from the editor's laptop
welcome readerpoemsessaysshort storiesgalleryportrait of an artistbooksarchivesindex to issuesabout us / submitcurrent issue


Left Behind
by Leny Strobel

in the rapture, people will be left behind. those who have  not accepted jesus christ as personal savior will be left behind when the savior comes. this is what i believed then. and others still believe in the present.
under the Bush administration's No Child Left Behind, testing was ramped up and teachers were required to teach to the test. now we have kids who can ace tests if they know exactly what they are tested on. if you ask them to exercise their creative imagination, they don't know where or how to begin.
election polls are always about who is being left behind by the numbers. everything is about winning and losing. hierarchies and binaries are thus maintained.
she left him behind when she moved to another continent. ever since then she has always longed to return.
i loved the movie Out of Africa. he left her behind. she stayed at the farm and waited for him to return never quite knowing when each time. she wanted more. he wanted none but the freedom to be. i had fantasies about that kind of romance. but the demands of the farm are real. it keeps me grounded.
we used to have season tickets to the SF symphony. i've left that behind. it was a phase when i thought i was keeping my mother's love for classical music alive. but i always felt like a peasant pretending to be what i was not in the midst of the real classical music lovers. are they real? that's beside the point. i still love classical music. sometimes.
i used to be afraid to dance. to move my body in front of others. i've left that behind now. when the Kalinga gongs started, the rhythm got me. in the company of my people, i came home to my sensuous soul. i've been dancing ever since.
beautiful language heals. academic jargon doesn't. so i've left that behind. except for the occasional call of duty. i write and i speak in the melody of the indigenous soul that has never ceased to sing to me. sometimes i still find myself questioning this turn. i didn't choose it. but each step of the way i entered the door that was open. it led me here.

© Leny Strobel


back to toptop | about the author

powered by
2012 Resident Poet

The mist in mystery



The Things We Lost in the Storm

Walking in Los Angeles

This Moviegoer Has Not Been Rated


It Makes Sense (Dedicated to Amy)

Bahrain Re-visited

Left Behind

poems | essays | stories | gallery | portrait of an artist
from the editor's laptop | welcome reader | books | frontispiece
archives | index to issues | readers | about us
| current issue |