The poetic voice of J.H.S. teachers

Kelly Lu, Staff Writer

Teachers help students become more efficient writers. They further develop students’ writing styles and uses of figurative language in creative writing, essays, and poetry. Of course, to be able to help others, they have to have writing experience of their own. Many teachers at J.H.S. are long-time lovers of literature and in general the English language.  Here are some examples of poems they have written.


Junior/Senior English Teacher Mrs. Crivilare writes a poem about the joys of her job.

“A Teacher’s Day in 3 Haikus”

That feeling when kids

Who say “I don’t like to read”

Get lost in a book.


The warmth of copies

Fresh off the machine is like

Reassuring hugs.


Cleaning my classroom:

A magician resetting

For the next big show.


Freshman/Sophomore English teacher Mrs. Symons describes reading as a drug in this freestyle poem.

“My Drug”

 I get high on syntax;

it’s true—words are euphoric.

I don’t need that marijuana.

Put away the Jack and Coke.

A fizzy fuzzy navel won’t

make me go berserk.

But words, now there’s a drug.


Words are my hallucinogenic;

it’s called imagination.

Books can take you many places

without the dire consequences.


Some sniff a wine decanter

like a flowery bouquet.

To breathe the pages of a book

or an entire library

will leave my head spinning

not just a minute but for days.


My drug won’t leave me broke.

Oh wait, it’s an addiction.

It’s true—the shelves are packed.

But unlike the meth and Budweiser,

I’ll remember all my journeys

through true or fiction stories.


I can’t wait for my next trip—

to the bookstore or library.


Math teacher with a love of English, Ms. Arnold, writes a poem to her students.

“The Interview”

Eleven times now,

I’ve stood before 100+ students

for the first time,

their names still crisp on the Skyward roster,

my voice steady, poorly camouflaging my butterflies.


Eleven times now,

these students have become my kids,



Some like me; some don’t. That’s not required.


Over nine months or so,

we get to know one another, the good and the bad,

and the crazy woman up front

develops not only expectations for you –

but hopes for you as well.


This is what I want for you:

To know how nice it feels to hear someone genuinely ask how you are today.

To learn how you’re wired, so that you can use your strengths and improve your weaknesses.

To always, always, know there is room to improve, to grow.

To live life full of joy and find ways to pass it on.

To respect everyone, even (perhaps especially) those you don’t like.

To realize you are more than capable of success, and to see that the effort really is worth it.


To find your passion, what makes you want to get up every morning, just as I have found mine.


Freshman/Senior English teacher Buford Stowers uses his movie collection titles and writes a poem combining their names. Stowers explains, “I was inspired by looking at all the titles on the shelves in my movie collection, and eventually it all just started taking shape. It’s very stream of consciousness expressing the chaos of a dream/nightmare.”

“Family Video Nightmare”

The Faculty, with their Cruel Intentions, Scream about their Office Space for Two Days in the Valley like an Urban Legend on Groundhog Day. The Kids Can’t Hardly Wait to be Dazed and Confused Before Sunrise while Looking for Richard who’s Out of Sight in SubUrbia. Life is Beautfiul for an American Beauty who knows True Romance is merely Pulp Fiction when a River Runs Through It. A Few Good Men are Flirting with Disaster in the Labyrinth while The Lost Boys wonder if this is As Good As it Gets and these Great Expectations are merely just Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Mars Attacks this Night on Earth while the Reservoir Dogs are busy Raising Arizona With Honors. The Father of the Bride argues with The Wedding Singer and my IQ drops to a point where I feel like Being John Malkovich or at least Chasing Amy till Mumford tells me I’m a Man on the Moon. Sometimes the 10 Things I Hate About You make me want to take a Big, Sling Blade and make you a member of the Dead Poets Society. What Dreams May Come when That Thing You Do makes you want to Throw Momma From the Train and The Crucible creates Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas? 20 Dates ring out in my head like an Election of Se7en, Small Soldiers who can’t decide What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. So I Married an Axe Murderer, I realize as The Cable Guy shows up making Much Ado About Nothing like a Cry Baby. When will The Rescuers save me from these Mystery Men? A Scent of a Woman causes Awakenings within my Sleepy Hollow and I can’t remember if all this was In Dreams or The Big One. Was this A Nightmare on Elm Street or a Nightmare Before Christmas?…or maybe it really happened and it’s true that Reality Bites.

Each of these teachers found inspiration for their poems from things they’ve experienced or have strong feelings towards.