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By Marilyn Schroeder

Who are my teachers 
now I have left the schoolrooms 
of my youth, now that I am old? 
Poet Mary Oliver with wisdoms – 
her arms open to ponds, flowers, 
creatures lovely and not, her words 
lights to what I must learn – words rich 
with how to spend my life. Friends 
are encyclopedias, not of fact 
and image, but engraved with gifts 
of love, companionship, comfort. 
Books are my teachers, some to coax 
to play or to ponder deeply, others 
to publish truths of human nature, 
truths I missed among my busy days. 
Humble soap bubbles whispering, 
“Pay attention, for we – and you – 
will not last.” What better teacher 
than a sunset, a rosebud, a hawk 
descending suddenly on a tiny sparrow, 
teaching life’s brevity, uncertainty of length. 
Not with words from a lectern, my lessons 
are constructed, but from what my eyes, 
my mind chooses, rapt with my world. 

Marilyn Schroeder, resident of Willow Brook at Delaware Run

“I began writing at fifty – what I call the gift of the second half of my life. It satisfies some deeply felt needs – not only to express myself, but to understand more about the world, to delve into what I actually know that I didn’t know I knew. As a member of the Writers’ Group at Delaware Run, I find support and friendship.  My other passions include reading ( I spent 40 years as a professional librarian)  and enjoying time with my family. I have two fine sons and daughters-in-law and two marvelous grandchildren.”