Today my daughter who is seven years old started to school as usual – she wore a dark blue dress, with a white color – she had on black shoes and wore blue gloves. Her cocker spaniel – whose name is Coot – sat on the front porch, and whined his canine belief in the folly of education, as she waved goodbye, and started off to the hall of learning.
Tonight, we talked about school – she told me about the girl who sits in front of her – the girl with the yellow curls – and the boy across the aisle – who makes funny faces. She told me about her teacher – who has eyes in the back of her head – and about the trees in the school yard – and about the big girl – who doesn’t believe in Santa Claus. We talked about a lot of things – tremendously vital, unimportant things – and then we studied spelling, reading, arithmetic – and then to bed.
She’s back there now – back in the nursery – sound asleep with “Princess Elizabeth” (that’s a doll) cuddled in her right arm.
You guys wouldn’t hurt her, would you? You see, I’m her daddy when her doll is broken – or her finger is cut – or her head gets bumped, I can fix it – but when she starts to school – when she walks across the street – then she’s in your hands.
She’s a nice kid – she can run like a deer, and darts about like a chipmunk – she likes to ride horses and swim, and hike with me on Sunday afternoons.
But I can’t be with her all the time. I have to work, to pay for her clothes and her education.
So please help me look out for her. Please drive slowly past the school and intersection – and please remember that children run from behind parked cars.
Please don’t run over my little girl.
“Reprinted with permission of The Louis Allis Messenger”