Why is there someone else’s name on the poem, I say, handing my student a printout of the same poem she’d turned in last week as her own. I don’t know. Someone must have stolen it from me and put it up on the web. I think I had it on my blog, so anyone could have put it on their site I mean — it’s mine; I wrote it; I mean, like a while ago — I wrote it a while ago, but its been online for a while, so someone could have put it somewhere else online. I think someone stole it from my site. It’s not particularly remarkable poem, certainly not masterful, nor even glaringly dissimilar from the rest of the work done by those in this class. In fact, I’m certain that had I not received a tip via email from one of her classmates with a link to this poem online, I’d be none the wiser. The poem reads:
Last night you left me and slept your own deep sleep.
Tonight you turn and turn.
I say, You and I will be together until the universe dissolves.
You mumble back
things you thought of when you were drunk.
This is a poem by Rumi, I tell my student. All you had to do was turn in a poem, a poem of your own. To be completely candid with you, it wouldn’t have made a difference to me if it were a horribly written poem, as long as you were the one who wrote it. I mean, I wrote the poem, like a long time ago. I know I was supposed to turn in something new, but it’s mine. It’s my poem. Maybe Rumi took it from my site and put it up somewhere else. This almost makes me want to forgive her. Almost.