Accommodations Permanence

Laurence Musgrove pens a poem as the new academic year begins.

September 3, 2021
space-monkey-pics/istock/getty images plus

Did you know the word “normal”

Comes from a carpenter’s square

Which is an artificial depiction

Of the imagined concept we use

To apply a theory of angles upon

Landscapes, materials, and people

We want to own and command?

So, when I get a series of emails

About student accommodations,

And a paper from a woman who

Volunteers her ADHD as reason

For her lousy object permanence

And time management abilities,

I think, this isn’t any “New Normal.”

There’s nothing to square this with,

Except the oldest curriculum we have:

The ready heart and the open mind.


Laurence Musgrove is professor of English at Angelo State University. His latest poetry collection is The Bluebonnet Sutras from Lamar University Literary Press.


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