While checking the UH Mānoa Fall 2019 schedule of History courses

I came across a last name that startled me:


John Stalker, 50 years ago, was
my World History professor,
John Stalker, alive in my mind, as if he were
lecturing in front of me right now,
pacing back and forth along the front stage
of the Varsity Theater.

John Stalker had a photographic memory,
rarely referred to any notes, a dynamic lecturer,
he spoke as though he were acting
historical events for us.

This hardly surprised me,
I’d seen him on Hawai’i Five-0,
and I actually first encountered his energy
when I was younger, and he was
playing Hamlet
in the Farrington Hall theater.
As John Stalker dueled with Laertes
he became so animated
that when he took the first palpable hit,
he fell off the stage and into the audience.

Full audience participation,
John Stalker believed in that.
One day he was lecturing about,
I don’t know,
de Tocqueville or Diderot,
stopped, and pointing at them
yelled booming:

“You people sleeping in the back,
wake up and pay attention.  Do your napping
on your own time.”

I don’t think anyone slept back there after that.
I don’t know how anyone could sleep in his class.

Professors like John Stalker,
you wish they would be here forever,
and as long as we remember him
he lives on.

And, of course, the Stalker I see
in the course catalog
probably is . . .

* * * * *

Today’s word is “forever.” Use it in any kind of writing of any length, then post it and link to me, or leave it in the comments below. I would love to read what you wrote : )

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