A for Apple, B for Ball

Education is not preparation for lifeEducation is life itself

Zola’s Odyssey 

Zola sprints to school, eager to learn
Oh! With so fervent a zeal her peepers burn
Someday she’ll be a woman of immense might
Scuttles to school 8 miles away, she’s the knight

Alas! she trips, breaks her sprint
Tattered books from her old sac spill
The fall may’ve cracked her foot, but for her strong upbringing
Zola trots ahead, shabby anklet jingling

She settles on broken bench
Nails pricking, aware of nasty stench
Gawks at the dripping ceiling, not a single fan
You’d wonder how the derelict building stands

Forget that fancy projector, no board’s in sight
It’s difficult to learn, but Zola tries
She and ten others wait for teacher to arrive
They hear a buzz, “Oh look, a beehive!”

A for apple, B for ball
Zola repeats in her head, “H for hall?”
An hour since, paper balls flying
A boy falls from the tree, “Is he dying?”

Two hours after, Zola’s throat’s sore
Yesterday was the same, so was day before
Teacher never comes to feed hungry souls
Dejected, they return to their dingy holes

Carrying her torn sac, no longer sprinting
Thirst for knowledge, unquenched— still ringing
Dreams hazy; she now hurries— got floors to clean
Mistress is angry if china doesn’t gleam

Sadly, millions of children in India suffer Zola’s fate. The system’s apathy is appalling. Perhaps, the sprinting growth rate has blinded its vision. You tell me, how can India hope to rise without lifting its millions up? Good education is so distant a dream, even decent literacy’s not being imparted.

©All Rights Reserved


24 thoughts on “A for Apple, B for Ball

  1. Sad reality indeed ! India is progressing but how much of it is actually beneficial to the masses is yet to be seen. Education is still not up to the mark. Hope things change sooner ! Wonderful poem, very well written 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So it’s not just Pakistan after all…it’s the same all around the globe. How
    I wish it all becomes a past. I wonder how many great minds are not able to flourish just because they can’t afford quality education.
    Do write more on issues as such, brilliant poem.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. From my readings, I know the problem of low quality education, or no education at all, is widespread in two regions of the world- South Asia and Sub Saharan Africa. As you said, hope it goes away.

      Thank you for the appreciation:)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s the point, the disparity is huge. According to a recent report, in India, out of some 200 working days, only 50 odd days are consumed by any kind of teaching activity. And the quality of teaching that does take place can only be described as pathetic. We’re far from an educational revolution. And they say, “education is out first priority”. Certainly doesn’t seem like it


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s