Cattle machine = education system, a poem by Alicia Moore

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Sixteen year old Alicia Moore writes about her experience of the education system which is inflexible and fails to respond to individual needs.  Her poem, which appears in 'Insights for A Better Way', vividly illustrates our proposition, 'relationships are better than impersonal transactions'. 

is it that I’m just a waste of space, an oxymoron tiptoeing on the balance 

it is that I can be replaced, upgraded perhaps by a robot in time, or someone less stressed than I 

is it that every time I cry, a part of me dies already, slips away in the tear pieces of my skin 

we’re hear to help, says everyone

the college, the education system itself that does not adapt for those different 

for those who cannot fit the mould 

I am a square trying to fit through a circle 

perhaps just a blot of ink on an otherwise perfect canvas 

but I am unique, and have learned to appreciate my flaws 

an obsession with time that maddens my brain everyday 

an inability to socialise with a brain that turns white noise every time somebody’s voice hits it 

it has come to a point where 

I refuse to speak anymore because my voice has been silenced by the masses 

because no one understands really do they? does anyone understand another as much as they do them self? 

an inability to empathise because it’s all about money 

so we can go to school, to go college, to uni, to job to money, money, money

we’re a cattle machine, a never ending cycle 

we’re every battery hen in a cage, we’re on a conveyer belt of our making 

life is for the taking

so every time someone tells you to just ‘get over it’ 

remember that you, too, are human 

and you should love yourself 

put your mental health before a mindset of corruption and the taming of the human being 

the enslaving of every mind 

I have missed 5 years of education yet I can still read and write, I wrote this poem 

in fact, in a test it is more a construction of who can remember the most than who knows anything 

who does know anything? 

but know thyself 

love thyself 

all these years of education but no one is taught how to love, love ourselves, love others, 

know thyself 

that is what it most important

Alicia Moore is sixteen and likes to write poetry and songs. She missed five years of education on and off due to illness and struggled hugely to fit back in to the system and with her peer group. The poem is a reflection of her feelings about a system which she feels is inflexible and only adds to the stress young people feel on an almost daily basis.