Rhyme and Reason

By Mireya Sánchez-Maes

Read a Book! Write a Rhyme!

School is almost over now
And folks are getting stressed
Staying up till 4am
To cram for all their tests.

I, myself, am not immune
From all this finals sorrow.
I’ve got twenty pages worth
Of writing due tomorrow!

Once we get through May, though,
We can finally take a breath
And do whatever people do
When they’re not worked to death.

Still, before we finish up
And bid the year adieu,
I’ve got one last humble little
Rhyming thought for you.

We’ve talked about diversity
And legacy admissions,
‘Bout toxic masculinity,
And fake poor dispositions.

And sure, there’s still a lot of
Heavy topics to discuss,
And doing it in rhyme, of course,
Is always quite the plus.

But honestly, there’s something else
I think about a lot —
A widespread, sad phenomena
That isn’t hard to spot.

So, for my final article,
I wrote you all a letter.
Inside it, there’s an offering
That I think makes life better.

Dear people who have read this far:
First of all, you rule!
I have a small request for you
Once you get out of school.

We’re all so crazy busy
And we’re always on the run.
Very few of us have time
To sit and read for fun.

But sometime in the coming months
Seek out a quiet nook.
Put aside your iPhone
And instead, pick up a book.

Not something that you have to read,
Not something that’s assigned.
Pick something that is silly
And will entertain your mind.

Do you still like Percy Jackson?
If so, that’s a relief!
Instead of watching Love is Blind,
Re-read “The Lightning Thief.”

Or if you are a romance fan,
Try “Fifty Shades of Grey.”
And if you like a wedding,
As You Like It” is your play.

Into creepy horror?
Edgar Allan Poe’s your guy.
He writes ‘bout death and murder
And a lot of people die!

But maybe you’re one of those folks
Who, when they get to choose,
Will always turn on CNN
Or other nightly news.

If so, you should read Immerwahr!
His newest book is great.
Or else try out a memoir:
Mindy Kaling’s are first rate.

But maybe you’re like,
“Ughhh! I already think in school.
I’m gonna just recharge my brain
With Netflix, if that’s cool.”

Yo man, yeah, I get it.
After finals, my brain’s shot.
So here’s some brainless,
“Just for fun” book recs that I have got.

Redshirts” by John Scalzi,
Fun Home” by Bechdel,
Born a Crime” or “Dracula,”
Or Olen Butler’s “Hell

Graphic novels also rule!
Try out “The Hard Tomorrow
New Kid,” “Maus,” “Persepolis”:
All great ones you should borrow.

Mostly, guys, my point here
Is that life is really tough.
Everything takes so much time
And there’s never enough.

So once you finally get a break
Sit down and try to read.
Books can offer the respite
From work that we all need.

They often increase vocab
And help workout our brain.
Attention spans can increase.
We all have so much to gain!

So yeah, I’ll leave it there for now.
This column has been fun!
Here’s what you should take away
Before I’m truly done.

Rhymes are often thought to be
What only kids enjoy,
But sometimes simple, silly stuff
Can bring the greatest joy!

They’re beautiful. They’re artful.
They add a touch of glee!
And man, the news is glum enough —
Now, wouldn’t you agree?

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Harvard’s Not Diverse. That’s Perverse.

Sup y’all, how’s it going?
I hope you’re doing well,
‘Cause I’m about to shed some light
On Harvard’s personnel.

Think about your teachers.
Now think about your peers.
Notice how diversity,
With age, just disappears?

Anyone who goes to class
Quite easily can see
The white homogeneity
Of tenured faculty.

Read more »

Stop Pretending You’re Poor

Lemme tell a story
You’ve probably heard a lot.
About a needy Harvard kid
Whose family owns a yacht.

Mommy is a lawyer.
Daddy’s got a Ph.D.
They paid for cello lessons
Ever since their kid was three.

His parents own two houses.
They vacation near and far.
And once he learned to drive
Of course, his folks bought him a car.

Now, if you called this student rich,
He’d say that wasn’t true.
Admitting he’s well off, it seems,
Is something he can’t do.

Sure, his family income
Has more digits than your hand,
But if you call him privileged,
he’ll say, “You don’t understand.

My parents aren’t CEO’s
They aren’t billionaires.
I’m simply ‘Harvard middle class.’
I’m not like other heirs!”

If you pushed the matter,
He might then push back and list
All the ways his life was rough
that you seem to have missed.

Sure he went to Europe,
But, like, only once or twice!
He always had to wait to buy
the newest smart device.

Though he went to private school
It wasn’t, like, the best
For only half the students there
Got 5’s on AP tests.

Though he has some money
Surely, other kids have more.
“And that is why,” he says,
“By Harvard standards, I am poor!”

Clearly, you and I can see
Straight through this phony show.
‘Cause not owning a mansion
Doesn’t mean you don’t have dough.

And yet so many students here,
Whose parents make a lot,
When asked if they have money,
Try to act like they do not.

It speaks to the phenomena
That happens at this school,
Where privileged Harvard students
Think that being poor is cool.

They’ll start with off-hand comments like,
“Oh God, I’m like, so poor.”
Then, they’ll buy their daily latte
From the coffee store.

Come time for summer rent
They’re like, “I can’t afford it, see?”
Despite the fact their parents
Pay their rent in NYC.

And in a weird attempt to seem
Less stuck up or less snobby
They’ll get a campus job
That’s really more a campus hobby.

‘Cause if things really did get tight
Their folks could bail them out.
They’ve got a solid safety net
So they won’t go without.

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Housing Day. Yay.

We all are fast approaching
That magic time of year
Which brings such raw excitement
And just a touch of fear.

The Yard’s abuzz with chatter
And stakes are running high
For first years will get sorted soon
And Housing Day is nigh.

But lemme tell you folks,
Things out there are getting vicious
Cause all those Harvard freshman
are like, hella superstitious.

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Don’t Be a Bro, Yo

Once upon a time
In a land not far away
There lived a humble bro-man.
For now, we’ll call him Jay.

Jay always scoffs at tourists.
And grunts while at the gym.
He thinks that everyone he meets
Is way less smart than him.

He calls all women “females”
And wears his collar popped.
He rants about his startup,
Then consulting, when that flopped.

He cries, “It’s the professor’s fault!”
When he receives a B.
He only hits on freshman girls
And yeah, he punched the Spee.

But Jay was not always this bad,
No, his descent was slow.
I’ll tell you how this freshman lad
Grew up to be a bro.

When Jay got into Harvard
He was happy as can be.
See, Jay believed with all his heart
In meritocracy.

“Hell yeah, they finally picked me!
They clearly were impressed.
Privilege? Ha. That’s not a thing.
I’m here ‘cause I’m the best.”

And so he came to campus
With a confidence unbridled.
The sort of poise that only comes
To those who feel entitled.

Jay started classes quickly
But whined and pouted plenty
“I hate that Harvard makes me
Take this stupid Expos 20!”

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