Memory Jigsaw

The powerpoint was perfectly laid out;
She really is a talented teacher.
Too many people disregard the power
Of a well spoken lecture.
Too many people don’t know shit.

It was on the way memory works.
So get this: dopamine is released
When someone is learning.
Dopamine!
Isn’t that the chemical that makes
You happy? Isn’t that the chemical
That is released when you have sex?
Ha. Dopamine.

What if what you learn is terrible?
If dopamine makes you feel good,
What if you learn wrong?
What if the experiences you’re
Taking in release dopamine
At just that moment where you realize
That pain is pleasure and pleasure is pain?
That clowns cry, that freedom requires restriction,
That love requires death, that mothers
Incite wrath, that big brothers don’t really
Protect, that men need to be spooned,
That the happiness of one often requires
The suffering of another, that fiction often
Communicates a truer truth than the facts,
That leaders who don’t want to lead are
Better than the ones who want it so desperately,
That teachers learn more than their students,
That science is mystical, that loyalty requires
Dishonesty, that tragedy creates the best comedy,
That both laughing and crying create tears,
That teenage boys are achingly more sensitive
Than teenage girls, that enlightenment requires
Sacrifice, that friendships are impermanent, that
War and peace often look the same, that diets to lose
Often make one gain, that truth is often paradoxical,

That learning only makes us wonder at all
We have not yet learned.

“290 vilnius Escalators of the Mind”by histogram_man is licensed under CC0 1.0

Laura McDermott

Laura McDermott is an high school English teacher in Bedford, NH. She describes herself as a "nascent poet" but a passionate one. She enjoys culture shock, a fluffy cat at her feet, and dry red wine.

One Comment
  1. Avatar

    Mothers incite wrath. Big brothers don’t protect. Friendships are impermanent. Truth, sister. Truth. I love the development and honesty and insight of this piece. You are a voice that needs to be heard.

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