The class watched the face of the professor
with some apprehension
as he was known to be
aggressive in his insistence
on class participation. A favorite pose he struck
once a class period
without fail
One foot on a chair
a hand cupped to his ear
as he listened for signs of life
from the class. An expression of anticipation
like that now passing across his face
was not good news
to those who had not prepared for the lesson
or who
to put it in plain words
had prepared but without being able to catch hold
of much understanding of it
if any. The professor shifted his stance.
The class drew in its collective breath.
The professor’s feet shuffled
but settled in the same plane.
As one the class took up pens
ready to note down
if necessary
every word said
as long as they did not have to say it.


Card project black kings 2-18

Black Kings, Playing Card Project 2018, Claudia McGill/Sharon Mann – work in process

9 thoughts on “Lottery

  1. Yes, some collage classes, I clearly remember fighting sleep. So many classes you had to take that did not interest you. As for the cards, WOW! I would love to hear more about how they worked and so on. A blog post? Pictures? I know I’m going overboard, but you know, I had my deck out a day or so ago and was looking through it and remembering.

  2. The card decks are fun to look at. I see things each time that I didn’t see before. The cards are a bit big and clumsy but still fun to use. I’ll give a blog post some thought.

  3. I’d love to read such a post and I will reblog on my site, too, if you do it. It’s like when I sell art – I love it when people come back another year at the same show and mention they have something of mine and what they are doing with it. The kind of thing you never know when your art goes out into the world.

  4. Ah this poem takes me back to my undergraduate days when I had some truly wretched lecturers. I am sure they knew their stuff but they certainly did not know how to impart either knowledge or enthusiasm for the subject to the students. Some were really truly dire. I like the way the poem is about the action of inaction in a way too. There is a neat tension because of that. It’s been a long day (week) so I may not be articulating my brain’s vague thoughts well but if anyone will tune into what I am trying to explain it will be you.

  5. I know what you mean. There is a balance in this situation that is right on its point. Sometimes wondering if something will happen is more exhausting than dealing with it happening or making it happen. The old waiting thing! And I can think of so many awful professors who were knowledgeable but unable to impart it. I also think of many training seminars at work, too.

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