Saturday, March 8, 2014

Playing with Poetry

Slice of Life Challenge, Day 8

Every class begins with Writer's Notebook. Even before the bell rings, my students and I grab our notebooks, leave them open on our desks, anticipating writing moments. I spent some time looking through a handful of old notebook this morning. It turns out there are many, in all sizes and states. I ran across an idea scribbled in red, sideways on the page...when I grow up. So here is this morning's Slice of Life: an idea taken from my notebook.

When I Grow Up


Photo of Elk Lake from ERSchools
When I grow up
     (I told anyone who'd listen)
I want to be a mermaid
     or an astronaut
and swim the stars
     to be lifted,
carried away by the current
     to far off places.
I'd dip and dive
     open-eyed
under water
     wishing I could hold my
          breath long enough to make it
               to mid-lake
     where feet couldn't touch bottom.
But I'd get two breaths out
     on tippy-toes
          nose poking above the wake
     and turn toward shore
          toward home
too scared to venture much
     further than my
          breath could
               carry me.            

5 comments:

Kevin Hodgson said...

... dip and dive
open-eyed ...
stay alive
when it matters most -
listen close
for sounds all around
you
And then, when you least expect it,
close your eyes
dip and dive
and dream.

-Kevin
PS -- stealing a line to make my own.

Jen Ward said...

Kevin,

Thank you for such a creative and thoughtful response! I love your new piece. I also caught your SOL post the other day, combining lines using Zeega. Not only was it poetry perfection, but the presentation was captivating. What a great tool to use with student writers as well. I'll be stealing this idea from you!
--Jen

Anonymous said...

I LOVE how you set up your poem. The structure added so much to the overall meaning that I got out of it. I hadn't thought about doing something like this before--it's like making your blog your writers notebook. Your last line was by far my favorite (not that the rest wasn't beautiful as well). So many times I have been too scared to go beyond where my breath can take me. It definitely hit home.
Thanks for sharing!

Jaana said...

Love your blog's background! Now I will going to search my old journals for new inspirations! Thank you for giving me a spark!

Cathy said...

Jen,
What a delightful flash back to when you were young. Oh, the things we wanted to be. I loved these lines:

"I want to be a mermaid
or an astronaut
and swim the stars
to be lifted,"

I'm also intrigued at the contrast between wishing to be a mermaid or astronaut - things that take one far away - to not wanting to leave the safe shores of home.

Cathy

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