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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Reading (01/25/07)

TITLE: The Missing Book
By Venice Kichura


“I need you kids to listen up,”
The teacher warned her class.
“If you don’t pay attention now
Third grade you will not pass.”

“Your homework, due a week from now,
Will be a book review.
You’ll need to start your reading now,
Take notes and follow through.”

“We’re heading down the hall today
To visit Mrs. Lynne.
Our special is The Library.
Tomorrow we’ll have Gym.”

As she lined up her lively class,
And glanced up at the clock
She wished the time was half past three
For out the door she’d walk.

As twenty-seven rowdy kids
Charged through to choose a book,
A woman clapped her hands and stood;
She had a weary look.

“Please settle down and take a seat,
My name is Mrs. Lynne.
“I need to have all eyes on me
And then we can begin.”

“This is a silent, ‘QUIET ZONE’
Where children come to read,
So show me quiet feet and hands
And then we will proceed.”

She pointed out the fiction books
Of stories, all untrue,
Then shared her Dewey Decimals
So they would have a clue.

“Before we browse the shelves,” she said,
“I’ll take your questions now.
Just ask me what you’d like to read---
I’ll show you where and how.”

A boy named Drew shot up his hand
And asked, “Where can I look?
I want some books on magic tricks---
I hope you have a book.”

“In 700s you will find
The books on magic tricks
As well as fun-filled arts and crafts,
We have a motley mix.”

A little girl then raised her hand,
And asked, “Where is a book
Where I can read about the stars?
Please tell me where to look.”

“Good question,” Mrs. Lynne praised her,
“500s you can go
Where you’ll find math and science books;
There’s much to read and know.”

“I want a Harry Potter book”,
A brown-eyed boy yelled out.
In fiction there were shelves of them;
He did not go without.

And being it was Halloween
The kids were thrilled to find
More books on witches, trolls and ghosts
And horrors of the mind.

Then little Peter John popped up
His freckled eager hands
And asked for books that told of God
And ancient Bible lands.

“I’m looking for a Bible, please,
Like Grandma shared with me,
So I can read the story where
The Lord did part the sea.”

But Mrs. Lynne just sighed and said,
“I’m sorry, my young friend,
Don’t think we have one Bible here
For fear it might offend.”

“But here in the 200s shelves;
You’ll find religious stuff
Of every major faith and creed;
I’m sure you’ll find enough.”

At last the kids returned to class
As Mrs. Lynne then smiled,
But thought, I wonder why it is
The children are so wild?

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This article has been read 1094 times
Member Comments
Member Date
cindy yarger02/01/07
Well done. This was a joy to read and then you tossed in a message too! Well titled and a sad tribute to one of country's worst choices.
Delores Baber02/01/07
Very timely and well put.

They kicked God out so the devil dances about.

School's have changed since I was young and your poem points this out in a non-holier than thou manner. Excellent!
Amy Michelle Wiley 02/01/07
Awesome. Well done.
Joanne Sher 02/02/07
Ohh do I LOVE this! Wonderful ending (I am SO encouraged to know that the charter school library my son goes to has bibles in it - you just assume, you know!), and I really had NO idea where this was going. That last stanza is perfect!
Leigh MacKelvey02/02/07
Title was perfect! As a teacher in the public school system, I know this all to well! Wonderful writing and oh, so true!
Valerie Routhieaux02/03/07
I really love this. The message came through loud and clear.
Mariane Holbrook 02/04/07
Right on target! And to think that when I taught public school many years ago, we were encouraged to teach our classes one Psalm a week! No wonder Christians today are mortgaging their homes to pay for Christian school tuition for their children.

Good job!
Pat Guy 02/04/07
Soooooo very true! And so very poignant for today - sad.

A great read.
Marilyn Schnepp 02/05/07
"I wonder why it is, that children are so wild?" Ahhh, your readers know, Ms. Lynne! Great gifted poet here! Terrific poem, terrific message and such an enjoyable read! This was such a welcome relief from the long, heavy, deep, drawn out and...Just let me say I loved it! It was a Joy to read! Kudos! Great job!
Sara Harricharan 02/05/07
Wow. This was neat, but so very true at the same time. You wrote this very well-great job with the book references, I liked the '700's and 500's very fun.
Suzanne R02/05/07
This is very cleverly written - well done! No Bibles in the library, eh? So sad.......
william price02/05/07
I liketh this:)
Excellent title and message delivered in a great poem. God bless.
Sally Hanan02/05/07
A great message in here.
Allison Egley 02/05/07
Oh, this is good. And probably too true at many schools. I am glad that my schools, though public, were very open to Christianity. I think I had the "best of both worlds" so to speak.
Pat Guy 02/05/07
This deserves a second comment because it truly is a work of art. I know I couldn't do this. Kudos to those who can - and you have so very well.
Linda Watson Owen02/06/07
Delightfully written with a poignant, bittersweet message.
Crista Darr02/06/07
Ah, well done! This is a perfect ministry piece. You carry the reader on a lovely ride and then *surprise!* a hard hitting message. Great work.