Good writing, with a strong point and with life oozing out.

Respect

April 2, 2012

there is one in every class
the ‘I don’t get it’ person
impervious to instruction
immune to reading
shoulders shrugging reflexively
blank stare firmly affixed

approaching to ask
“about the assignment”
inquiring about
Kant’s Categorical Imperative
after a two hour discussion
on the Categorical Imperative
of Kant

frustration masked
deep breath taken
we engage in the ancient struggle
laboring and birthing
a brand-new baby thought

“Like, not stealing?”
(a stifled sigh)
no, bigger
“Like, obeying the law?”
no, bigger
much, much bigger
why not steal?
why obey the law?
it’s gotta be universal
it must be categorical

in the silence,
gears turn

we wait

“Respect?”

yes, ‘respect’
you could build a life on that
change the whole world
build an entire system of ethics
for all of humankind
you could make Kant grin
(in a stoic way, of course)

‘Respect’ is genius!
that will work

“So ‘Respect’?”
yes, yes
“And do the reading, too?”
yes, the reading

we part as fellow students
‘Respect’

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