I'm NOT a Test Score This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

By , Paoli, PA
Why is my worth a test score? A small voice cries from the corner in fright
Daddy's just lashed out at the dinner table, his voice booming in the night
Her first grade math test was slightly less than perfect, drawing his wrath
He answers her question, "Because only A's will get you down the right path!"
She nods her head, accepts what he says
She's gotta get A's, she's gotta be the best
But somewhere in her mind, she's still wondering why:
Why is her worth a test score, not who she is inside?

She's in high school now, and struggling to maintain okay grades
Her worth is still a test score, her privileges come with getting A's
Her AP exams are over, but pressure is on for the looming Bio SAT's
Those three dreaded letters that fill parents' conversation with jealousy
Looming ahead is junior year, real deal SAT
Someone save her from these demons, please
She's crying silently, tears dripping from her bloodshot eyes
Why is her worth a test score, not how she feels inside?

There's darkness all around her, blotted lines of midnight black ink
She's not allowed to feel, she's not even allowed to think
Her worth is not a test score, she knows that deep in her heart
But the chattering voices dominate, here in the unending dark
All she has, has been taken away
Her joys, her hobbies, to prepare for Test Day
There's not a single person to hear her strangled cries
Why is her worth a test score, not what she wants inside?

She holds on to her dreams, because she'll need them once she's set free
In this depthless abyss, she holds on that dream; she believes:
That her worth is not a test score; she was put here to do something great
Even without an 800, she'll find her prince, destiny, her worthy fate
She clings to that hope, despite Mom's glare
She clutches her number and faces Dad's stare
Because someday, she'll be free to live her own life
Her worth won't be a test score, but who she is inside.





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