"[Graziano] gleans poetry from moments that might depress, anger, or pass by a less inspired coworker. ... Written in colloquial, low key language, Teaching Metaphors makes no barriers between the adult and the young person we all once were. Government officials: listen up. Perceptive, approachable book."
"Within his compact, pointed descriptions, Grazianao often takes a sympathetic tone toward even the most hopeless of cases. ... I do enjoy the collection and do highly recommend it."
Fight These Bastards
"If Keats is right about that whole truth and beauty thing, this is the most beautiful book about high school you'll ever read. Nathan Graziano's poems capture the experience of high school, especially the uneasy coexistence of the pain of being young and the pain of growing old, with clarity, grace, and heart. Teaching Metaphors is a powerful collection that should be read by anyone who has ever worked in or attended an American High School."
Brendan Halpin, author of Losing My Faculties and Dear Catastrophe Waitress
"Teaching Metaphors is the consistently right-on execution of an ingenious conceptI can’t think of another book that so thoroughly inventories the contemporary high school’s cast of charactersby a writer long and widely admired for his clarity, conciseness, wit, and humanity. It is a classic of working class literature (and anyone still laboring under the illusion that dedicated teaching is not hard work needs most of all the refresher course in American education that these word-portraits offer)."
Gerald Locklin, Professor Emeritus of English, California State University, Long Beach
"Teaching Metaphors is a collection of poems about life in a public high school, which are often funny and sometimes disturbing. Each section of the book introduces a set of characters who come together at the end in unforseen ways. Anyone who has spent time in a public high school as teacher or student will be drawn in by characters who seem familiar, and moved by the book's unexpected power. Through this book, Nate Graziano affirms for all of us the vital and noble nature of this work of teaching."
Meg Petersen, Director of the Plymouth Writing Project, Professor of English at Plymouth State University
"Devoid of pretense and sharp in its observations, Nathan Graziano's Teaching Metaphors is a book for anyone who's taught or been taught. There are trenchant ghosts here, and the fading beauty of 'Yesterday's Princess,' and the rest of the cast, are all compelling."
Rusty Barnes, editor of Night Train