“FIshbowls, Werewolves, and Workshops on the Yard, or: How I Learned to Love Prison Teaching” by Corey Campbell

A new piece by alumna Corey Campbell (fiction, ’12) appears online in Waxwing Literary Magazine:

Fishbowls, Werewolves, and Workshops on the Yard, or: How I Learned to Love Prison Teaching

AUGUST 2012

The first time I drove to my writing class at a prison deep in Arizona’s Sonoran desert it was Friday morning and I hit a wall of downpour on highway 60 heading east. My driver’s side windshield wiper didn’t work, and I could see nothing in front of me but the steam on the window — my breath — and walls of water outside. I’d drive under an overpass and for a pulse it would stop, but seconds later pick up again on the other side, relentless. I was scared, didn’t know if I should pull over, even if I could. Besides, if I had found safe haven at a gas station, which would have been smart, I would have been late for my first day of prison class. And who knew what these incarcerated men enrolled in my Introduction to Creative Writing would think of me then?

By the time I passed Gold Canyon, the floodwaters had receded. I had pushed through. But I was still shaken and late. When I told my fiction class later, those ten or so men sitting at round tables in the prison visitation room, they told me to be careful next time.

Continue reading online at Waxwing Literary Journal. 

Really, they said, “You should fix your windshield wipers.”

And: “You hurried here for us?”

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