Sunday, April 3, 2011

Poetry Sunday

Last weekend I had pulled out the typewriter to work on a letter. My eight-year-old daughter came in and asked if she could "use your typewriter to write some poems." I finished up the letter and set this up in her room, gave her the quick overview of the controls, and let her go. About an hour later, this was the result.

20110403 typecast pt1

M____'s Book of Poems

The old tree sits on a hill
Near a meadow past a stream
The tree falls down

Bird it flies it chirps
Letting its song
Ring out
In the open air

Jumping, trotting
Always nice
Living in a stable

Slow but steady as a rock
Live in sea or marsh
God's favorite animals

20110403 typecast pt2

Tiger's soft stripes
Blends in
The jungle
Eats meat

Dot grows to be
A large animal
That can take
You on an adventure

Can take you
On an adventure
Even by reading
A single page

Brightly shining
Happily glowing
Warming the park
Hot summer day

Lights flash
Green grass
Far away
The crowds cheer


Ted said...

zenlike koans from the typewriters of babes...

Anonymous said...

Excellent wordsmithing!

Richard P said...

So sweet -- touching testimony to your daughter's imagination and to the power of a typewriter.

Rob Bowker said...

How long does it take to unlearn? To be as lucid and fluent as that? Impressed and humbled M---! ...and I prefer the uncorrected version ;-)

Strikethru said...

Wow, I like these. God's favorite animals. CARCK!

Wonderful. Children are sometimes the better poets (particularly yours!). I don't say that in a precious way because -I will admit- I am not a poetry fan. I just think children often get at the heart of sentiments in a less tortured, more fluid way. Their lens is clear, I suppose you could say.

Mike Speegle said...

"Live in sea or a marsh/God's favorite animals."

Just fantastic.

OK, I can't claim to know a lot about poetry. But dang, you got yerself the makings of a serious poet there.

What I wouldn't give to be able to see the world that way again. I guess that's one of the reasons we have kids, to be able to glimpse, if through a glass somewhat darkly, a world still full of wonder.

Duffy Moon said...

I think the horse one reads way better if you don't automatically correct her spelling of "horse".

Thanks for sharing - those are awesome. And what dad's heart doesn't grow two-sizes-too-big when their kid makes such a request?

Elizabeth H. said...

Love this, of course.

I'm particularly intrigued by the turtle verse. God's favorite animal...?

mpclemens said...

@Rob: Personally, I like the rough versions, too. She was working very hard on this, and one of my Key Pieces of Advice was: "Don't worry about mistakes. You'll make mistakes. Just keep typing."

I transcribed in case the scan didn't come out very clear (she's a light typist) and because I wanted to capture the intent of the poem. But I'm very happy with the Happy Accidents.

@Duffy: Agreed. "Hours" makes it a much more interesting poem!

@LFP: I'm not sure of the theological implications here. Best to ponder the significance on your own, I suppose.

For the record, my favorites in the bunch are "Books" and "Soccer," especially the spacing of the latter.