By Ann Bruno, Upper School English Teacher
Let us gather here in this place
where we played in the dirt,
dug cleats into packed earth,
passed the baton, rounded the bend;
let us gather in the echo
of Sondheim sung in a cool clearing,
of the clean squeak of rubber soles on gym floor,
of secrets whispered on Junebug Mountain.
Let us gather under the same sun that led us
through unfamiliar gates on a street called Hope
to rooms where we found derivatives,
incorporated evidence, mastered the subjunctive,
crafted, hypothesized, dissected,
where our fingers were stained with paint.
Let us gather in the name of candles lit
from someone else’s flame,
in the name of shared sorrow, shared joy,
in the name of friendship
lighting our faces like firepit embers.
Let us gather in the beauty of
pink petals and baby quail,
of clouds shaped like lions and cows;
let us gather in the cadences
of one another’s recited names.
Let us gather so that we might
make room in our hearts
for all that we can’t predict,
for the love of those whom we haven’t yet met.
Let us gather in this fluttering green air,
so that we might have the faith and valor
to go forth into the unknown
with gratitude for having been here together.
Let us gather, this very day,
so that we might begin.