Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Poem #9 - A Gift

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.

A New Stuffed Dog
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 3 to work with over the next thirty days.

There is a part of me that wants to rush through this story, to know what happens, to be able to tell you what happens.  But then, there are snips of time that cannot, will not be skipped by.  This is John's first night without Betsy. These first 9 days of poems have taken place over the course of 1 fictional day.  And tomorrow we will be 1/3 of the way through National Poetry Month. 

I am partly sorry for this sadness over so many days, but sadness is a true part of life, and in writing about it, I hope to honor it as a real feeling.  And too, I could not be honest and change what has happened in these poems.  I am simply writing the story.  I am listening to the story, and I am writing the whispers I hear in the secret rooms of my heart.

As you can imagine, I will be planning.  What will happen over the next 21 days of April?

The last 2 lines of this poem repeat I toss...but the meaning is different each time. Did you notice?

(Some of you know this, but I will mention it now just the same.  I do not have a television and do not play any video games nor do I watch violent movies.  This is a choice, a choice to stay as sensitive as I can.)

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 comments and will draw one name each Thursday evening, to be announced each Friday of the month. To be entered into these drawings, please do 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. I’m never sure where the next day will take us. Yep, a stuffed puppy is not going to help.

  2. I love that you share how you maintain your humanity by living in the real world, minus tv, violent movies and video games. Promoting acceptance of all feelings is an important part of being full human. Thank you for the gift, my friend!

  3. That first night, little will help the sadness. You've written it true, Amy.

  4. Each day I can't wait to see what happens next. Thank you for staying true to John and Betsy's story, allowing it to unfold in its own way and time.

  5. My heart hurts for John, so much that it's hard to come read each day's offering. Thanks for telling this story, Amy, since we know stories are not always easy.

  6. Amy, poor little John, I feel for him on the first night away from his Betsy. In a few words you manage to convey John's frustration and hurt.