Wednesday, October 20, 2010

MyPoWriYe #204 - Gift from the Dark

This is poem #5 of Free Verse Week II, continuing through Friday.

I do love losing power.  That's the truth.  I love the mystery of not knowing when (if?) it's coming back and the way time stops in the wondering.  There is an excitement in unexpected days: snow days, big storms, no lights.  When my sister and I were children, I had this same thrill in preparedness too; I even wrote an essay about it - "Once a Squirrel, Always a Squirrel" - for our local NPR station.  Just Monday, our family received a wonderful package from our friend Rachel in Oregon, and of course I was enthralled by the teeny LED flashlights, immediately tucking them in a safe place, one per child, for the next power-out.  Oh, they're on the spice rack.  In case I forget.

Students - here's a secret about writing.  Sometimes you might want to write a poem or a story, and you might not exactly remember a particular detail.  This is ok.  You can make it work by asking, "What probably happened?"  or "What would I have liked to happen?" or "What should have happened?"  Not every poem is 100% true; not every poem is true at all!  And while the spirit of this poem is true, the facts are not all true.  When my daughter Georgia read these words, she said, "We never really lost power for a week," and she's right.  But our friends did, and they came to stay with us.  I wanted that week-loss to be in my poem, so I put it there.  You are the boss of your own poem.  Isn't that the best?

Today is The National Day on Writing.  Consider heading over to NCTE to add some of your writing or some children's writing to the galleries.

This is the first day of SPARK 10!  I cannot wait to see the "inspiration piece" my partner Amy (!) will send.  I have already sent her mine - it was yesterday's poem, "Everynight Everywhere".  When Amy and I have both responded to our "inspiration pieces", I hope to share our response pieces here.

(Please click on COMMENTS below to share a thought.)


  1. Amy,
    I just wanted to say thank you for a wonderful afternoon today. You always make things so comfortable and easy. It's so easy to tell that you "get it". You make your presentation informative, energetic and so much fun. Your energy is contagious. I can't wait to get into my classroom and continue to work on my writer's workshop.
    I also have to tell you that my daughter (who was in Laura's class today) came home and talked all about "Miz Amy's elvater". She told everyone around the table that she wrote about someone she loves today, but tomorrow she could write about camping, Daddy or the lemonade stand this summer. Thank you for encouraging both my daughter and I in this writing process! :)

  2. Rachelle, Thank you so much for your generous words. I came home so inspired yesterday! What a wonderful building full of warm and open-minded must be thrilled for your daughter to be there (and for yourself too). I hope she has fun in ww today. Thank YOU for making my job so full of joy, and please stay in touch via e-mail if ever there is anything I can do to be of support before we meet again... A.

  3. First of all, I love your poems. I've been looking for some poetry that is within my daughter's grasp without being condescending and yours are just perfect.

    Also, I too am always a bit sad when the power comes back on. :)