Two Poems by Gary Beck

Lower Learning

When I was young
I didn’t know enough about government
to have any idea how it worked,
who made it run.
Like many other youths
I accepted at face value
what they taught in school,
which made government seem
a lot better than school
with boring rote learning,
teacher oppression, bullying.
But as I got older
I began to discover
school was the training ground
for all the abusers
that plague our nation
and it may have been constricting,
but it wasn’t chaotic
like the land I love.


The need to rely on others
is a serious burden
made heavier by obligations
to those being tended,
especially the mentally ill,
infirm, aged, no hope of cure,
just the daily effort
of service, care, attention,
a continuous demand
finally resolved
by emancipating death.


Gary Beck spent his life as a theater director. He has 14 published chapbooks, 21 published poetry collections, 4 accepted for publication. He has 6 novels published and 4 accepted for publication, and 3 short story collections published. Also forthcoming is a book of one-act plays. He lives in NYC.

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