Old Dog – Jonathan Humble

Old Dog

Heart racing as if a mile had been lost,
at odds with the stillness of a newly

emptied room, taking in the failure
of pencils on the floor and books left

on tables. He sees ghosts, hears the
echo of children’s voices, careless and

free now it has gone three, oblivious
of the anguish stalking this classroom;

a place conflicted all day, growing
through the week with doors groaning

at opened windows, reluctant papers
shying away from pens equally

ambivalent about their marking duties.
And why would it be like this, this day

he’d planned for, attended seminars
about, circled in red in his diary;

this last day of all terms?


Jonathan Humble is a teacher in Cumbria. His poetry has appeared in The Big Issue, Ink Sweat & Tears and Obsessed With Pipework Magazine. His short stories for children have been published in The Caterpillar and The Stew Magazine.

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