portion of the artwork for Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz's poetry

Teacher Evaluations
Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz

This semester has been all right, my brother says. Well,
except that one of my students was found shot dead in a car.
I guess it’s pretty horrible to blurt it out like that. The boyfriend.
The boyfriend has been arrested. I don’t know what the police
know, if they know anything. I find out most of the information
from the students. She was pregnant, he adds. I didn’t know.

Murder is the number one cause of death in pregnant women,
I say, trotting out another unhelpful fact. It kind of makes sense
if you think about it. People seem to be extra careful around
pregnant women. The women themselves taking really good
care of their health. So murder being number one makes sense.
Well, as much sense as it could make, I guess.

The department asked me to give her grade, he says finally.
I guess, in situations like this, they can grant an honorary degree,
or something, to the parents. You know, as long as some basic
requirements are met. She was failing my class, of course.
I mean, of course, she would have to be failing my class.
The department asked me for the grade. I told them: B plus.

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FRiGG: A Magazine of Fiction and Poetry | Issue 31 | Winter 2011