Friday, December 5, 2014

Beautiful - Writing from a Sketch

Looking Heavenward
by Amy LV

Students - I got the idea for today's poem from, um...well...resting.  Here's the story.  This morning, I was all set, ready to post a poem that I had written long before today.  I had a poem, a picture, and thoughts.  It was just about ready to publish here.  Then I realized, "Hey...this poem would fit well in my forthcoming book, WITH MY HANDS: POEMS ABOUT MAKING THINGS.  I should see if my editor likes it enough to include it."  So I sent that poem to my editor at Clarion.  And so my post idea for here was gone.  See, a poem going in a book needs to be saved for the book.  Back to square one.

This evening, sitting by the heater, I was not sure where to begin.  My head rested on my arms, and I flipped through my notebook only to find this little sketch of a mouse looking at the sky.  Then the poem just grew as I closed my eyes and eveningdreamed.  It is similar to some other poems I have written, most notably one about a star and a starfish that I cannot completely recall. I seem to like the idea of small creatures looking up at the sky. How could I not?

I rather floated my way through this poem.  For now, my favorite parts of it are "so full of woe" and those last three lines that break the rhyme pattern: I'm small.  I'm small.  I'm small.  

Today's poem is a story poem that grew from a sketch.  You might wish to make a sketch or drawing and then write from it.  You might wish to go back to an old sketch or drawing and write from that.  You see, ideas come from everywhere...even old doodles.

In happy writing news, I am thrilled to share that just today, I completed revisions for my forthcoming READ! READ! READ!, a book of poems about reading to be published by Wordsong.  I can't wait to tell you who the illustrator will be. I can't wait to find out myself.

Anastasia is hosting today's Poetry Friday extravaganza over at Booktalking #kidlit.  Head on over to check out the Kidlitosphere poem fun for this week!

Please share a comment below if you wish.


  1. So glad she liked the poem (and wanted it for the book!) I look forward to seeing who will illustrate the new book! :-)

  2. How adorable your poem is, I love it!

  3. Amy, the wee little mouse looking up at the sky gave you food for thought. Your poem would make for a great conversation starter on the topic of being proud of who you are. This would lead to active colalborative conversations and writings about self-esteem.

  4. Perfectly charming. Thanks for sharing it.

  5. Amy,
    Congratulations on the upcoming book. We've all felt insignificant like the mouse, but the stars reminded him that he's great. That's all the boost he needed. I also wondered what a snowflake might have told him.

  6. I love the story almost as much as the poem...and I can't wait to read the one you saved!

  7. How exciting! Just think if you hadn't written one so ideal for your book this beautiful mouse poem would not have come about.

  8. Hi, Amy--

    So wonderful to spend a little time with you in DC! Your poem makes me think of two other works, one you probably know, by Felice Holman--"Who Am I?" ,
    and a book you may not know, which I read to my class every December, called The Mole Family's Christmas by Russell and Lillian Hoban. Your mouse's feeling is the essence of spirituality--having that sense of yourself as "someone small, someone small--but a part of it all." Lovely!

  9. I love your little mouse poem and can imagine it in a book someday, too. How in the world do you decide? Excited about your book news. I know your number one fan will be, too.

  10. Many, many, many congrats, Amy! So proud of you.

  11. A beautiful and inspiring story poem, Amy. Love the "twinkly voices" and the way my heart hums when I read, "I'm small/I'm small/I'm small."