overriding irrelevance

From an animated,

Obnoxious pop-up


A mockery of thrift,

Money wads are spit

Through the golden straw

Of the university,

Blown with hot air

That drifts freely,

Especially in highly intellectual

Conversations regarding

Cash and paychecks,

Lots of renovating,

Landscaping improvements,

Charging more

For housing, tuition, books,

From the poor

College students

Who can only sit staring

At the giant slobbery cash-wad

Stuck on each classroom’s ceiling.


Like the ghosts of the



And future,

Forgotten family members

From the most obscure branches of my family tree

Play a festive trivia game with me each Christmas season,

Haunting my mind at our family reunion

With unflattering childhood quips and quotes,

Demanding detailed descriptions

About my current college status,

And throwing fact after detailed fact into my

“Why studying to be an English teacher

Is the worst decision of my life” wastebasket.

Waking up the next morning,

Like the famous Ebenezer Scrooge,

I sling open the blinds and breathe a sigh,

Thankful for the gift of family

And a whole year to prepare for their next present.

First Christmas at college and there’s so much to see,

Wreaths, flurried snows and Christmas trees.


Posted exam schedules bring out the Grinch in me,

“Cumulative” is a curse word.

At least in a few days I can leave.


Gift exchange number one with a group of friends,

Eating too much sugar,

Watching cheesy movies,

Wish the night didn’t ever have to end.


Midnight breakfast on Thursday was the first study break,

Sleep-deprived giggle shakes,

Muffins, grits, and pancakes,

Keep my brain awake,

Marshbanks’ food never tasted so great.


The first Friday of December begins exam week,

Unnaturally alert,

Classmates complain their brains hurt,

Some nervously flirt,

My professor wore a t-shirt,

As he passed out religion exam sheets.


On day six in December my professor gave to me

Algebra word problems, 

Evil Scantron columns,

Funny-looking graphs,

“Do your best, class,”

Hopefully I’ll pass

Her test about mathematical theories.


Last-minute laundry on the seventh of the month,

Long flights of stairs,

Awkward heavy basket,

Dirty socks go flying,

Towards scattered dryer sheets,

Don’t drop the clean clothes

In detergent puddles,

Won’t miss this chore any more than algebra.


Western Civ exam at lunch time on Wednesday number two,

Middle Ages’ drama,


Church has a schism,

Monks publish wisdom,

Popes and kings colliding,

Vikings enjoy fighting,

Reformation writing,

All crammed in a three hour test.


Say farewell to the dorm room, I’m trekking back home,

Twenty trips to the car,

And still not all that far

In my packing progress,

Maybe it’s post-exam stress,

Punching in my address

In the GPS,

Two hours from destination,

Find a good radio station,

Homeward bound, blasting music, I sing along.


Pulling into the driveway, I breathe a happy sigh.

Off the crowded highway,

Forgotten exam day,

One month at-home stay,

Break from long class meetings,

Dogs barking greetings,

Unload clothes and shoes,

Catch up on the news,

Eat home-cooked food,

In a relaxed mood,

Feel the Christmas spirit sinking in.


On the first weekend at home, church party to attend,

Sunday school class Christmas,

“College and Career” friends,

Don’t show up gift-less,

Five dollar limit,

No gags or gimmicks,

Major dessert display,

Sprinkles on every tray,

Feeling a stomach ache,

Keep piling on cake,

Going to gain some weight,

Put on the freshman fifteen over Christmas break.


Last minute Christmas shopping, is Black Friday here to stay?

Just need a few things

Hope that Santa brings

Cash in his sack

To pay me back

For gifts I’m buying

For friends, I’m trying

To get a discount,

Save my bank account,

Many crowds I braved,

Think how much I saved,

Didn’t bother to wave

As I left the stores I now owe Christmas fees.

Illusions and illustrations he showers liberally,

Examples are endless and questions encouraged.

New ways of thinking,



Explored creatively in lectures and worksheets.

His explanations flawless,

His audience…less than captivated.

Texting misspelled words beneath the table,

Typing grammar suicides on Facebook walls,

They skip the unchecked homework,

Do a research paper,

And maybe take another class

With Professor Socrates

To get one more decent grade

From a man who thinks too much

Of those who think too little.

Three college girls

Riding along

Singing about,

Talking about Christmas.

Remembering three grandmas,

All at home,

Sitting alone,

Thinking about Christmas,

The first time without him.

Rearranged furniture,

Still feels like he’s there.

Will presents be piled in the chair

He sat in?