"When Butterfly Flew Away"- Behind the Poem

September 22, 2012
So, earlier this year, I published a poem onto Teen Ink. The poem, my first, was called "When Butterfly Flew Away". And with it, I added a little blurb about why I wrote it; it was about a teacher I had who had left before she should've and how much I missed her. Well, after seeing an...interesting...picture of her on the lovely social media website we all know as Facebook, I started thinking about the poem, and figured "You know, maybe the way I can get this out of my head forever is to say why I honestly and truly wrote it, and to explain how I feel about it now." So, here it goes.

Rewind back to September 2011. My first day of *guess any grade you want of high school here*. My chorus teacher had left my school after 8 years of teaching, and, along with the 15 inches of rain that closed my school for another 3 weeks (Thank you, Irene...), I wasn't looking forward to this year, let alone the new teacher. The first day came, and with it, the first day of chorus. Rather than doing formal greetings, we went straight to work, attempting to do an acappella song (needless to say, we never performed that...) I had a chance to take another class with her, called Intro to Theater. Over the next 6 months, we formed a bond. She was willing to help me with anything I needed vocally, and we trusted each other. I was really excited to have her, and I thought that we would be working together for a long time.

But something seemed very suspicious about her. At first, she was fine, don't get me wrong, but something started to happen to her. She became more lenient with one of her students, one we ALL hated. Especially myself; he was my best friend's abusive ex-boyfriend. My little group of friends (there were 5 of us) shrugged it off for a while, but then came the big chorus blowoff.

Ah, yes, the big chorus blowoff. That was probably the most entertaining day of chorus EVER. Picture it this way: Teacher starts class. Boy falls asleep in class. Teacher says absolutely nothing, then yells at Girl for chewing gum. Girl then gets angry at Teacher. Teacher becomes a total b****, which angers the rest of the chorus. Time goes by, Boy is still asleep, Teacher still says nothing. Teacher yells at Girl again, Girl lashes out. Boy and Girl argue, Teacher finally sends Boy to the office. Girl asks to go too, and Teacher allows her too, and then 5 other students leave, angered. That was my first suspicion that something was definitely wrong with this woman, and, trust me, it didn't get better from there.

Fast forward a little, to a day in late April, 2012. It seemed like an awesome day; it was my friend's birthday, and what better way than to kick off the day (after English) than our favorite class: Intro to Theater? Not exactly.

You never want to arrive to class when the superintendent is talking to the teacher. And that's exactly what we arrived to. After 10 minutes of pacing outside the room, he came out, cracked a joke, then left. We walked in to the teacher frantically putting in a movie, when I noticed a sub walk in. My first thought was "What the h***? She's here, isn't she?" All she said to us was "Be good for the sub." We asked her if she was okay. She said, "Yeah, everything's fine. Don't worry." and then left. I never saw her again.

The next day worried me. So many things went through my head. I couldn't concentrate. And then my friend interrupted my Spanish class. He told me that I was having a meeting during lunch with the superintendent (and a bunch of other kids). Walking in, we were told what happened: the teacher would no longer be working at our school. Was it a shock? Yes. One brave student asked why. The answer was simple: "She had an inappropriate relationship with a student".

Wait, wait, wait. Seriously? She had s** with a student??? And WE had to suffer?! We asked if the student would be returning to school. He said yes. We knew this would be a problem, but more importantly, we knew our suspicions were confirmed. She had the hots for him! THAT'S why he got away with everything!!

Fast forward 5 days later. The day of my All-State audition. I no longer had her to train me, from the day she left, I figured I was screwed. I'm certainly not fluent in any other languages than English, so I knew that I would fail miserably. Luckily, our long-term sub knew the language I was singing in, so I was safe. I went, I sang, I got a good score, I was happy. That's when I figured, "You know what? Forget her! I don't need her." And I was totally right in that assumption.

Which brings us back to now. It's been 5 months. A new school year has begun, and with it, a new chorus teacher. I felt good about this teacher; mainly because I had met her at a college open house 6 days after this scandal began. The student is now out of school, and we all have moved on with our lives. In a way, the small group of us who bonded with this teacher ourselves, have all bonded closer together. And the way we bond the most? Joking about the situation as much as we can.

And what do you suppose happened to the greedy teacher? Well, she lost her certification immediately, and has a permanent ban from stepping foot on campus. She's defriended most of us on Facebook, which is okay with us. She doesn't care for us anymore, and we don't care for her. Oh, did I mention that she's still dating the kid, and that she now dresses like a punk teenager? Frankly, even though she's older than me, I still feel more mature than her. I know better. And while I still "will never forget the day when my Butterfly flew away", I no longer miss my Butterfly. In fact, she's no longer my Butterfly. She's more like a moth to me; immature and with no idea where the h*** she'll fly next.

But I know where she will never fly again: my school. Because she ever shows up there again, I won't be afraid to give her deja vu, and have her leave the same way she left us on the day Butterfly flew away.





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