Ms. Nelson

I met a group of friends when I
Was right about thirteen:
(For forty years now, we’ve been friends
Through times both bleak and green)

And they were all debate types
So I also went and tried:
My heart just wasn’t in it
I was along for the ride

But as a part of all of this
I had to learn to speak
Up there in front of people
And be subject to critique

Which isn’t easy as a teen
As all of you will know;
But that was what my friends all did
And so, I too would go

Off to Ms. Nelson’s class where we’d
Give speeches we would write:
And learn how to relax and stand
And get over stage fright

And gradually, I got better
And one day I felt at ease;
She’d taught me, through her patience
And by gradual degrees

Just how I could express myself.
It’s funny, in those days:
I thought little about it
In my self-absorbish phase

But years went on, and I was then
At work, called on to speak;
And I was kind of good at it
When I was at my peak

Which is quite strange for someone who
Works as a numbers nerd:
But I could speak quite comfortably
Be understood and heard —

Ms. Nelson I should thank you
You’re still here, and so I can:
You taught me how I could stand up
You helped me
Be
A man

= = = = =

Never Too Late

Is there a person you should’ve thanked, but never had the chance? Is there someone who helped you along the way without even realizing it? Here’s your chance to express your belated gratitude.

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