7th Grade English
I know whose woods these are,
the yellow woods where lives diverge:
They are the forest primeval
we had to memorize in seventh grade
complete with punctuation.
We would walk home together,
Sandy and Sonia and I, reciting:
"This is the forest primeval PERIOD
The murmuring pines and the hemlocks COMMA
Bearded in moss COMMA and in garments green COMMA"
And then that business of their standing there
"like harpers hoar, with beards that rest on their bosoms."
The boys couldn't stop laughing.
A risky poem for twelve-year-olds to learn.
But deep-voiced Mrs. Dorfman had no fear,
brave as Evangeline herself
searching for her Gabriel.
O the lost lands, lost lives, lost lines!
O my beloved
Mrs. Dorfman. I have become you.
And am stopping here with a sigh COMMA
to tell you this.