My Pre-Admission Interview
for the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences
in 1969

by Jehane Taylor, MA English 1972

The night before I had a dream
about a castle that loomed high
above a dismal moat
but whenever I drew nigh
the drawbridges would rise
and leave me standing all forlorn
Waking early on the day
I saw the snow around my house
I saw it swirling through the trees
and knew that I must not delay
so I took a train (the roads were blocked)
from Swarthmore to Bryn Mawr
which meant going to Suburban
then out on the Main Line
My heart beat wildly as the train
chugged slowly through the towns
I checked my notes from time to time
My head ached and my nerves were raw
My feet were frozen in my boots
when finally I reached a door
within those halls of academe.
The Head was seated at his desk
immersed in reading an old book
We shook hands quickly, then he said:
"I hope you’ve read The Faerie Queene!"