The Specialist Tutor’s Tale, by Helen Kay

I am not a silent poet

For the stressy mum arrested in the playground
the lad who hid in boasts that he was thick
the girl who hid the bruise behind her label
the academic who tore up my report.

For the fitter who whipped his timesheets
home for his wife to fill, for the medic
who fought for years with does and dose
for the guy who drank his way to eloquence.

For the girl who snapped her pens into the bin
when every word she shaped said worthless
and the paedophile who couldn’t hear
the gentle difference of ‘cut’ and ‘cunt’.

For the prisoner, who at 20, wrote a first word
for the refugee who was told he’s just
an ESOL case – a trauma case
for millions made to feel they are the problem.

Our mouths are clogged by codes of privacy.
Our eyes well up with heavy untold tales.
We prop up…

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