Four chambered,

with some blood,

and some veins,

and a few valves,


I don’t know.

I never paid much attention

as mrs. Israel explained to us, biology.

It wasn’t as interesting as the back of your head

which in turn wasn’t nearly as interesting as the rest of your body.


But it was a classroom

and it’s all I had,

could have,

or i’d have been thrown in detention, for indecency.


She wasn’t explaining what went on in your brain,

although she did tell us what a general brain contained.

Still, I was paralysed

at the thought of reading yours,

or simply at hazarding a guess,

but I digress.


The back of your head, yes.

It had, planted on it (by good genes I suppose) thick black hair

which curled ever so slightly at their ends, at the beginning of your neck.

And it made my four chambered, bloodied, veiny, valved, heart

skip a bloodied beat.

Mrs. Israel had made no mention of such a thing.

It must have been especially for you.

And that creature that flitted about in my abdominal cavity

(it contains the stomach, you know),

that must have been for you too.

Because when you raised your hand,

to answer Mrs. Israel’s question, I could see your long fingers,

and could think of a thousand better places for it to rest,

and that thought made the creature flit around some more,

and that’s when I knew – Mrs. Israel knew nothing.

And if she did, she was keeping it from us, for some reason.

I learned nothing from her about biology or anatomy.

Nothing more valuable than what I learned from staring at the back of your head,

and jotting down the responses of my own anatomy.

It’s like you were playing Operation on me, unknowingly, educating me.


And  I stepped into womanhood,

your thick hair and long fingers guiding me, unwittingly.

And though you cost me nothing but sleep and a few heartbeats,

you were priceless.


What money could have taught me first loves, desires?

What money could have taught me poetry?


I’ve never responded to a prompt before because i’m a bit scared to be honest. But i’m so glad to be doing this for rarasaur whose blog inspires me so much. And if you’ve read it, you’ll understand why!

The prompt for the week is True Cost.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this.


22 thoughts on “Education

  1. Pingback: Prompts for the Promptless – Ep. 7 – True Cost | rarasaur

  2. I sat behind the same girl for my entire elementary education. I got to know Carol Ann’s hair more intimately than my own face. It was the same in every class for 6 years. I’m pretty sure I learned something too. I just can’t remember what 🙂

    • It is the time you stumble on to so many lessons but few can be understood fully. Only in hindsight do you realize the importance of those lessons. I would assume, anyway.

      Thanks for sharing that thought! 🙂

  3. I don’t think I’ve ever read a poem with a digression before so you had my attention right away for your meticulously described examination of the central nervous system reacting under circumstances of certain emotional and visual stimuli but you put it much more poetically than my laboratory language. ‘Operation’ – ha, spoke a thousand words! Very different – well done Nandini.

  4. This is beautiful, exactly my favorite type of poetry. I spent a few minutes trying to figure what type that is exactly, but I have no idea– I just know I like it. The pace, the honesty, the simplicity, the parallel thoughts. Beautifully written! And, thank you, for participating in Prompts for the Promptless! 😀

    • Aww thank you so much! Weirdly enough I don’t understand a lot of poetry. My best friend and I joke that she can understand but can’t write it and the opposite is true for me. I don’t know how I got through my Lit majors! (I do, she personally tutored me on the poetry section)

      Thank YOU. I’d gladly participate in the coming episodes as well! 🙂

      • I’m a poetry fanatic. It combines my love of stories, and my love of the way words flow. Even though I appreciate almost all types of poetry, I’m particular about the types I really “love”… if that makes sense. 🙂 I’m glad you write, and will be ridiculously happy to have you participate again! 😀

  5. I was jumping from line to line till i got to the end and then i read it all over again – for as you say, that creature flitted about in my abdominal cavity! 😀

    Bookmarking you to come back and read more!

  6. Loved it! We’ve all been there. But we didn’t say it that sensitively, that delicately, that insightfully. Very clean lines. You are on the way to becoming a master storyteller.

      • Thanks Brenda! And thank your daughter for reading it too! As for the female twist, i’m not sure what you mean. Do tell! I didn’t imagine my poem to have alternative interpretations! That is exciting 🙂

  7. Pingback: The True Cost of Stress | rarasaur

  8. Pingback: Prompts for the Promptless – Ep. 8 – The Litmus | rarasaur

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