I am still waiting for the day that we realize that we cannot truly test brilliance

That you cannot shade in enough bubble points to see the inner magic of a human mind 

Children are being told already that their are limits to how they will be seen

I teach, to remind them they are seen 

I teach so that the girl mute from trauma will still smile at me and shake her head 

when she is uncomfortable 

I teach so that they no longer hide in their sweatshirts when they are asked to copy words down in their notebooks 

So that they don't shut down when they are asked to articulate their own ideas 

Here's the thing, you're much smarter than you know 

you've just been told for too long

That you were the opposite 

I am sorry no one saw your brilliance

I am sorry they handed you pencils when you needed to get up and show them how much you knew

I'm sorry that they never saw that the doodles in between your math sheets spelled out ---you're speaking to me in a language I wasn't made to understand 

I teach because maybe they won't remember anything they tested on, but they'll remember the one person who told them, 

You can do this 

And meant it