Dear Readers,

It has been my pleasure to answer some of your questions over the past school year. This month, however, I have decided to change things up with some inspirational musings. As most of us are sharing the same dog days of summer, and the want to go back to work may be waning somewhere in the summer breeze, I thought I would try to inspire you with some poetry. My hope is that this will help us all reflect on how much what we do matters and help us recharge our batteries back to full for the too quickly upcoming school year.

Poem number one is a poem I wrote. I wrote it as a way to give thanks to those who helped me in difficult times, and as I reflected upon it, I realized that it could voice how our students might say thank you to us if they could truly articulate their gratitude towards our efforts on their behalf. It may even represent some other form of thank you that a colleague you helped along the way never took the time to say.

Poem number two is one have come across many times in my career. And it always reminds me that one person can make a difference.

Happy summer! Enjoy, and email me at with your questions!

23 Thank You Salute

Thank you for caring when I could not care enough
Thank you for needing me when I did not need myself
Thank you for asking when I could not ask
Thank you for your criticism when mine did not last
Thank you for your spirit when I did not have enough
Thank you for your love when I dare not love myself
Thank you for your hugs when words were not enough
Thank you for your guidance when I could not guide myself
Thank you for the laughter when I needed it the most
Thank you for the time’s when you trusted me like toast
Thank you for the hope that transcended the dust
Thank you for the joy when my cup had none
Thank you for the energy that spilled over like crashing waves
Thank you for the smiles each and every day
Thank you for the harmony you sent my way
Thank you for the calmness when you choose to stay
Thank you for the chance to do better
Thank you for always providing sunny weather
Thank you for your charm and sweet kindred spirit
Thank you for the chance when chance challenged hatred
Thank you for believing no matter what
Thank you for understanding when the mud drag became a trudge
Thank you for the support beams from which I rose on every day

Starfish Poem
By Dayle Ann Dodds

Once upon a time there was a wise man
who used to go to the ocean
to do his writing.
He had a habit of walking
on the beach
before he began his work.
One day he was walking along
the shore.
As he looked down the beach,
he saw a human
figure moving like a dancer.
He smiled to himself to think
of someone who would
dance to the day.
So he began to walk faster
to catch up.
As he got closer, he saw
that it was a young man
and the young man wasn’t dancing,
but instead he was reaching
down to the shore,
picking up something
and very gently throwing it
into the ocean.
As he got closer he called out,
“Good morning! What are you doing?”
The young man paused,
looked up and replied,
“Throwing starfish in the ocean.”
“I guess I should have asked,
why are you throwing starfish in the ocean?”
“The sun is up and the tide is going out.
And if I don’t throw them in they’ll die.”
“But, young man, don’t you realize that
there are miles and miles of beach
and starfish all along it.
You can’t possibly make a difference!”
The young man listened politely.
Then bent down, picked up another starfish
and threw it into the sea,
past the breaking waves and said-
“It made a difference for that one.”

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