The bright red leaves on the spirit tree frame the new angled porch window / New Jersey / Nov. 2009
When I was in grammar school I had a hard time learning the “parts of speech” (according to a grammar web site there are eight of them: verbs, nouns, pronouns, adverbs, adjectives, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections). Reading came easily to me. I don't remember having to actually learn to read. One minute I couldn't and the next I could. I remember feeling so empowered — I could read not only books, but signs and billboards and things on the TV and newspapers — and I read voraciously. But I couldn't be bothered with learning the parts of speech and failed a number of tests. I was thinking about this recently after a discussion about school. It occurred to me that reading came so naturally to me that to actually break sentences and thoughts down into “parts of speech” seemed not only unnecessary, but ruined the poetry of the words. It spoiled the beauty of reading for me. Even though my (adjective*) teacher (noun*) railed (verb*) at (preposition*) me (pronoun*), I wasn't going to waste time with it. And all these years later I can say that I've gotten along just fine with words after all.
* According to the dictionary; I can't say for sure.