Friday, May 21, 2010

A Moth: Darby, Part II


April, 2010

I found Darby's script in our Shakespeare Club cupboard. I turned the pages and studied her scribbles and drawings. She'd sketched a Lady Macbeth and a Queen Elizabeth. I sighed. What to do, what to do?

OPERATION DARBY, Step One



I remember as a child the thrill of seeing a turquoise or red star stuck on a page of my schoolwork. I don't know the history of the sticker thing but it really hasn't lost its luster or ability to inspire, and it's so easy. I opened my book of stickers and next to every one of Darby's speeches I pressed on a cat or a "You did it!" or a "Way to go!" sticker. At the very least, she might want to turn a page, find a sticker and stay current with her cues.


During a lunch break I called her over to our meeting place at the blue metal picnic table. I took a moment and could see she was readying herself for another "talk" or reprimand. What else would she expect?

OPERATION DARBY, Step Two


"So, here's the deal, my sweet. I'm not going to let you get that third x. I'm not going to give you a chance to leave Shakespeare Club. I'm not going to let you quit. Because if you quit now, you will become a quitter and you do not want to be a quitter in middle school or high school or college. You and I are going to make this work and you are going to help the club have 'an awesome show'."

Darby met my eyes and nodded.

"I know how important writing is to you. I know you want to be a writer and that's a great ambition. Because we're getting near our production date and have been busy doing run-throughs, we haven't had time for journal writing and I'm sure you miss that. If you can stay with the play and pick up your cues, we should have enough time on Wednesday to get our writing in. And here, I have a gift for you."


In her hands I placed a "writing muse." A paper cut-out of a lady in a pretty dress with jewels dangling from her hem.

"You can hang this anywhere. A muse is an inspiration for a writer and now you have your own."

"Ms. Ryane, I love it."

"I'm glad."

"And you know what? Things got better at home."

"Really? That's fantastic. How do you account for the change? What do you think happened?"

"I don't know, but they just got better."

"Well, let's thank the universe for that."

Darby threw her arms skyward.

"Thanks, universe!"

Amen.

A Moth: Darby, Part I
She Flutters: Darby, Part III


CHILDREN'S WRITES: A Journal Entry
If I were a Elizabethan Man, I would wear some beeches, a Hat, And A vest. I would comb my mustash comb my hair. I would use the bathroom and throw it outside. And I would be ritch. I would marry Queen Elezabeth.
Oliver, 4th grade

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