Doggerel for our Times
My friend Ray sent me another clipping,
more on our growth of standardized testing.
Seems now theyre doing it to four-year-olds
Efour million pre-school kids in one mold
that one test sets so, instead of faces,
all get more hierarchical places.
The four-year-olds have their demographic
as we all have ours, all of us unique
subsets fit to one consumerism.
Our marketers know us, our deep notions,
while our schools serve up their information
as if neutral, stripped of all emotion
Esave teachersElove of their elevation.
And standardized tests say its all OK.
No people involved any direct way.
No people Einstead, the repeating fact
of war: there Afghanistan, here Iraq,
where the bin Laden family, and Saddam
were long our allies, and could do no wrong;
and drug wars in Latin America,
for our needs for coke and marijuana.
See all the dictatorships weve propped up
for our elites to have their privileged stuff.
And we? We know no languages, cultures.
The world means but oil and cheap labor
for our consumer never-never-land
where specialist multiple-choice tests can
tell us all we might know about ourselves,
loose ends reduced to none of the above.E/font>