Happy Poetry Friday! Welcome, everyone! (Wondering what Poetry Friday is? Click here.)
So, this month, our Poetry Princess challenge was a byr a thoddaid, a Welsh form. Last Thursday, my husband and I went on a road trip to see Tears for Fears in Chicago! Awesome concert. On the way, I wrote or worked on several poems for various things, including the poem for today. I don’t know exactly why this topic came to me, except that several friends have received scary medical news, either about themselves or family members, recently. I wanted to write from a child’s point of view, so I decided it would be a child in a family waiting to hear news about a mom, who’s ill.
Here’s what I came up with, and a few process notes follow the poem:
I knew I wanted two rhyming pairs, and “sick” immediately came to mind. I wrote the final, 6‑syllable line first. I liked the feeling of dread and suspense. In thinking about how the time waiting for medical news is worse (for me, anyway) than at least getting an answer, I thought of time freezing and flying by. So then I wrote the third line, which is 10 syllables and has the rhyme for the last line in the 8th syllable.
Now…how to set up this moment? I was thinking of my own childhood and my husband’s, too. Back then, phones had cords…sometimes very long cords, so you could carry the phone with you, around the corner and down the dark hall to try to have at least a semi-private conversation. So I decided to use the words “hall” and “call.” I didn’t want to date the experience by identifying corded phones, etc., but I thought a parent trying to have a quiet conversation in a house busy with kids might slip down the hall. And those kids might huddle near the doorway, trying to find out what’s going on. Here’s the longhand draft, and I added 1st, 2nd, etc., to show the order of writing and the revision I made to the first line. I notice I also changed “And” to “Then” at the start of the last line.
Our live write was on Father’s Day, and Randy and I were out kite flying and identifying stuff in the Seek app. So, I have no idea what anybody has come up with! I’ll add links as they’re available, though!
Click here to see all our previous Poetry Princesses collaborations.
The wonderful Catherine Flynn at Reading to the Core has the Poetry Friday Roundup this week, plus a fabulous abecedarian poem of teaching!