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An Anonymous Worker

"The Teacher's Lament" (karaoke)

"The Teacher's Lament" (sheet music)


Some people say a teacher’s made out of steel;

Her mind can think, but her body can’t feel;

Iron and steel and hickory tea;

Frowns and gripes from 9:00 to 3:00.

 

You teach six full hours, and what do you get?

Another day older and deeper in debt.

You pay your dues in this and that.

Then, for twenty-nine days, your billfold’s flat.

 

I woke one morning; it was cloudy and cool;

I picked up my register and started for school;

I wrote eighty-four names on the homeroom roll,

And the Principal said, “Well, bless my soul.”

 

You teach six full hours, and what do you get?

Cuts and bruises and dirt and sweat.

I got two black eyes and can hardly walk.

When I turned my back, then came the chalk.

 

I got eighty-four kids and forty-two seats;

Sixty are talking, while twenty-four sleep;

I can hardly get ‘em all through the classroom door;

If I don’t watch out, they’ll give me twenty-four more.

 

You teach six full hours to eighty-four brats,

And all of them yelling like dogs and cats.

They’re cutting on the seats and writing on the walls,

Hugging and kissing in the upstairs hall.

 

The last bell rings, and I start for the door;

My head is ringing, and my feet are sore;

I taught six full hours; my day is made,

But I still have three hundred papers to grade.

 

You teach six full hours, and what do you get?

Another day older and deeper in debt.

I’ll go to Saint Peter, but I can’t stay:

I gotta get back to the P.T.A.


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