Friday, September 22, 2017

Poetry Friday & Falling in Love with Meter


Two Pen Cases
Photo by Amy LV

Students -  I fell in love with a meter last week.  Yep, I did.  I was home, just reading in this book...

Frost Collection
Photo by Amy LV

...and I came across this poem, Asking for Roses, by Robert Frost.  I read it quietly.  And then I read it out loud, just listening to the rolling rhythm. I loved the story, but I really loved the meter.

Asking for Roses - in the Public Domain
(Click to Enlarge)
Photo by Amy LV

And while I was at it, I fell in love with the rhyme scheme too.  I thought it was so NEAT that the word roses ended every single one of the six stanzas.  And that there were six rhymes for the word roses, each ending the second line of each stanza.  I took some notes about Frost's rhymes.

Frost's Rhymes
(Click to Enlarge)
Photo by Amy LV

Then I decided to try my hand at Frost's lovable meter, choosing first my six-times repeated word (writing!) and its associated rhymes.  I needed seven words that words that could make sense together.  I visited RhymeZone to scout out rhymes, selecting the ones you see on my notebook page below. Honestly, at first, I did not think that the words below would work.  I worried that they would not sound forced.  But I pushed on.

Possible Rhymes
(Click to Enlarge)
Photo by Amy LV

I kept trying, kept writing, kept scribbling.  Below you can see that my writing process really does require significant crossing out, something I find much more comfortable with pen on paper.  Initial drafts for me need some serious black-pen-scribbling.

(Click to Enlarge)
Photo by Amy LV

As always, I read and listened, read and listened until I liked how the poem sounded.  Then I took it to my keyboard and continued revising a word here, a word there, over the course of a week.  And I am pretty happy.  My poem's meter learned from another poem's meter.  And I learned too.

It is true that you, too, can fall in love with a poem and a meter, just as I did with Frost's Asking for Roses.  I share a poem about this on the back cover of my new READ! READ! READ! (Wordsong), illustrated by Ryan O'Rourke, and released just this past Tuesday.

Back Cover Snip of READ! READ! READ!

Read poems aloud often.  And talk about the different meters you admire with your writing friends. Experimenting with meter is a wondrous way to challenge ourselves.  Allow yourself to breathe in a meter you've never breathed in before, and you may just be surprised by the words that follow!

I am so happy to welcome author Caroline Starr Rose to my other blog, Sharing Our Notebooks this month. Please stop by to read her notebook poem, to peek into her notebooks, and to enter her book giveaway! And know...I seek student notebook sharers over there...please consider sharing!

It's my pleasure to host the Poetry Friday roundup here today.  If you wish to share the link to your poetry post, please do so below at the Inlinkz Link-Up, and I will be around to comment today and throughout the weekend.  

All visitors - we welcome everyone to this poemgathering every single week.  Anyone may read.  Anyone may comment.  Anyone may link in!  Happy Poetry Week ahead!


Please share a comment below if you wish.


Brenda Harsham said...

Frost inspires me regularly. I think his "road less travelled" is the most famous bit of poetry, most googled and least understood. I like where you've take it, the classic blank page struggle, so many young writers face. Congrats on your new book. I look forward to reading it. Thanks for hosting, as well.

Alan Wright said...

Hi Amy. Thank you for hosting Poetry Friday. I really enjoyed reading your opening poem. It painted a clear image of the myriad distractions and conflicting feelings we frequently encounter in our writing lives. So often it is wrapped in guilt and some degree of frustration. I also enjoyed your various notebook images. When we share such insights it is somewhat like a magician sharing the tricks poked up his or her sleeve. Less experienced writers need to see these collected entries. They gain knowledge of the multitude of things informing the life of the writer. It is rich evidence of the process involved and they can readily see what is attracting our attention. Powerful stuff indeed. Great to be here!

michelle kogan said...

Thanks for this timeless poem by Robert Frost–though his words come from centuries before the message and asking is eternal. The weaving in and out of the lines is lovely and reminds me of a rose on a vine twisting and turning. I really enjoyed following your process Amy, from Frost's poem to breaking it down and beginning one yourself. I like your beginning poem–it offers some of the same back and forth, twisting and turning as in Frost's poem–"I am never yet ever enchanted by this mystical discipline – sitting and writing."
Thanks also for hosting Poetry Friday and the roundup, and all the best with "Read! Read! Read!

Kiesha Shepard said...

Oh, Amy! Your poem speaks to my current reality with writing as of late. My notebook calls to me, but too often, I never pick up the pen. I do intend to make time this weekend to sit and write. Thank you as always for sharing your process and love of poetry with us!

Molly Hogan said...

I've loved visiting your site for such a long time and always leave feeling inspired. Today is no exception. You do such a wonderful job crafting poems, explaining the evolution of these poems and then offering an entry point to others. A poetic trifecta! Congratulations on your new book and thanks so much for hosting today.

Mitchell Linda said...

What a fun and fascinating mentorship. Lately, I've been looking for poems that I inspire me to follow a connection in some way. I'm really wowed by how you fell in love with the meter of Frost's poem and produced a work too. It's such a neat way of entering and continuing the "circle of life" of poems and poetry. I am intrigued by the meter of your poem and will read Frost's to see the meter connection. I wonder if I can follow too? I'll give it a go.
Thanks so much for hosting Poetry Friday. It's truly a hi-light of my week. You've done it beautifully.

Heidi Mordhorst said...

Good morning Amy!--and a happy, happy, wordy sweety writy read-y book birthday to you! So exciting. These posts full of process are so revealing to students, teachers and other poets.

My post is my first real golden shovel (do we capitalize that?) and I can attest to the fun and the feeling of productivity associated with adhering to a formal challenge. Thanks for hosting!

Tabatha said...

Thank you for sharing your poem crush and process, Amy! And also, thanks for hosting us today!

Laura Shovan said...

Thank you for hosting today, Amy. This peek inside your notebook and your process was exciting! Some poems just come to us and others require rolling up our sleeves, studying, researching, and WORK.

This week, I'm fascinated by Patricia Valdata's book about women aviators, Where No Man Can Touch. Her concrete poem, "Landing on Her Feet," is about a famous parachutist, Tiny Broadwick.

Congratulations on your new book!

Kay said...

Happy, happy, happy book birthday to you! I am looking forward to reading all your poems about my favorite activity--reading! As always, I learn and learn when I read your post with both your poem and the process behind it. Lately I can relate to the fight between head and heart and facing all those blank pages! This week I worked and struggled with writing my first golden shovel poem. I was inspired by Langston Hughes and by Michelle Kogan's golden shovel poem last week. Thanks for hosting today!

Irene Latham said...

Of course YOU would fall in love with a meter, Amy! Not sure that has ever happened to me -- I am such a free verse gal! It also doesn't surprise me that we both wrote poems about writing this week. Tis the season. Thank you for your beautiful words and for hosting. xo

Diane Mayr said...

I'm looking at Frost, too, for inspiration this week! There's a lot hidden in plain sight in his work.

Michelle Barnes is playing proud Mama this morning at a special breakfast, so I'm also posting the link for Today's Little Ditty--I'm her guest poster, in more ways than one!

katswhiskers said...

I love how we can learn and stretch our writing, from modelling a new poem on another poet's metre. My biggest success with that would probably have been from Banjo Patterson's 'On Kiley's Run'. And I adore your poem 'In Love'. So simple and soooo sweet! (And is that a real, edible biscuit book cover? Wow! #awe) Thank-you for sharing your process - and hosting the poetry party.

Matt Forrest Esenwine said...

It's very easy to fall in love with meter when it's Frost you're talking about. That's one of my favorite collections. It's interesting to read his early poems, which - while still good - are quite different in substance and style from what he is most widely known for.

Congrats again on your book birthday, and I hope you're enjoying being today's Poetry Friday hostess!

Violet Nesdoly said...

Big congratulations on the new book Read! Read! Read! And I loved hearing about your process. (Amazingly like mine when I use a mentor poem to write a metrical rhymer.)

jama said...

Fascinating to read about the evolution of your poem,how Frost's poem inspired you to experiment with a new metric pattern. Congrats again on the release of Read! Read! Read!! and thanks for hosting this week! :)

Rebecca Herzog said...

Thank you for hosting and I love your Sitting and Writing poem. I feel like that so often and it is so frustrating. You certainly captured that. I love to see your process of pulling poems apart and falling in love with them. Thank you!

jan godown annino said...

The great farmer-bard's well fills me up too, Amy. I am grateful for your sharing these cross-out, word-lists pages. And for the rolling rhythm and sly sharing of your "Sitting and Writing." It's giving me an idea . . .

Birthday balloons for READ!READ!READ!

And appreciations for hosting Poetry Friday in such a nourishing way.

Robyn Hood Black said...

My soul wanders here if my day needs some "brighting" --
The Poem Farm yields a fresh harvest for writing.

Many thanks for hosting, Dear Amy, and big huggy congrats for READ! READ! READ! XO

Buffy Silverman said...

What a wonderful peek into your writing process and how you it came into being from Frost's rhythm and rhyme! Thanks for hosting, and many congrats on Read! Read! Read!'s birth!

Tara Smith said...

Always good to read about the way you are inspired to write and how you think through the process, Amy. Thanks for hosting today, too!

laurasalas said...

I love to try on meters and rhyme schemes that I find--what a funny and lovely poem. Thanks for hosting!

Christie Wyman said...

Greetings, Amy! Happy Book Birthday week to you and Read! Read! Read! So much joy jumping -- NO LEAPING -- off the pages and into my heart and classroom. I am so excited to share our mutual love of reading with my new Kindergarten friends. What a treat to have you welcome all of us into your process -- all the good and all the not-so-good. It's good for all of us to know that when we struggle, published authors and poets struggle, too. Thanks for hosting us on the Farm today and wishing you love and joy from magical Room 1. xx Christie

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

I suppose when you think about it, it shouldn't be surprising that we fall in love with a meter or rhyme scheme. How is it any different really than falling in love with a drum beat or melody? You wrote a wonderful poem, Amy, and how generous of you to show all the scribbling that needs to happen along the way!