Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I wrote a poem

So, clearly the "poem a day" thing didn't last too long here. I went back and tagged the early posts with "poetry" in addition to "poem a day," as well as the successive randomly-posted poems, too. Poems by other people are tagged as "guest poets."

Here is one I wrote for my class of 7th-graders for our Africa unit. They've read and researched about some pretty hardcore stuff, both on the internet and in books, and in poem form. I consciously included specific figurative language like similes, onomatapoeia, and sensory detail; also, I used some different line breaks and punctuation to show them the possibilities for writing poetry are nearly endless.


My tongue is swollen,
my throat as dry as the desert all around me.
When there is water to drink
in careful, slow drips,
it only makes my insides twist and cramp
until I hurt too much
to even cry.

I am small,
too small to fight for food.
Other children, bigger children, shout and push and
scramble to pick
or a flaky tree root
from the earth,
(earth: Mother,
and gobble them down.
I only watch and wither away,
my belly growing bigger each day.

My parents: dead.
no prayers or spells
or medicine
(if we could buy it)
could have saved them.
My sister: dead.
I carried her everywhere,
her little legs too tiny,
like dried twigs,
to walk.
One day her rattling breath stopped, and
I put her down
and didn't look back.

What would have been the point?

I am a bubble on the surface
of a cup
of water,
dirty and sickly.
A bubble too small
and insignificant
to notice.
I live only a moment,


I am gone.

1 comment:

missdonna said...

It's so hard to think of this. Usually as soon as the picture of these children come on t.v. or into my mind, I quickly turn them off. I know, denial. Does writing about it help you or make it worse? Your poem leaves a picture in my mind of the sadness in the world that I can't help. :(