Lifelong Learning


The Professor


I know, Professor Janes, you’ll understand

As Head of School you’re almost out of reach,

But as my tutor, though you are a peach,

I need to say your clothes look second-hand.

Your aim to save resources is quite grand –

But khaki boots with yellow trews? That’s rich!

Your jacket’s far too small so when you teach

It wrinkles up your back as you expound.


Your pebble lenses, large as Joddrell Bank’s

Suggest you see with clarity of mind.

Your race research earns rapturous reviews,

While lesser brains admit to partial blanks.

So smarten up yourself; become refined

And watch your students, staff and peers enthuse.


The Administrator


You are the typist for the Health Care Course;

I know you always go the extra mile

And answer phone calls (although some are vile)

While organising meetings for the Profs.

A multi-tasking icon of some force

You sort out student problems with a smile,

Advise on font size, spacing or on style,

Explain the meaning of a contract clause.


But 1960’s shorts show too much leg

And Jesus’ sandals are not quite the mode.

A man of colour, six foot seven tall

Should show decorum – fly the Uni. flag.

So smarten up your kit and we’ll be wowed

Just watch the staff and students be enthralled.


The Student


Born to a single mum I failed at school,

A childhood wasted: getting nowhere fast.

But now my future’s mapped and unsurpassed,

My Uni. Tutor is a perfect jewel.

I’m ‘Student of the Year’ – that’s mega cool,

My life has changed and done a volte face.

I’m where I want to be at long, long last –

My chance of education means that you’ll


Perceive I rise at dawn to essay-write,

Don tee-shirt, jeans, eat breakfast on the run,

Grab rucksack, smart cards, laptop and my phone,

Dash to the lecture hall: though I am slight,

A Grandma, fifty-eight – I’m having fun,

Though with support, I’ve done this on my own!

Janet Turner

If you have any comments on this poem, Janet Turner would be pleased to hear from you.