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As I remember Chelsea School

Story ID:6011
Written by:Monte Leon Manka (bio, contact, other stories)
Organization:retired
Story type:Poem
Location:Hemet CA USA
Year:1936
Person:Chelsea Kansas Student
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As I remember Chelsea School

As I remember Chelsea School

As I Remember Chelsea School
(Take off of TV show As I Remember Television)

Down the gravel road, south on past the Chelsea Church
Where we were taught the Golden Rule
Where I spent nine months studying
Was the Chelsea School.

Turned right to the gate
Entered the school grounds
On your right where
The old water pump could be found

The dipper hanging there
On a baling wire hook
Used by all
When a drink was took.

A few more steps ahead
Was a giant covered stoop
The width of the building
Four posts held up the roof

The old door handle
Was once coated brass
But with the thousand hands on it
The brass was long past.

AS you entered
There were hooks on the left and right
To hang your coats, scarves and caps
Where they could be kept out of sight.

In the center of the building
Standing on the floor
Was a giant coal burning stove
For warmth galore.

The old Coal Hod
Was to be filled once a day
To keep the school warm
And chase the cold away.

There were four rows
Of desks bolted to 2 x fours
Facing the stage where the teacher sat
On a creaky wooden floor.

These rows of desks
Would be moved against the wall
To make room for a pie supper
Where fun would be had by all.

In the front two giant black boards
Side by side
With chalk and erasures
On a ledge on the front side

The World Maps that we studied
Were in four rolls of brown
That could be opened
By just a pulling one down.

Above the maps
Was a bundle of willow switches
To be used by the teacher
If you were bad, to spank your britches.

In the back placed in the corner
Was a giant blue barrel
It held floor sweep compound
For the teacher to sweep up after school.

In the opposite corner was a
Three gallon fire extinguisher
If it was ever checked
I donít remember.

Two small globes of colored water
In a bracket high on the wall
To break in case of fire
Itíd probably do no good at all.

Some Snake Oil Salesman
Sold the school Board
A bunch of garbage
About what the colored chemical would afford.

Three windows
On the west and east
Held open in the spring
By different length of sticks just to catch a breeze

On the outside during lunch and recess
We had three swings
A teeter totter
And not another thing

When I was in the fourth grade
The teacher bought a bat and ball
Used rocks for bases
Learned baseball, after all

In the winter time
We made angels out of snow
Flat on our backs
It was cold doncha know.

Our Teachers bought paper and things
For the class on the teachers pay
I was told it was thirty dollars a month
Amounted to a dollar a day.

Why would you be a teacher?
The parents and school board was not your friend
You put up with kids all day
Iíll bet she thought the nine months would never end.

Those teachers should be commended
For their contribution
To the teaching of Those Kids
In that Chelsea Institution.
Monte L. Manka 5-15-2010