Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Poem #23 - Holding On & Letting Go

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 now...today's poem.

Big Rain Boots
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 I played with beginning each of the first three stanzas with a very short line.  While this is a free verse poem, you can feel a bit of structure with this repeated short/long/long line set up. The last stanza breaks this pattern as last lines often do.

Sometimes in a poem, as in life, words unspoken are just as important - or more important - as words spoken. Which words might I have chosen to leave out here? Does it matter if we know exactly what these might even be?  

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 wish.day 


  1. A new character? Maybe it’s the title of the poem that has me a bit worried about what will happen next.

  2. Oh, the mystery! You've left us wondering and wondering, Amy, a nice turn in the story.

  3. Who's here? Miss Betsy's son? What's happening? Today's poem leaves us with many questions.

  4. I have an uneasy feeling about those boots! The suspense is too much to bear!

  5. Audra, a first grade student from Mrs. C. Jones' class in Hilton wrote a poem about stars. We are truly enjoying the Poem Farm each day at QUEST Elementary. We can't wait to hear the rest of the story poem about John and Betsy. We were sad and now we are excited to see what adventure John and Betsy have with Miss Betsy. Amy, you inspired Audra to write her own poem. Here it is . . .

    One Star, One Star

    One star, one star
    I love stars!

    Stars are bright, bright, bright, bright!

    Stars are shiny, shiny.
    Stars help you see in the night!

    1. Audra, Your poem makes me happy to think about our night sky so full of many bright, helpful, shiny stars! I love stars too, and I love poems about stars. I hope you enjoy writing poems for your whole life. xx, Amy

  6. ...and where are they going??? Can't wait to find out.