Miss Sweetmallow said we had to write poetry.
I hate poetry. I like folding my eyelids back so you can see the wet parts underneath. I like playing basketball until I’m dripping in sweat and then shaking my whole body so everybody gets a shower. I even like to risk getting poisoned every month or so and eat the cafeteria’s Swedish meatballs in gravy. Which look like cat hairballs.
“In this unit, you will each write 24 original poems.”
24! I slumped in my chair.
“When you create poems, you can embrace the beauty of language and feel the poem burn deep into your soul.”
I closed my eyes.
When I opened them, Miss Sweetmallow was by my desk. “And,” she said, “You can write them about anything you want.”
I sat up straighter.
“Anything?” I asked.
“Yes, Louis, anything.”
Well. O.K., then.
I was going to make Miss Sweetmallow very, very sorry she made us write poetry.
Louis J. Pasternak
Poetry Assignment #1: Using the 5 Senses
Mom and Dad have lectured:
Do NOT pop this blister
It’s nature’s Band-Aid
so I shut the door
Needle glides in,
pops my blister like a balloon
Liquid gushes out,
floods my thumb
Pale, waxy skin flaps
and waves like a flag
on my thumb
Miss S — Everybody warns you about the stove, but do they bother to mention how hot metal lampshades get? Noooooooooo.
I’m terribly sorry you burned your hand, Louis. Bravissimo for turning your suffering into art!
Miss Sweetmallow didn’t even say anything about my poem being gross. Not a single word! Maybe this was going to be tougher than I thought.
Lovely poet Amy Ludwig VanDerwater is kicking off Poetry Month with the Poetry Friday Roundup. Enjoy!