Kendall McClellan’s Lesson Plan: A Pandemic Miracle

CSUCI Spring 2020

Kendall McClellan’s Lesson Plan: A Pandemic Miracle  

By Tyler Lucas Mobley

We’d emerged from Baldwin and Hughes to “Let America

Be America Again” she took a brave stance behind the 

lectern and said “when I made this lesson plan back in

Christmas break, I never would’ve guessed that the day

I planned to talk about the stock market crash of 1929, 

the market would fall by a percentage that exceeds the 

record set the week that began the Great Depression.” 

The students just shift in their seats already convinced

their future is moot. This is what an education buys, 

informing you of the irony over head like a bucket of

icy water ready to drench, who’s recording?

The Diamond Princess hung on the horizon as an 

appetizer for things to come, while most were 

fenced on how Buttigeig gave suspicion that if you 

peaked inside his suit there would be dozens of 

mice pulling levers. Then it happened, the world

held it’s breath, some became deciders of 

essentiality while others never picked up their 

heads from the task at hand. 

Never more definitive uncertainty in the air 

her head recoils as if hit with a whiff of awful,

dispelling a reality she’d rather not accept. 

And then class went on, because that’s what 

we did back then. If I’d known it’d be my last 

day with her I might’ve made more of a goodbye. 

Notes to Generation Fortunate Son

Spawned from a memory of Eli’s 4runner.

Notes to Generation Fortunate Son 

By Tyler Lucas Mobley 

Fuzzy flags carried off planes

no one needs to ask about. 

Spare my eyes the sight

society says to itself. 

Protest read aloud the writing on the wall, 

a cousin, a brother, a father ties a nation 

in a knot no one is sure they should be in. 

Growing pains diagnosed from the comfort 

of their sacrifice, 40 years later teenagers 

returning from a high school lunch at Chipotle 

hang out car windows, hands managing the recoil 

of machine guns mounted to the chopper they’re 

clipped to, because Creedence is playing on max,

Lieutenant Dan taught us to walk again. 

Covered by the freedom those died providing

colors fade with the fog of endless war.

Not that anyone notice when times grew slack,

media removed vulnerable to reality’s attack.  

More Than a Moment

A free write on 2/15/21 revised and stanza-tized into this, enjoy.

More Than a Moment

By Tyler Mobley

More than a moment, 

Count Cristo starship manor. 

More than a moment,

singing circles of soul sayers 

let loose from an environ plane.

Gingerbread men praising a recipe,

some frost lost, now scowling the baker.  

Street carts sell heart of the city 

big lights shine on trying faces,

the weak force as Metallica notes

“Nothing else matters.”

Faint morrow oh sung,

the Sun dropped by for tea,

twinkling mist escapes 

mother’s eye. For what, 

a dash of guilt produced a

criminal record, says the judge

to Soundcloud. 

Quake hath waltz feet

a measure of empire,

felt rumbles of toeing masses

clocked on a standard of living.

Forbear hollow remarks

as wood knocks back 

dulled by your patience. 

Smash hit vibrations 

like the warm beat of 

reporters who step 

into the world, my office. 

Unwrung words told

of stealing the fun. 

Heels thrown up 

bang bang against 

a neighborly wall, the 

sound circumnavigates 

to find the needle was 

never dropped. 

Listening for Ray Charles’ 

The Spirit of Christmas. 

So repetitious the world rewinds

through generations, 

a slideshow of history.  

Explosions tidy up into their 

shells, apes devolve to 

sleestacks, to a few ameba 

vibing over a volcanic vent 

on oceans’ dance floor. 

“What are you doing down here

James Cameroon? 

Titanic is that way. “

Who’s to say it hasn’t 

happened already? 

A moment imposed like 

a waiter who begs for an order. 

“Is the shoelace on special tonight?”

Oh how awful knowing

you’ve ate something sickening,

civilization in a nutshell. 

Advancements worn backwards,

grown into two left feet. 

As miles poo poo

the metric, all lesser 

measures charged with 

their distinction. 

Can’t help but feel it’s 

all going the way of 

the carriage. 

Cobblers out to offend,

I reclaim my time 

to when only birds 

could tweet. 

Hosting The Bachelor 

a so called working life,

standing on loose ground 

where comparisons vanish 

with employment. 

Kindness ushered out with starvation, 

in the name of progress.

Bow to the mob before the 

pot boils over.   

Nonplussed Mussolini

Nonplussed Mussolini

By Tyler Mobley

A grandfather born in 1922 the year Mussolini seized control of Italy by uniting fascist groups in a march on Rome. Mussolini awaited the outcome of his command in Naples, however the capital siege went smoother than expected. King Victor Emmanuel III refused to sign an order given by Prime Minister Luigi Facta to impose counter forces on the attack. Instead the Italian government said if you can’t beat them join them and surrendered to the fascist, making Mussolini the youngest Prime Minister in Italian history. 

Luca Falcone grew up in the Adriatic countryside far from the piazzas where roaring crowds gathered to listen to their leader work himself up into a coronary of fascist propaganda. Mussolini’s charisma infected the masses with thin promises of empire at the expense of countless Ethiopian lives. 

By 1940 Luca had had enough, with his younger sister in tow he fled Italy for a new life in America. Arriving at Ellis Island aboard The Rex, an Italian made steam powered ship that in 1933, won the blue ribbon for the fastest Westerly voyage across the Atlantic. 

World War was underway, a pact with Hitler meant there was still hope for victory. Luca, nonplussed by a prideful Mussolini, when referring to politicians his quip that lives on today was, “they all the crook.” A philosophy that allowed him to see past the frantic crowds and smooth talk of his country’s leader, to follow his own dream to a new land an ocean away. Against the grain types listen to their heart and weigh out the options given by the head. 

Luca would go on to enlist in the United States Army and see battle in Tunisia and Sicily. Upon return Luca made a life for himself, he married, started a business and had a family. Last to the party was my mother.

I remember him holding me in his arms while he cooked zucchini picked from his garden. He loved to trim the roses in the front yard. He did it, he lived the American Dream. I am forever grateful for the courage it took to leave it all behind to step into the unknown. 

“Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man”

– Joyce

My father was adopted, though not in the normal sense, his mother remarried when he was only 4 years old so his step father is the one he calls dad. Though the man he sees in the mirror is Ellis Jump, a cad of his day left my grandmother a few years after my father was born. 

When Ellis forfeited custody of his child there was no way he could’ve known that he’d go on to become an accomplished sculptor. He fled to Paris with a small black poodle where he’d stay for the next 5 years. Ellis bounced around apprenticing under giants of a booming art scene. He earned specialized skills he’d bring home to Ventura where he taught sculpture at the Community College for the next 37 years. 

I knew him as a storyteller, the time in Bainbridge traffic when he used his croc slipper as a urine receptacle and poured it out the window. He could make anyone laugh, any bagger at check out he’d leave in stitches. I remember his smile surrounded by a fuzzy white beard. 

If Ellis didn’t listen to whatever pulled him towards Europe where he was able to immerse himself in what became his passion, the world would be a different place.

Chaos theory accounts for the unrealized power of single events or decisions that bear no obvious correlation on later outcomes. Often it is fractional information that skews a system ever so slightly for things to fall a different way. 

A seed carried in a breeze.

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Benito-Mussolini/Rise-to-power

https://www.britannica.com/event/March-on-Rome

https://www.italianliners.com/rex-en