Friday, August 12, 2011

I Cry - Poems about Confusing Feelings

Welcome to Philip Levine, new Poet Laureate of the US!  You can read some of his work here at The Writer's Almanac.  For today, here are a few words, the last lines, from "On My Own."

...know, now it's obvious, what with the light
of the Lord streaming through the nine
windows of my soul and the music of rain
following in my wake and the ordinary air
on fire every blessed day I waken the world.

Changing Feelings
by Amy LV

When I was a little girl, I loved summer camp.  I loved summer camp as soon as my parents left, that is.  The transition of Mom and Dad leaving me for a whole week, however, was teary.  Hours of bonfires, play, crafts, sports, swimming, and camp songs later, the week ended and my parents returned.  So did my tears.  I always thought that my mixed up feelings were rather funny, and I still do. 

Students - one way to find writing ideas is to watch and notice your feelings.  We are all full of so many emotions, and writing can help us to understand our moods and our loved ones' feelings too.  When I was a little girl, my sister Heidi and I would dance around our living room to the songs in Marlo Thomas & Friends' FREE TO BE YOU AND ME, a book full of heart-wisdom both then and now.

Here's one favorite song from the book/record/8-track/cassette/CD/ipod download: Rosey Grier singing, "It's Alright to Cry."

And since it is still summer, here's another camping poem about sleeping in a sleeping bag!

Karen is hosting today's Poetry Friday smorgasbord over at Karen Edmisten: The Blog with the Shockingly Clever Title.

(Please click on POST A COMMENT below to share a thought.)


  1. Today instead of trying to FIND the right poem to capture my feelings, I just went ahead and WROTE one! I totally agree about writing to understand!!

  2. So true, those feelings about camp. . .and it will be interesting to see what Mr. Levine does as the new PL. :)

  3. Hi, Amy--

    I like knowing that your sister is also a Heidi, and it may be that I still know every word of Free to Be. I do especially love Rosy Grier's big burly voice letting us know "it just might make you feel better.

    I'll go and get to know Philip a little better too. : )

  4. It's happy news indeed -- this choice of Philip Levine to be the country's newest poet laureate.

    My favorite poem of his is the imaginative fantasy about one of his middle school teachers: "M. Degas Teaches Art and Science at Durfee Intermediate School -- Detroit, 1942."

    I posted that poem last year on my blog, together with his explanation of how he found his calling to be a poet:

  5. You captured the feeling perfectly! Leaving a place we enjoy is always so hard.

  6. Oh, I love the confusion and two kinds of crying, Amy. So sweet and so true.

  7. Thanks for drawing my attention to Philip Levine, Amy! Wow.

    Also, thanks for pointing out the richness of exploring our contradictions.

  8. Happy Poetry Friday, all! I am so glad you stopped by. That feeling about camp is one I remember so strongly...and I, too, look forward to getting to know more of Philip Levine's work. Maria - that poem is wonderful! A.