Perspectives: 116/365

Brandi Rooney (Soccer Coach)

I make about $4,000 before taxes
To coach a team for around fourteen weeks,
But they want a year-round coach,
Meaning they don’t want to pay
For the rest of the year.

The girls don’t want a year-round program,
They want to travel, they want to hang out, a
They want to be kids,
Not hopefuls and hangers-on
For the promise of scholarships.
Truth is, there are very few of those given out
Because it takes a lot of talent and even harder work to be offered a college dream.

Sometimes I wonder when I’m coaching,
And the girls are talking about Fortnite
Or the latest gossip making the social media rounds,
If my love of soccer is worth $4,000.
This fight about how good we are as coaches
Takes a lot of responsibility off the girls.
Parents, too… At what cost?…



*This post got lost in the shuffle of a real-life baseball playoff run… Sorry to backtrack…

Perspectives: 169/365

Meg Nichols (Art Teacher)

Whoever is doing this,
Has art down,
She, at least I’m leaning towards a her,
Understands that artists set moods,
That art challenges authority,
Making a mockery of pomposity,
And by just flat out calling shit out.
Choosing mushroom houses for her canvases
Makes sense given the constitution of the compost.

I see clues suggesting it’s one of my students
Who is responsible for the protest pieces,
Little hints the artist is dropping
That suggest who she might be, like that
One of the kids
With sports uniforms and musical instruments
Delivering tampons for charity,
It came out at the end of our school’s
Tampon drive. That’s a sure clue that it’s one of our students.

But what did that piece say about the situation?
Maybe that the whole thing is a mess,
That these kids on the vacuous mushroom house walls
Should be playing, practicing, or
That nothing can hold them back,
That they are more than athletes or musicians, oh
I don’t know, but I’d like to ask her.

Or him?

Perspectives: 168/365

Nicole Shaw (Art Student, Smart Kid)

I buy my stuff with cash.
I go to Maryland to buy it.

I sneak out at night.
It’s there,
With the steam rising
From the mushroom soil,
That I do my work.

Morning brings the art.
Everyone is confused.

Perspectives: 167/365

Riley Parsons (Local Reporter)

I hoped there would be fireworks this summer,
Sonic booms of arguing, effusing of opinion,
Sparkly displays of emotion,
But Taylorville has settled into a nothing of a summer.

I’ve been covering the dog park,
Mutt news as I like to call it,
First Fridays, and a rumor that a Banksy copycat
Is hitting the mushroom houses.

At least there is intrigue there.

Is This Where We’re Going?

From a chapter on fascism…

Never thought I would want
A moral majority to stand up,
But with babies being kidnapped
Under the guise
Of biblical bastardizations and
With the sleight of an extremist’s hand,
One that feels authoritarian and oppressive,
Not protective of a democratic republic,

I feel like the pious
Should weigh in
Before freedom of religion
Means only that
Which the Manhattan Monarch
Deems most suitable to “his” cause,
His creation of a god-like persona.
Would that come as a surprise to moral types?

Or are they stitching uniforms for their youth,
Glued to government television,
Reading the propaganda, and
Praying to the one
Making a mockery of their beliefs,
All that their god stood for
The very ideals that His son died for.
Just sayin’…

Perspectives: 166/365

Summer has a way of
Making things go away.
The beach, the fireworks,
The heat, each conspiring
To make for the best time of year.

This summer for Taylorville proved
The opposite. Everyone settled into
Their away from school
Modes, but
They were secretly scheming,

School begins again tomorrow
With the undercurrent
Of canning coaches,
Pedestaling music, and
Ducking responsibility the normal way of things.

Perspectives: 165/365

Janelle Gibson (Taylorville Athletic Director)

I’m left holding this
My bosses do not have stones
Where’s the leadership

Perspectives: 164/365

Alannah Alvarado (Principal, Taylorville High School)

I hate it when he does that,
Putting me in a place
To speak for him.
I think he should have confronted the parents
Instead of playing this little game of his.

“Yes, sir, I’m right with you.”

“I’m right on it.”

“That’s exactly what I was thinking.”

“Not to worry, sir, I’ll handle it.”

I hate this.