Thursday, April 06, 2006
On the way out of the Ashbery poetry reading, I picked up the Spring '06 issue of LIT, a literary magazine published by the New School's Writing Program, and on the subway ride home, I was riveted by a sharp and well-constructed story by Christine Grillo called "Lessons, Senior English." It's from a teacher's perspective, and I love the way it alternates between the supposed omniscience of the adult at the front of the class ("Every boy wrote the same story, even Kyle, the one I knew was gay") and the struggles she doesn't want to admit ("Who's better off, Antonia or Lolita? I thought I could learn something from that essay if only I could assign it"). It's also fun because it made me think about what teachers might have been thinking as they taught us the classics cited in the story: "The Necklace," The Great Gatsby, The House on Mango Street, "The Lottery," Heart of Darkness ...