What’s the day-to-day, decade-to-decade life of a teacher like? Documenting Patricia Austin’s forty-plus years as an educator, Tales from a Teaching Life: Vignettes in Verse invites readers along on a chronological journey through elementary and university classrooms. Austin captures modes, moods, and moments of teaching, from a stumbling entry into the profession to an unexpected dive into the brave new world of online instruction. In verse at turns reflective, surprising, and humorous, these poems testify to the strength and profound impact of teachers everywhere.
“Tales from a Teaching Life anticipates life for beginning teachers . . . and generates memories for those like the author who have spent their lives in sundry classrooms at all levels.”—Virginia McGee Butler, retired teacher and author of Becoming Ezra Jack Keats
“Teachers are the backbone of, and best hope for, human society, but you don’t have to be one to enjoy this honest, insightful, and captivating read. Highly recommended.” —Leslie Staub, author of If You Were An Elephant
“Poignant yet whimsical, Tales from a Teaching Life is a bit of truth we’d all be better for hearing. Any teacher will see parts of themselves reflected on the page, echoing across time and space with the evidence of a life well lived. Brava!”—Marti Dumas, author of the Wildseed Witch series
PATRICIA AUSTIN has spent her life in the hallowed halls of schools. Her career as a primary school teacher was followed by a move to higher education, including a stint at Tulane and twenty-six years as professor of children’s literature at the University of New Orleans.