“The Poet” by Tom Wayman
Poetry 180: A Poem a Day for American High Schools, Hosted by Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2001-2003
Loses his position on worksheet or page in textbook May speak much but makes little sense Cannot give clear verbal instructions Does not understand what he reads Does not understand what he hears Cannot handle “yes-no” questions Has great difficulty interpreting proverbs Has difficulty recalling what he ate for breakfast, etc. Cannot tell a story from a picture Cannot recognize visual absurdities Has difficulty classifying and categorizing objects Has difficulty retaining such things as addition and subtraction facts, or multiplication tables May recognize a word one day and not the next
From In a Small House on the Outskirts of Heaven,
Copyright 1989 Tom Wayman.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of Harbour Publishing. Copyright 1989 by Tom Wayman. For further permissions information, contact Harbour Publishing, P.O. Box 219, Madeira Park, BC V0N 2H0 (Canada), www.harbourpublishing.com.
About the Poet
Tom Wayman was born in 1945 in Hawkesbury, Ontario, a pulp mill town on the Ottawa River. When he was 7 his family moved to Prince Rupert, a fishing and pulp mill town on the B.C. coast just south of the Alaska Panhandle. Wayman's father was a pulp mill chemist. In 1959, the family moved to Vancouver, B.C., where Wayman finished high school, and attended the University of B.C. He graduated in 1966 with a B.A. in Honors English. During his undergraduate years Wayman worked as a journalist on the Vancouver Sun, and on the UBC student newspaper The Ubyssey (of which he was editor-in-chief in 1965-66).
Learn more about Tom Wayman at Canadian Poetry Online