Poetry in Motion


First Grade

William Stafford
Purple poster resembling lined paper features a poem titled First Grade by William Stafford in white text. Behind the text, names from the poem appear in large magenta letters.

In the play Amy didn't want to be
anybody; so she managed the curtain.
Sharon wanted to be Amy. But Sam
wouldn't let anybody be anybody else
he said it was wrong. "All right," Steve said,
"I'll be me but I don't like it."
So Amy was Amy, and we didn't have the play.
And Sharon cried.

"First Grade" from The Darkness Around Us Is Deep. Copyright © 1993 by the Estate of William Stafford. Reprinted by arrangement with HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.