Friday, December 16, 2011

Finding Answers - A Poem for Two Voices

Hope Looks for Eggs & Answers
Photo by Amy LV

Students - Earlier this week, I had the chance to visit Dale Sondericker's looping third grade students at Marilla Primary. They invited me to their classroom because they were having difficulty reading one of my poems - Two Hemispheres - and they wanted me to tell them how I thought it should be read.

We had an interesting talk about the different ways they tried reading the poem and what I had in mind. It was a treat to hear these children's voices read that poem aloud (it's hard to revise a poem like this when you're only one voice reading aloud), and I liked their way as much as the way I'd envisioned the poem being read. As I left the classroom, Dale stressed to his young writers that if you don't know something in reading, if you can't talk with the author, you can figure out what makes the most sense to you. Wise words.

Later in the day of my visit, Dale told me that when I left, one girl said, "I still like our way better." Hooray! So, today's poem is for Mr. Sondericker's third grade writers who read aloud together, who ask questions, and who find answers inside of themselves.

Kate Coombs is hosting today's Poetry Friday roundup over at Book Aunt. Along with sharing everyone's dish to pass today, Kate gives us a peek at some of the "magic tinged" poems that did not make it into her forthcoming book, WATER SINGS BLUE. Visit, read, ask questions, feast!

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


  1. I love the way your poem reflected the visit to the classroom. It sounds like the students are so enthusiastic about poetry which is wonderful. And your visit must have been exciting for them.

  2. i hear echoes of gertrude stein in these reflective/reflexive poems, which makes me wonder what third graders would make of HER poems.

    anyway, nice lessons all around

  3. It's such fun to read your poems for two voices! I love how the voices alternately support and contradict each other. Thanks for posting them!

  4. Poems for two voices are wonderful! A symphony of chatter. Loved your poem!!!!!

  5. I love the sing-songy, back and forth rhythm of this poem. And the expression of finding answers within ourselves...simply brilliant. Your work inspires me.

  6. What an interesting experiment writing a two-voice poem is! I divided up some already written poems once, rearranged them so they could be for two voices. It was fun to try (although I couldn't tell how successful they were until I heard them read). That's terrific that you wrote them a two-voice poem inspired by your visit -- a lovely circle.

  7. The back story for this poem is as much fun as the poem itself! (Which I LOVE!! Please write a collection of free verse, easy-reader poems that my students will love as much as "You read to me, I'll read to you." Please, pretty please with a cherry on top!)