Skip to main content
Updated date:

Proof of Prior Learning ~ a Poem

John is a poet and short fiction writer who enjoys collaborating on stories with other writers, and partaking in challenges.

Searching for Proof: Image by prettysleepy1 from Pixabay

Searching for Proof: Image by prettysleepy1 from Pixabay

Word Prompt: "Proof"

Once again, Brenda has provided us with another inspiring word prompt in "proof." Even when I am convinced that I won't be able to think of anything worthy of contributing, my muse seems to have other ideas. She pokes me in the ribs, pulls my hair, prods me, or just annoys me to get my attention until I relent and let her do her thing.

So, despite not expecting to meet this week's challenge, here is my take on the word provided, a poem called "Proof of Prior Learning." Thank you, Brenda.

by Michio Kaku

by Michio Kaku

Proof of Prior Learning

“Do you have proof, I ask you, of prior learning you have done?”


“Well, I learned to peel potatoes, and how to wash and scrub a floor.

I learned to fix the hinges on a wonky swinging door.


I learned to use a shovel, and a barrow, and an axe.

I learned to count my dollars and to pay my share of tax.


You ask me where my proof is? Well, it isn’t in a book.

I display it in my knowledge and my practical outlook.


Set me any test or task, I’ll give you all the proof you need.

I learned to speak in public, and I can also write and read.


Wheelbarrow and shovel: Image by Tania Dimas from Pixabay

Wheelbarrow and shovel: Image by Tania Dimas from Pixabay

I learned how to use my common sense to catch a venomous viper.

I learned how to procreate the world, and even change a diaper.


I learned how to cook to feed a crowd, make it tasty and nutritious.

I learned how to, in all I do, always be judicious.


I learned to change a tractor tyre, using tyre-iron, jack, and power.

I learned to drive a forklift, and arrange a bunch of flowers.


I learned to build a dwelling to keep out the wind and rain.

I learned how to sail a vessel, and how to fly a plane.


"A dwelling to keep out the wind and rain": Image by David Mark from Pixabay

"A dwelling to keep out the wind and rain": Image by David Mark from Pixabay

So, proof of prior learning, I’ve got it all in spades,

‘Cause I’ve been learning all my life, and I’ve passed in every grade.


The proof's not in the telling, don’t believe what you can’t see,

And as I’m a man who shows, not talks, we just cannot agree.


For you want a piece of paper that says I’m qualified,

A certificate or a degree, or else I can’t be hired.


So, you can stick your paper proof up where the sun don’t shine,

And I’ll just go on learning in the school of life, just fine.”

The moment you feel like you have to prove your worth to someone is the moment to absolutely and utterly walk away.

— Alysia Harris

© 2021 John Hansen

Related Articles