Living On Limerick Lane
In the house at the end of the street
Lived a girl with two clumsy left feet
She would dance all day long
Never on time with the song
Since she sang too loud to hear the beat
Tormented always by her big brothers,
She would dance right into her mother’s
bedroom and lock the door,
Then sing and dance some more,
Performing each routine worse than the others
She read books 20 chapters an hour,
Her shelves began to resemble a tower.
If the walls could tell tales
She would read those as well
for she believed that knowledge was power
After some time she accepted defeat,
Stopped the dancing and took a seat,
Learned what life was to live,
Realized she took more than give,
And understood life to be bittersweet.
The parents always called her mature—
She gave thanks, but in truth, wasn’t sure
She’d lost her sense of fun
And she wished she was done
Since life had begun to feel like a bore.
For too long she has lost any passion
Old hobbies are no longer in fashion
She’ll go onwards, they say
She’ll keep going, they pray
They push yet give little compassion
My intimate peerage of some four hundred and fifty students has reached its terminus. It has technically been two months, yet the sun has made one-third of its elliptical orbit since our last day together. For thirteen years we were, and now all that is left to say is that we once were. As we sat in dark rooms behind chipped plastic desks, before we knew anything of the volatile horizon on the other side of our cinder-block nursery, my classmates voted that I, out of the many, was the most likely to take over the world.
I do not see myself a conqueror, as they are so often on the wrong side of history. Nor do I see myself shoulder-to-shoulder with the men who inhale privilege and exhale oppression... all the while playing blind, dumb, and deaf. This world we are in has planted these thoughts as my interpretation of what it means to take over.
I saw no use in watching my own virtual graduation. I sat down at my desk and found the link to a video of some commencement speeches. I chose not to click the little blue line. What could be there that isn’t already in my mind? Life is full of unexpected problems, and we shall persevere; we are coming into the adult world now, and it is not what we expected; it is time for our generation to yield its power onto the world, and it is up to us to determine how that will happen. No high school commencement is complete without a redundant trip to the dictionary, therefore, instead of watching my own graduation, I went to Merriam-Webster.
My superlative, with its domineering connotation, implied to me that my peers had a perception of me which I found uncomfortable. To take over, as an infinitive, has three general interpretations. My inherent idea of the meaning aligns with the third: “to take or make use of under a guise of authority but without actual right.” That is not the way I want to take over the world.
The second meaning, I found more comfortable: “to take to or upon oneself.” The exemplar use of the words put it into terms of assuming responsibility, which I can accept. If anything, as an educated adult, I do feel responsible for the world–at least my corner of it.
I relate the most to the first meaning of taking over, which was the last definition I would have thought of if not for looking at a list of definitions. This meaning is “to serve as a replacement usually for a time only.” In this case, I accept my title. In fact, it is the only title I feel worthy to accept. I do not want to be president...as that position decreases in value alongside the national debt, nor do I want to be remembered for possessing the best seventeen-year-old body, or any other thing in the back section of the yearbook for the class of 2020.
In this life, in this world, I am here to serve as a replacement for a time only. The truth is that we are all of us just temporal replacements, here for a brief minute, waiting for those who will replace us. If this is it, and it is my turn to take over the world, as many have tried and many more will attempt, I would like to let the world know that I only intend to serve you all for a time, and God willing, this blue marble will be made better by it.