Lost your PIN or lost your mind?
Think your taxes were a grind?
FAFSA’s looming let’s just say,
And CSS is days away.
If you do misplace your PIN,
Do not fret, you can get in.
Duplicates may be obtained;
The PIN site has a link for same.
Oh, the joys of college years!
But all these forms may lead to tears
Though we plunge back in each time;
(Thus, my relapse into rhyme.)
April – natch – the month for taxes,
To-and-fro accountant faxes,
Also for poetic cruisings,
(And my lowly lyric musings).
But, desiring to enhance
Poetic pleasure which, perchance –
May introduce to you the “ghazal”
(Yes, it sort of rhymes with “muzzle”)
Please stay tuned for FAFSA verse –
(Was the Chipmunk Sonnet worse?)
Likewise, CSS in kind.
Yes, I’ve clearly lost my mind.
* * *
FAFSA Ghazel (Federal Application for Financial Student Aid)
For any college student seeking aid,
The FAFSA is the application made.
We make our way to FAFSA ed dot gov;
(I feel no love when errors are displayed.)
This so-called easy task can make me crazed
As brain cells cranking hard grow tired, then fade.
Providing income, assets, demographics –
They say that’s all but now my nerves are frayed.
The deadline looms and questions plague my days –
My dollars here then gone – it’s all replayed.
The FAFSA runs more smoothly, taxes done –
Their coinciding due dates? I’m dismayed.
But Pell and Stafford and whatever else –
Does warrant my maternal locks now grayed.
The stressful weeks of FAFSA prep? A trade.
To help my college kids, who make the grade.
* * *
CSS Ghazal (College Scholarship Service)
The CSS through College Board? Required.
More detailed number crunching! (Makes me tired.)
Not all, but certain schools insist on this –
The full financial snapshot you’ve acquired.
To go online and stumble through all steps?
Grey Goose with Schwepps? And then I’ll feel inspired?
I will persist through calculations all –
For my good college kids I somehow sired.
And years to go of recordkeeping stress?
I’m filing forms for kids until retired!?!?
My swollen chipmunk cheek not yet expired –
Of more concern? Parental Brain, Rewired.
A ghazal is an old Persian form pronounced “ghuzzle” in English. It uses a minimum of five couplets and a very particular rhyme scheme which I have somewhat bastardized. I haven’t followed the rule of autonomous couplets, and my duplication of end rhymes isn’t quite Kosher either.
Blame it on lost PINs (and sleep), stacks of tax data (and bleary eyes), and impending deadlines making my daily plate of crazy runneth over. Do note that FAFSA deadlines for returning college students are later than entering freshman, and that school-specific CSS deadlines may vary by college or university. Meanwhile, ghazals – written properly – are elegant to read and challenging to accomplish.
Try one. You might enjoy it!
© D. A. Wolf