THE BALLAD OF Special EDDIE
DICK SOBSEY, 1978

 

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PART I
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This is a story about special Eddie,
Diagnosed as a bowl of neuro-spaghetti
His mother sat with her friends and cried
While his father kept it all inside 
(If you think you have heard this tale before
You will know for sure when you read some more
 
When he was five his mom took Eddie
To school, but they said He's not ready-
He will wet his pants , he will get in fights
He will freak out under the flourescent lights.
It's for his good, we have got to spare him-
a special preschool might prepare him.
 
So that day in warm September
Was one for Eddie to remember,
For that decision really led
to ten more years of special Ed.
Special teachers , Special books ,
Extra special dirty looks.
 
BD, LD, TMR?
How we wonder what you are!
Though Eddies social life was plain,
He had more names than kings of Spain.
 
The school pyschologist declared
He's neurologically impaired
With overlays (coincidental)
Social and environmental.
Although the problem just might be
His unilaterality.
The case is really so pathetic-
The cause is probaly genetic
 
Eddie never did deny it.
He just sat back and he kept quiet.
Year by year, the time went past .
In special seventh grade at last,
His sixteenth birhday finally neared,
Then Ed dropped out and dissapeared.
 
His teacher wondered what went wrong;
It worried her , but not for long. 
She seen this kind of thing before
And frankly she expected more.
Eddies not the first or last 
Forgotten as the years go past.
 

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PART II
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Down in a bar on Highway 3,
Today some guy sits next to me
And the bartender brings him a short draft beer,
Smiles and says, Hey, Eddies here!
Then this beautiful girl runs acrross the floor
And gives him a look I've seen before.
 
She says, when you want to leave , Im ready.
Your really something special , Eddie.
So he told his friends he would be back
And left in a dark blue Cadilliac.
My drink went down like a glass of fire-
If it wasn't Eddie, I'm a liar.
 
I swallowed my drink, and swallowed my pride
And asked, Who's that who stepped outside?
Eddie they laughed, Don't you know that face?
He's the guy who owns this place,
The laundromat and the bowling alley ...
And half the land around the valley.
 
So he owned some little ginmill joint...
Whats the moral and what's the point?
 
I sat awhile and kept on drinking,
Thought and thought and kept on thinking ...
Does it take brains to make a buck?
Poor folks say it's mostly luck;
But he looked happy too, I guess,
In any terms he's a suscess.
 
He's not the first and not the last one. 
Seems that someone pulled a fast one.
Did we help him succeed
And fill some special learning need?
Or did we only make it tough
For him to show his native stuff?
 
District schools around the nation
Play the game , Evaluation
Share the credit,pass the blame, 
The funding tells who wins the game.
Uncertainty must never show...
So, never say that you don't know.
 
May be we should take our turn
At saying We've a lot to learn.
And when we get OUR home work done,
Someday, we might just help someone.
Heres to that day of self -reliance
WHEN MAGIC ACTS BECOME A SCIENCE.
 
Copywrite Dick Sobsey 1978
permission granted by the author to copy for non-commerercial , educational
purposes please cite source.