Who’s Counting? Five

The side effects from my second booster lingered all the way through the day yesterday, so that by the time I went to bed, I felt worse than I had all day. After another bout with some chills and uncontrollable shaking, another somewhat feverish night’s sleep, I wake up feeling almost normal on this fifthContinue reading “Who’s Counting? Five”

Diary of an English Teacher in His Penultimate Year: June 12, 2018

Please excuse my absence. After 30 poems over the 30 days of April, one needs a little rest. But on top of all that, I’ve been having a transformative experience. On Sunday, May 20, I came down from the mountaintop. My hair turned white and now looks blown back by a great force of energyContinue reading “Diary of an English Teacher in His Penultimate Year: June 12, 2018”

#305: The Offending Journal

I’ve seen students copy all kinds of stuff from one another, sometimes going as far as copying down word for word pages upon pages of a buddy’s journal responses, the act of copying all that text more work than actually doing the work, only with the added “benefit” of not learning anything. But I’ve never seenContinue reading “#305: The Offending Journal”

#222: Why I Am Happy

Poet and teacher of mine from a long way back, Peter Sears, taught me about a thing called poetry by corruption, whereby you, the writer, take a poem that you like and just simply and with impunity steal things from it, or, steal it wholesale except for some words or phrases you’ve blanked out from theContinue reading “#222: Why I Am Happy”

#217: Poem on the 26th of the Month of April

My head is empty of poems; instead it’s full of Shakespeare, trying to hold on to my lines even though the run is over. I found myself running some of them today for no other reason than to see if I could do it. My mind is full of The Flaming Lips because I’ve been listening toContinue reading “#217: Poem on the 26th of the Month of April”

#185: The American English Teacher Crosses Off All The Items From His To-Do List

He does it. He crosses off all the items from his to-do list. Many of the things he crosses off were things he actually did, others, not so much. But he wants them off the list so he crosses them out. Some of those unfinished-crossed-off items will end up on other to-do lists. Some othersContinue reading “#185: The American English Teacher Crosses Off All The Items From His To-Do List”

School House Rock ‘n’ Sock

Almost two months ago now, in the throes and excitement and the optimism of a new school year, I found myself writing with my students and posting the results as blog entries here on the Michael Jarmer blog page. I was a happy camper then. Those were truly salad days in September. Fast forward toContinue reading “School House Rock ‘n’ Sock”

#136: Again, The Last Teacher Out The Door

Every year, this is what it’s like. I can’t get my grades in on time because instead of a multiple- guess scantron test I ask my students to make things or write things, things which I must then look at and think about; and there’s never enough time to look and think properly, so IContinue reading “#136: Again, The Last Teacher Out The Door”

#95: On the End of Spring Break

There’s laundry to fold and put away and dust bunnies to suck up and it’s raining and blowing so hard we’re sort of trapped in here. Water puddles up in the flower beds and these damn sugar ants keep crawling over my keyboard while I type up another poem. It’s Saturday, half way through, andContinue reading “#95: On the End of Spring Break”

#41: On the Very Last Work Day of the School Year

On the Very Last Work Day of the School Year It began with a breakfast during which we said tearful goodbyes to beloved colleagues retiring or moving on, a difficult, but joyful thing, wanting them to stay but wishing them well and happy returns for all they’ve done for our school and our kids. WeContinue reading “#41: On the Very Last Work Day of the School Year”