The Secret to Getting By

The Secret of Getting By ~ Poems by Mamou Academy alumni, West Africa 

If I love you, you will leave me, and I'll have to hear good-by;
If I show you I am homesick you might tease me when I cry;
If I tell you all my secrets you will think that I am lying . . .
So I better shut you out and shut me in.

If my answer isn't right then you will shame and shout at me;
If I question your commandment you will surely punish me;
If I tell you what has happened - I don't know but you won't like me . . .
So I'll have to shut you out and shut me in.

If I run away then maybe you will notice that I'm here;
If I play your games with you then maybe you'll make me your peer;
If I just don't think about it I can get through one more year . . .
So I'm going to shut you out and shut me in.

I will be invisible, be especially good. I'll pretend I'm happy, eat all of my food.
I will keep on waiting for my prince to come
Sneak me down the back hill to the train and home.

Cathi Crooks is an alumni of Mamou Alliance Academy