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Learner story archives

November 10, 1997

This week, we have a poem written by Thomas Pierce, from Newfoundland. Thomas has been married thirteen years to a wonderful woman whom he says stands behind him no matter what. They have two kids, a twelve-year girl and a nine-year old boy. For years, family and friends encouraged him to submit his writings for publication, but the first time he consented, was when some of his writings were published in A Newfoundland Spell in 1995. After attending an ABE program for two years, he completed level III and will now move on to study business at college.


by Thomas Pierce

When he quit school at age sixteen
to work at the local fish plant
his friends ridiculed him
calling him a slacker
too lazy to learn.

Fifteen years later
when he took leave from work
to return to school
his friends once again ridiculed him
calling him a slacker
too lazy to work.

Six years and two degrees later
his friends call him Boss.

[This poem was taken with permission, from a collection of stories written by students in basic education programs in Newfoundland, entitled A Newfoundland Spell, p. 60.]

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