‘Was That Normal?!’

What did I do?

(Smack does the bully!)

Why do you cry?

Why do you complain?

Clean your mouth, it’s drooling,

Why don’t you speak?

You make no sense!

Dude, learn from me,

Learn from your classmates
I am sitting next to you,

And you need my help,

As your condition seems worse

Why do you talk slow?

I can’t hear you – speak louder!

You lack confidence,

(Smack again!)

Stop staring me,

Do your work!

“Why me?” (He whines)
Why am I sitting next to you!

You are so annoying,

Stop pestering me for clichés,

Why don’t you get your own pen?

Why do you look into my notebook?

Am I bothering you?

I feel pity for your condition,

I will talk to our teacher for help,

Don’t tell ma’am about me,

don’t worry,


About the poem:

This poem is about bullying, especially bullying of children with mild disability. People often give aid and special attention to such kind of children and parents often send them to normal school hoping to see their child grow like regular children and that he or she doesn’t feel left out. Bullying is something, unlike ragging (in Indian colleges) and hazing (in American colleges), that is covered less since the matter is mostly brushed under the carpet and discussed with hush in order to cover the crime done by juvenile and to avoid media attention.

The poem is an account of how a student, who was bullied himself by others, harrasses his classmate who is much weaker and challenged than him, in order to express his resentment to the seating his teacher has made. The teacher makes this student sit next to a classmate, who requires special care, expecting the student to help him cope with others mentally and emotionally. But the teacher, who never knew about his character fully and out of ignorance, makes this arrangement and shows no sign of concern for both the students. It ends up with the other classmate being bullied and left desolate for help and other assistance.

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