This is what education is to me.

She went crazy at sixteen, burning young and bright but blue.
Her toes peppered with blisters from wearing heels to school
she was always so much more than you could guess. When she
walked into the shared area you all would look up, glance briefly
at which charade was worn for the day but almost always were
the heels. Lifting her up higher than you, piping hot tea for two.
An accidental promise to make her it on request, always honoured.
Always paint on her face and in the cracks of her fingertips,
she was delicate.  Headstrong and clueless but determined to act
as though she had meant it, from the start. Maybe sometimes it
seemed as though she was lazy with her homework, but she
pushed herself past what she was capable and when she went
home all that was possible was sleep, there was no other option.
Maybe that’s why she sculpted art from found objects, from paper
found on the floor. To take what she could and show that really it
was more than rubbish, more than a case for something useful.
And she was fiercely aggressive.
She would throw punches for a sideways glance, so often on the
defence she shook with panicked fight instinct whilst smiling, teeth
set.  Bright clothes, tall hats, high shoes, all building extensions of
her, making her bigger, more colorful, better to keep the focus from
her eyes. Because when she went home she was alone in a cold house
with the heating run out. There isn’t money for food past the chippy
at lunch, one square meal a day. Not the best fuel for concentration.
She was so fragile but so so angry that even four years later, heavy
and swollen, she takes on more challenges, she agrees to ache for the
rest of her life with part of her ripped apart and running free. She
finds herself finally amongst the colors and the hats and the high
high shoes and she drinks coffee until 2am on regular occasions to
finally work past the things which held her back. Because for so
many people those things are not temporary, they cling silently to you
and the domino effect is catastrophically damaging but no one else can
see. Because some people work silently for years and years to get to the
level of free that others surpass at birth, blue and screaming indignant,
lucky little infant.

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