I got an email from the Donors Choose people. One of the projects I had chosen to support… didn’t make it. They timed out without getting the money they needed for their project. Hey, it happens, about one project in ten, said the email.

I felt like I had personally failed them. Still feel that way. It wasn’t just one I had chosen for my readers to support, it was one I had donated to. And their time was up, and there’s a bunch of disappointed kids and a sad teacher.

Now, when bad things happen, I often hear that it was really for the best. That God had different plans. I think maybe I’m sensitive to it, having heard it about my brother’s death. But around here, we know better. It was not the action of a god that kept books from these kids, it was the inaction of people. Of the local community that could not or would not support the school, of a system that does not prioritize education despite our wealth, and yes, of me. I was, in part, the safety net, and I came up short.

When you don’t believe there’s a god there making sure it’s all for the best, you can’t kid yourself. We are all part of an interconnected web; I influence you, you influence me, and our inactions are every bit as important as our actions.

In the grand scheme of things, a few kids missed out on some poetry books. It’s not vaccines, or lunches, or a roof over their heads. They’ll live.

But I really do think life is better with poetry.

Anyway, the widget is still there, to the left, and the other kids still need your support. Last time I checked, Scicurious had come down with a nasty bug, and we are kicking her but anyway, so donate because it turns out if you don’t, there’s no guarantee someone else will pick up the slack.

And it’s not all part of God’s plan.


  1. cathyw says

    I did my part! (Not to that project, alas – but I’m following the one I donated to, and I see that it only has 11 days and $250 to go. Gulp.)

    On some level the very existence of DonorsChoose makes me sad – in one of the richest countries in the world, why are teachers begging strangers on the Internet for books, paper, and fingerpaints? But at least it’s a sad I can do something about.

  2. ctenotrish says

    That made me sad to read. So to feel better, I went to Donor’s Choose and supported one of your classrooms. I hope they get the additional funds they need!


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