Category: Publius

And look upon myself, and curse my fate

By | Prose, Publius

I have 177 students. I’d like my reader to pause for that number. 177. I am an English teacher, and sometimes a history teacher. I teach seven periods. On Mondays and Wednesdays, I have no planning periods. I get about 30 minutes for lunch, 20 minutes of real time. Sometimes, when I have to meet …


By | Prose, Publius

I spent the morning watching genetically enhanced sharks. I came a little late, so I never did get the explanation about why it’s a good idea to make sharks bigger, faster and hungrier. That said, I spent the morning watching genetically enhanced sharks. Freshmen (or, as my principal says, “freshmens”) and sophomores had to take …

After Martial

By | Book Review, Humor, Poetics, Prose, Publius

We no longer love you, boss, but the reason – it’s just hard to tell; though there’s one thing we know, and we can tell this full well – we’d all love to smash your ass, boss. _____


By | Prose, Publius

So I say to the kids, ‘Write three paragraphs about your favorite vacation. Introductory paragraph, development, conclusion …’. An assignment teachers have been giving since time immemorial. Samantha raises her hand. “What if I’ve never been on a vacation? Never left the city?” ‘Ah, well, if you’ve never been on vacation, never left town, then …

At the End of the Day

By | Prose, Publius

The kid at the front of the class asks, “Do you love us?” I’m really caught off-guard by this. I want to say yes, but I don’t, because I’m afraid of how the word will get misinterpreted. So I say something positive. Then I‘m really caught off-guard. “Do you hate us?” Again I say something …


By | Prose, Publius

Donnell gets kicked out of another class. He’s on his way to the office, when he spies me in my room during my planning period. So he stops by my room to see what I can offer by way of avoidance. I say, “Let’s talk, but just for a few minutes. Consequences are consequences.” That …

Sex and the City

By | Prose, Publius

Together with his parents, Malcolm watches reruns of “Sex And The City.” He comes-in talking about how “the girls” last night did this and that. Though I don’t say it, of course, I know that show. I love it. I remember the very scenes he’s discussing. These scenes were quite stimulating and, indeed, arousing. But …

Mr. Thomas

By | Prose, Publius

Mr. Thomas died last night. Shot dead in the alley behind his house. He was out for his customary evening walk, and some punks robbed him and shot him. He had taught here for sixteen years, and in the school system for, as I recall, close to thirty years. He was a painter. He was …