Miss Audre

I’m a writer—not a very good one, I suppose—but it’s what I do. My senior English Lit. teacher—Miss Audre Chapman—stirred me to write, and though I did nothing with the stirring for most of my life, it never left me. For better or worse, I give her credit, and thanks, for what I do. She’s gone now, but she lives on in the minds of the young students (at least this one) she inspired.

Miss Audre


In the beginning I created

Or so I reckoned

But what I made was without form

And voided by her red pen

And she said

Let it be… write classroom

What you feel in your heart

So that all can see

And when I’d finished

She said it was good

And so … ’twas the beginning


And then I was gone from her

And the writing was no more


I studied the firmament

And the grass and seed

I saw the tree yield fruit

I saw the light of days

And the dark of nights

The oceans, rivers, lakes

The sun and moon and stars

The whales and fish in the great water

The beasts on the land

The birds in the air

And man

Who… given dominion over it all

Was not worthy


I saw love and hate, envy and greed

I saw pain and sickness, and sorrow

Happiness, joy… and it was … what it was

And I was alone

At my desk

Where… in the dim light

I let it be… write


And I remembered her


Copyright © 2014 C Mashburn


Young Anthony Desmond is behind the bar over at dVerse Poets Pub this afternoon, and he’s prompted us to write about our evolution as poets. The term “poet” is used in its loosest when directed at me, but I give it a go now and then. I hope y’all don’t mind.

WAIT!! For those who haven’t heard, my newest novella,JULI“, came out yesterday. Please check it out if you have time!


  1. wonderful tribute to your English teacher! It’s awesome that you keep her obvious passion for writing alive! nice write

  2. glad you got that encouragement…
    i think in experiencing a bit of life….seeing that pain, feeling that range of motion it becomes easy to have it pour forth from our pen…
    let it be…write it…

    hey you a poet man…smiles.

    • This was a definite poured-out-of-me write. I just let it flow.
      Thanks a bunch, Brian!

  3. billgncs said

    In the beginning was the word…. what can be more powerful… I’m glad you write

  4. I almost wrote about a teacher too. They make such a difference, don’t they. The best of them that is who give you confidence, guide you gently, and excite your curiosity! Yes, I found all that here. Congratulations – so glad she did, and you did. Well done.

    • For the most part, we didn’t appreciate Miss Chapman when we were there, but I think many of us recognized what she’d done for us long after the fact.
      Thank you, Gay!

  5. ayala said

    Wonderful to remember such a special teacher .

    • I sometimes think they were all wonderful in their own unique ways; even Mr. Powell. 🙂
      Thank you, Ayala!

  6. I remember the red pencil… wise your teacher was to write from the heart

    • Yes, she was very wise. I sometimes wish she was still here to see what I’m doing.
      Thank you!

  7. Akila said

    Some lessons learnt there! so much around us….She guided you so well

    • Yes, she did. And, I wonder if she knew I’d one day do something with the things she taught me.
      Thank you!

  8. Love how you reconect to your teacher… it’s like the merge of two timelines on that single poing when your pen touch the paper…

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