Monday, April 29, 2019

Poem #29 - Important Mail from John

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.

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 links back to Day 8, when we read John's poem, to be hung on Betsy's cage, addressed to Betsy's future owner.  Time has passed, and John and Miss Betsy (and Betsy) have shared many memories as well as many poems over the weeks and months.  It was time for John to write another poem, this time wrapping up the story, explaining everything to the good people at the animal shelter.

Again, you will notice repetition, not within this poem, but between this poem and others.

One more day.

Thank you to Heinemann for giving away several copies of my book during this National Poetry Month.  Please know that all Heinemann poetry titles are still 40% off...through tomorrow!

If you would like catch up on other National Poetry Month projects happening throughout the Kidlitosphere, Jama has rounded up many NPM happenings over at Jama's Alphabet Soup.  Happy last two days of National Poetry Month 2019!

See you tomorrow!


Please share a comment below if you 


  1. "But sometimes life is dark then light.
    That's why I write a poem tonight."
    Thanks for these lines, and for John's and Betsy's and Miss Betsy's story.

  2. I love how things have turned out. John can still be with Betsy + now he has a new friend!!

  3. It is a satisfying end, as John wrote, 'It's bittersweet. More sweet." All through the days I've especially liked that John is in charge, interacting, writing, speaking his feelings. That is empowering! Thanks for all, Amy!

  4. "Life is dark then light" is exactly right! This is such a satisfying (near) ending, Amy. Thank you for sharing John and Betsy with us!

  5. John is an amazing little boy with wisdom and a gentle heart. Thinking back on the sad moments and the happy ones when John meets Betsy and has a new friend, Miss Betsy. Beautiful lines:
    "But sometimes life is dark then light.
    That's why I write a poem tonight."
    But I also like, "My family was a little poor."
    Great job, Amy. Thanks for joining me tonight at #NYEDChat.