Jonah the Teacher tells Hansel and Gretel

~ Alright everyone, today I’m gonna read Hansel and Gretel.
The children were playing and chatting amongst toys and paper.
Jonah the teacher sat in the center and waved them all in,
with blankets and pillows with colors all over –
~ Come around, everyone; let’s get together for storytime!
It was a protest; he knew there was no foul to be played.
~ We’ll go back to that stuff later; this won’t take long. It’s short but great.
*HaHa! He said “butt!”
Laughter covers the room with sound.
Jonah also thought it was funny, and laughed
*Hey, you don’t get to laugh!
~ Alright, you guys, come join us now, we’re all ready.
The two children joined the circle, but neither sat down.
Instead they stood face to face with Jonah.
Jonah was sitting like the others.
He knew that people were watching,
it was an attempt to trick him into losing his cool.
Nothing is real in intention, of course,
Jonah remains modest and nonviolent the whole time.
~ Sit, sit, the story has such a classical beginning –
*Shut up!
A hush and a giggle and a shift from the kids,
~ Why won’t you join us?
The two look at him and begin to speak loudly –
*You’re stupid.
~ I’m stupid, I know I’m stupid. And that’s okay.
All the other kids began to laugh, and one of the two became angry.
He’s going to throw a punch to my neck, Jonah thinks,
a two hander he foresaw from the one that came at him.
His hands raised high and caught the boy’s arms before landing the blow.
No intention to attack, but only to defend,
and preserve his position of power in class.
*Ahh! Let me go!
Jonah held the boy there for a moment with fear,
A glare from his eyes spoke words without sound.
His face was without a mark of hostility,
A force to match only by his care for the kids.
~ Are you finished? You can go back to your games after I tell you this story, I promise.
He asks and he says. Jonah is a crafty conman, a dazzler and an illusionist –
Not by fame, but by talent.
His charm on the kids is unsettling and magnificent.
He lets go of the one boy, much to the relief of the other,
His close friend and close ally.
He stands there silent and shocked and dazed,
~ Please, you two, sit with us now.
They back away slowly and proceed to some spaces,
not far away but not close
to the others who thought oddly of them.
Everyone could hear the proud voice of Jonah start
the great story of Hansel and Gretel.
~ Once upon a time…
And through time they did go,
Several hundreds of years to a time long ago,
when fantasy and fiction harmonized
with realistic implications – and fear.
But the fear of the witch was lost in the minds of the children.
Most were asleep before the witch welcomed them in,
Before she was nasty and bitter and evil to them both.
In the end the two live and they walk away unscathed,
And that’s when Jonah begins ending the story.
~ …And they lived happily together ever after. The End.
3:00pm. Jonah is saved the trouble of entertaining
these kids, good and bad, for another day, another round.
The kids yell and riot when the clock buzzer rings,
And make a dash in every direction in haste for their bags.
~ Now watch it, you guys!
The two rebels got up and moved casually to their bags,
talking back and forth about the fight they had with Jonah.
They looked back at him…
He looked back at them too…
his eyes never changing from the confident glare of understanding.