Poetry Friday: An Attempt
May 12, 2006
Well, I tried. We were on such a roll two weeks ago that I got carried away. On Wednesday Junior (my 6-year-old son) and I were having a lovely time of it, reading many books (and only one on jellyfish) at snack time, when I blew it. I up and fetched the From Sea to Shining Sea anthology of Americana and started to read "Listen, my children, and you shall hear/Of the midnight ride of Paul Revere." Things skidded to a halt when I read the word "belfry," but it may also have been at "aloft." ("Hang a lantern aloft in the belfry arch.")
When I found From Sea to Shining Sea at a book sale last summer (for only $5!), I pictured Junior and me, a la Norman Rockwell, revelling in our nation's history. I did not picture Junior sighing, "Mom, no" and walking over and gently closing the book on my lap. Quickly I flipped it back open and pointed to an illustration, "Ooooh, look at this cool old ship," but that was a desperate measure. And it did not work.
So, we moved on, and went outside and did a lot of digging. We planted a lilac bush, an unexpected gift from a friend. I thought of Poetry Friday and "When lilacs last in the door-yard bloom'd" (that's all I know of it), but knew to let the moment just be when we stood back and admired our rather handy spade work. Tonight I'll be reading From Sea to Shining Sea. By myself.
For some actual poems, check the list at the blog A Chair, A Fireplace and A Tea Cozy.
Your experience does not seem at all familiar to me.
Not one bit.
Posted by: Chris Barton | May 13, 2006 at 07:42 AM
Darn it. I knew we were the only ones.
Posted by: Susan | May 13, 2006 at 12:23 PM
Aw...Cute story, though, Susan :)
Posted by: Kelly | May 15, 2006 at 11:40 AM
I love this honesty. To me it has always had to be an absolute match of mood and personality to get my sons involved in poetry. We've had some big successes and some HUGE flops. You're quite brilliant to just move on and read it yourself - his time for it will come.
Posted by: Lucie | May 16, 2006 at 05:36 AM
I don't know how old your son is, but when I was a child hearing "aloft" and "belfry" would have caused me much joy ! But I've always had sprachgefuhl...
Posted by: Michele Fry | May 16, 2006 at 02:46 PM
He's 6. The words he loves are the various synonyms for "rear end."
Posted by: Susan | May 16, 2006 at 05:17 PM
thank you. Mood and personality are key, aren't they? Through a Washington Post review, I found a book of poems about fire and warmth. When the time is right, I may try that one, but will read it first myself!
Posted by: Susan | May 17, 2006 at 08:50 AM