A Poem Regarding My Absence at a Book Challenge Hearing

There was a book challenge hearing last night in  my district.  The book, Feed by MT Anderson, was the challenged book.  I read the book last year on the recommendation of a workshop presenter.  Not my cup of tea but I can see how the book could resonate with teenagers, especially boys.  The book had been at all but one middle school library as well as the high school libraries.  The challenge came from a middle school parent.  I did not go to the hearing.  I am now sorry that I did not attend.  I do not know that it would have changed the outcome.  I was told that I would not be able to testify because I was elementary and the book was not in the elementary level.  But I should have been there supporting a colleague and I was not.

In the spirit of National Poetry Month:

This is Just to Say

I did not attend
the book challenge meeting
which you probably
were wanting the support
from colleagues
and which the
audience was void.
It would have been great
people present
who understand
the need
to have books
available
that engage
readers in higher level
thinking skills
despite
the language
which can be heard
via a variety
of media formats;
despite the notion
that we may come
to live in a dystopia
one day
instead of a
utopia

Forgive me
I promise
the next time
(and hopefully there
will not be a next time)
you will look out into the
audience
and
I will be there.

Read. Read it all.
MsMac

4 thoughts on “A Poem Regarding My Absence at a Book Challenge Hearing

  1. *Applause*
    I wonder if any of those opposing the book recognize the irony in censoring a book about the importance of free-thinking. Or maybe that’s the heart of the matter.

  2. I can’t believe the distance that people, especially children, must go through in order to read a particular novel. I can feel you anger and resentment in the fact that all of this unfolded and you were not there to witness it. It’s awful to think that our society has come to the point where we must censor books in order to “protect” our children. What is the point of writing books any more if we have to worry about them being potentially censored or thrown in the back of a closet for fear of a child reading them?

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