(CLOSED IN 1994)

              FOUR WALLS AND I
         "How still it is," I heard them say,
         The four bare walls, one August day.
         "It's lonesome here without a sound,
         With just the principal around."
         To make a noise I flicked the switch--
         We heard the radio's shrill pitch,
         It played some music, gave the news.
         Four walls and I still had the blues.
         "Let's try the phonograph," I said.
         That didn't help; things still were dead.
         I tried the tape-recorder too,
         But saw at once that wouldn't do.
         "What shall we do?" I asked the four,
         I've done my best; I can't do more."
         "You've done your best?  You have, it's true,
         Which goes to show it's not just you."
         "It takes six hundred little feet,
         And tender voices young and sweet,
         Who come with eager, willing hearts
         Upon this stage to play their parts."
         "It takes the joking of the staff,
         The janitor with jolly laugh,
         It takes a little scolding too,
         Now do you see, it's not just you?"
         "I hadn't thought of it that way.
         It's surely true just what you say.
         The principal is just a tool
         Without the CHILD, there is no school."
                                   JULIEN J. MEYER
                             Elementary Principal, Benson, MN
         This poem was printed in the Minnesota Journal
         of Education in September 1953

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