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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Favoritism (02/28/05)

TITLE: The Day Chuck Went On Trial
By Glenn A. Hascall


The following poem is a piece of fiction designed to show what favoritism can do in a worst case scenario. This is not a personal story, but one that you may identify with if you have ever ridiculed a teacherís pet or if, perhaps, you were one who suffered at the hands of those who were troubled by the attention you received.

We eyed him with suspicion
He played no outdoor games
Different than the rest of us
His look, his size, his name

He didnít seem to care a bit
What it was we all enjoyed
He simply did what he was told
It made us all annoyed

He was always called on
When the answers seemed too hard
Studying was just a part of life
For a boy that held all cards

What made him so special?
Why did Mr. Wilke like him so?
Couldnít he be like the rest of us?
The unnoticed in each row.

We took it all away from him
Weíd show whose rule he shattered
No friends and daily ridicule
To us? What did it matter?

A teacherís pet, the stigma stuck
We joked, ďHeís not a human being,
Some genetically altered cyborg
All knowing but never seeing.Ē

One day someone saw him cry
We laughed at his hard luck
No one even tried to comfort
A teacherís pet named Chuck

At first glance, a rich reward
It seemed Chuck could do no wrong
The comparison drove us crazy
So Chuck never had friends for long

He may have liked attention
But he came to understand
That being the teacherís favorite
Can leave one fried and panned

I wish the past could be undone
After all - Chuck wasnít really flawed
Heís the kind of friend Iíd like today
If not for the day that we played god

He was tried and he was judged
He failed our obscene test
We never fully realized
The pain inflicted by our quest

I know that Iím forgiven
But I still cannot forget
Flowers on granite only ease the pain
Of my silent, private debt.

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This article has been read 1027 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Anna Johnson03/07/05
A beautiful, thought- provoking poem. Nicely done!
Dan Blankenship 03/07/05
[For a boy that held all cards]

I think "that" should be "who". Also that line seemed a little forced. It didn't flow as well as the rest of your lines.

But, overall, a great poem that delivers an amazing lesson.

God Bless.
Dan Blankenship

Jared Norton03/07/05
Nicely done. I really liked the last line where you make reference to granite! deeply poetic! If I may, I suggest that you keep working on your poetic flow. I am not very qualified to speak on the matter, that is just my opinion. I love you in the name of the risen Christ! Keep up the good work!
Dave Wagner03/07/05
Very solid, and well done.I liked the "fried and panned" line - that's a gem.

You didn't need the qualifier at the beginning. Whether it is fictional or not is beside the point - you're right, it is a universal situation that most (or all) have dealt with - that's understood. The qualifier kind of diffuses the poem somewhat before the first line is even read. It would have carried a real wallop if it had been left at just the poem.

In any case, this one is very good. Thanks for posting.
Sally Hanan03/09/05
Great ending, subtly telling it all.
donna robinson03/10/05
It was a lite read until the ending. All I could picture is that Chuck finally couldn't take it and commited suicide thus teh granite and flowers. Then it struck me as heavy, a time for thinking we can' erase the harm we do sometimes. Maybe a good poem for middle school kids...
Dixie Phillips03/11/05
Wow! Sure makes you do a lot of thinking. Great job!