Monday, April 22, 2019

Poem #22 - Meeting

Welcome to my 2019 National Poetry Month Project

Each day of April, I will write and share a new (first person, free verse, fewer than 15 lines not including spacing) poem. Taken together, these will tell a story about John and Betsy, two characters I posted about on March 22.  This will be new for me, and I invite anyone who wishes to join me in writing a collection of 30 poems that tell a story.

Here is a list of this month's poems so far:

And's poem.

Tree, Sun, Pie, Cookies
by Amy LV

Students - This month's poems will tell a story about John and Betsy, and all of the poems will have three things in common: each will be written in John's voice, each will be 15 lines or shorter (not including spacing), and each will be written in free verse. I find it helpful to set writing boundaries for myself, so I chose three to work with over the next 30 days.  But sometimes, friends, I am breaking these rules.  Rules can help a project, and they can also hinder it.  So I begin with these rules, and then I listen to each poem and what it desires to be.  When given a writing choice between listening to a poem and listening to a rule, I usually listen to the poem.

Today's poem sets a scene and shares a wee story.  Of course John's parents needed to meet Miss Betsy, so I wanted to show this. However, sometimes when grownups talk, children often want to play.  As do dogs.  This why John and Betsy have a park adventure; it is not important for us to know what the grownups say during this meeting, but if we wish, we can imagine.

As these days of April draw to a close, I am unsure of what will happen with John and Betsy and Miss Betsy.  I do not know much more than you know.  Each day, I listen to these characters.  They feel real to me, and I love them.  I close my eyes, I watch them in my mind, and I write what I see.  I trust that I will figure it out. And though I am often a little nervous and scared that I will not figure it out, I still close my eyes.  I still listen.  I still write.  For the words are here, my trust is here, and you are here.

And if it doesn't work...that's why we revise!  

Each Friday of National Poetry Month, Heinemann has generously offered to gift a copy of my book POEMS ARE TEACHERS to someone who has commented during the week.  This book includes over 150 poems by contemporary poets and students alike as well as over 50 poem explorations written by me. I will keep track of weekly comments and will draw one final winning name this Thursday, to be announced on Friday. To be entered , please leave a way to contact you along with your comment.  And...Heinemann is offering 40% of all poetry professional books throughout April...thank you Heinemann!

If you would like to learn more about other National Poetry Month projects happening throughout the Kidlitosphere, Jama has rounded up many NPM happenings over at Jama's Alphabet Soup.  Happy National Poetry Month 2019!

See you tomorrow!


Please share a comment below if you 


  1. I love watching this story unfold. I've wondered, for a while about your process, whether you had all of the different pieces laid out, so you would have exactly thirty days. I can't wait to see where John and Betsy take you over the next eight days.

  2. It makes me happy to see John and his parents and Miss Betsy getting to be friends.

  3. I absolutely love how you have no real idea where it is going. I can't wait to try this and try this with kids. I love the sort of "no pressure" a poem a day might bring for kids, too. And me. The heart in this poem, your wise word choices, resonate so deeply for me. And your honesty about the process and your choices.I love "her nose is awake" and all her sniffs, genius. Another gem en route. And I love how you have limited this to 30 poems, so there is closure coming. And of course then there is revision. I can't wait until this gem is in print, I just know that is going to happen. Janet Clare F. (PS I am so glad you are making my predictions come true. I am sure I am not alone.)

  4. These lines need to be read fast. I can hear John's happy voice as he romps with Betsy! Hurrah! It is hard to know what will happen at the end. Endings aren't always what we want them to be. Thanks, Amy, wonderful to read this!

  5. Such a feel good poem as the new relationships are forged. I can just feel John and Betsy's exhilaration.

  6. What a journey we're traveling with you and John and Betsy and now Miss Betsy too! I love how you close your eyes to listen and write their story every day. And my favorite line today? "Sun warms her fur and my hair."

  7. Every day I can't wait to see what happens next. You have me thinking quite a bit about poems that tell stories.

  8. I love how you captured Betsy's exuberance for sniffing! Looking forward to tomorrow's installment of this adventure!

  9. Amy, today's poem shares a joyous meet-up. I like this new relationship and look forward to the next poem.