The Study Print

by Doris Watts

The morning’s lesson, after hymns were sung,
was all about how we must not tell lies,
or worship idols, steal, or covet wives.
And even though we all were still quite young
the teacher said, God meant we should obey.
The picture that she used to emphasize
her point — a snowy winter scene, night skies
above a pack of wolves that chased a sleigh.

The driver used his whip, grown people cried,
and children tumbled from the back and sides.
She said the only way to outrun wolves
was lighten up the load the horses pulled,
but then assured us that, with little doubt
she thought, they only threw bad children out.

Doris Watts lives in Temecula, California. Her poems have appeared in Mezzo Cammin, The Formalist (she was twice a finalist in the Howard Nemerov Sonnet competition), Blue Unicorn, and The Lyric.  She is a graduate of the University of Redlands and has a Special Major Master’s Degree in Technical Communication from San Diego State University.
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Published 16 March 2010