Skip to content


February 10, 2012
Tree of Life New Orleans

New Orleans is full of life and death, dark and light. Above: the Tree of Life in Audubon Park.

In my classroom in New Orleans, we talk a lot about life and death. Life and death are big topics to the kids in this city, having witnessed crimes in their youth to which no human should bear witness. On a daily basis, I try to help them see life as being full of choices, doors of opportunity opened by education. So many of them express how hard life is, wondering why life has to be so painful and dark. Part of that is teenage angst, of course. In a city full of such beauty, why is it so dark?

Today’s journal topic: If you could know the day of your death, would you want to know? Why or why not?

Overwhelmingly the students said no.

Some said they wouldn’t want the worry. Some said that whatever will be, will be. But far too many assumed they’d be murdered, and when the person who is coming to kill them arrives, they want to be prepared.

Fear is crippling, and this city is paralyzed.

One Comment leave one →
  1. February 10, 2012 6:37 pm

    it’s like the movie Big Fish. I would want to know. but then when i think more about it, i think i should live like it’s my last day anyway – because we DON’T know.
    when i was teaching and would ask my kids what they wanted to be when they grew up, they were totally stumped. they thought they’d be killed before they ever could do anything else. so, they resolved, they would just sell drugs or prostitute like their parents.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: