Small towns are everywhere,
Maybe not in the way they once were,
Suburbia having blended urban and rural,
But the regional lines are still defined
By where the school buses go.
It’s the schools that give these once country spaces
Their identities, their reputations, their senses of worth.
The test scores tell them how smart they are.
The college acceptances tell them how prepared they are.
The news clippings tell them how great they are.
It’s the schools that define the community.
Smart, winners, popular…
The sadness is that it’s not for the kids
Not for what they will become or the truth of their existence
No, it’s about perspective.
How much the homes are worth.
How valuable the education is.
How big, competitive, and popular the community really is.
The schools define that and when things are good,
People still aren’t happy.
The buses roll down long straight streets
Only to get to the turn of the century edge of town
And barrel up an equally long straight hill to the cities center.
Six square streets make the metropolis
A bundle of McMansion neighborhoods makes up the stock filling the schools.
This is the borough of Taylorville
Where the price of the schools is manageable
And the people of the town are nice enough
As long as things are just right and the schools
Maintain the right perspective.