Stories tagged teaching


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I'm explicating Emily Dickinson when the alarm starts: three long, two short. Lockdown mode. Only there was nothing in the staff bulletin about a drill. So I tell the students to get down on the floor, away from the window. I open the classroom door and lock it from…

The Great San Francisco Poetry Wars, 2

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The next day was my faculty trial, and things grew real intense around the campus of that little college. A large crowd of students began to gather around the base of the building that housed the administrative offices, where my hearing was being held. Th

The Great San Francisco Poetry Wars, 2

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I lived for a time on Red Square in Berkeley. You may have heard of it. It was run by Von Rotten (that’s just plain Von), who was considered the Vladimir Lenin of the Foul Language Movement of Poetry (FLMP, pronounced “Flimp,” sometimes “Flump,”

Girl in 'Nam (Part 1)

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Licking my wounds. That's what my mother calls it. I'm not really sure what that means or if it's true. Sure, losing your boyfriend, apartment and job in a matter of months can drive someone to do something impulsive. Something crazy. But I've always b

Girl in 'Nam (Part 2)

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A life in NYC was one I always dreamed of but I found myself turning into a bitter, sarcastic person who was losing the ability to see the silver lining in just about anything.

Always nervous

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and still every time I walked up there - so it can't be the cycling - I was nervous I would do it wrong

So what?

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So, what?/ So what?/ So? What?

If a Gun is Introduced, it Must Eventually Fire

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His note said: “I’m sick of low attendance.”

The Man Who Couldn't Speak His Love

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I considered explaining that the universe is still evolving and changing, but the look on her face said GENESIS ONE.

The Ghosts of History

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In this lab, where I work 40 hours a week, live the ghosts of questions asked.

Intro to Creative Writing, Rm 218

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Every semester someone mistakes the black and white portrait of Pablo Neruda for Alfred Hitchcock. And every semester, there's a student who sighs and rolls his eyes when the discussion is stalled by those who…

Eating Dim Sum with Di

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Lindsey and I are both talking loudly about things we would never talk about in real life, under the impression that this is all somehow instructional for Di. But I think it's really more about us. Di gives us an excuse to talk like two people unjustifiab

Bigger than Michael Jordan

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The ball thuds against splintered planks, once the gate to our backyard, nailed to a telephone pole that Pap, my grandfather, has cut down to size and planted in the dirt he cleared between the gravel driveway and the irrigation ditch.

My Name is William Hurt and I Am a Movie Star

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Not to sound too ridiculous, but Hurt was giving me the hurt, and it felt good.


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Where are the wads of gum thumbed to the undersides of ancient desks, each crusted barnacle evidence of a bored teenager? Where are the pencils stuck in polystyrene ceiling tiles? Pacing the empty room, Zoom tiles like alphabetized gravestones to a lost year. Alone,…