Today I bring you two poems with a family theme.
The first of these two poems is one that I wrote a few weeks ago. For this poem, I visited the non-rhyming poem (although there are some near-rhymes) as the poem just seemed to come out that way. When writing non-rhyming poems, I always have a repeated line or structure. In this case, the format of each verse is very similar, each starting with “Home is…” and then “We can….” on the next line, with “and…” on the following line. “We can…” and “And..” are then repeated, and then a new verse starts so the pattern starts again.
The most difficult verse proved to be the final verse. I had in my mind the line about letting the curtain down, like in a theatre, and the mask line went well with it, but then struggled to think of the final two lines. I decided to start from scratch and that’s when I came up with the final two lines, “We can be who we are and not who we will never be.” Then I had the idea of combining this with the curtain and mask lines, as you see it now. It’s funny how it all comes together in the end. I wanted to finish with a “home is ….” line.
The poem was inpired by the feeling I have when I’m home and safe indoors. The youngest plays up a bit when we are out and about and it is almost like I have to second guess his actions. Trips out can be a bit wearing at times, with him refusing to walk, sitting on the floor, etc… At home, we can be ourselves. I don’t have to worry about judging eyes and the boys play quite happily. We can be calm and relaxed. Don’t get me wrong, I do like taking them out and about, and we have some great outings, but it is at home that I believe I truly find my inner peace.
The next poem was inspired by some garden time I had with the boys last Sunday. The boys both love bubbles and we had a lovely time in the garden, with the eldest blowing them and the youngest trying to pop them. I then had the idea of writing a poem about the experience and I started to compose the poem throughout the afternoon.
I actually composed the verses slightly out of sequence. After the third verse, I composed the sixth verse: “Some bubbles are big, others quite small….” Then I wanted to write about each of the brothers’ experience, so I came up with the verses in between, then finally onto the seventh verse, about our eldest. He complained a bit that his hands were slimy but was happy to carry on, but did ultimately pass the wand on to me. The final verse is one I struggled with a little. What is it with me and final verses? I guess it is just a matter of wanting to close off properly and not sound too cliche. I got there in the end though.
I hope you all enjoyed both offerings today.
In My Notebook
This week, my notebook was a mixed affair.
Finishing my “Bubbles” Poem
When you are struggling, there is nothing like a quick planning session in your notebook! I will remember this next time, as it was very useful. Just to write down some lines to try them out was a massive help. I liked the line “With bubbles…… you can’t go wrong,” and I did have “With bubbles and sunshine you can’t go wrong,” but in the end I changed it, as you don’t necessarily need sunshine. I also knew I wanted something about everyone getting along but I was looking for the right line. With a bit of thinking time with my notebook, I came up with a final verse that I was happy with. I needed the final line to be long enough to keep to the rhythm of the line before.
Future Poem Topics
The reason why I didn’t write many parenting/family poems for a while was that I didn’t really take the time to think of the topics, thinking that I had covered many topics and “how could I come up with new ones?” The answer may well lie in sitting down, as I did last week, and listing some possible topics for future poems. This pushed the topics to the forefront of my mind and, this time, I made sure I recorded them for future reference. When I remember to write down ideas for possible topics, these ideas often end up in random places within my phone’s notebook. At least now, these ideas are in my actual notebook so they will be easy to find. I only thought of a few ideas but it was a start. “Tantrums and strong wills” and “Julia Donaldson” were part of this list. I fully intend to make use of the notebook in this way in the future.
Following my interest in water features, which came to the surface in my last freewriting session (see last week’s blog post), I decided to do a bit of imagination work and let the ideas flow. I usually use a picture to spark my imagination but, this time, I am trying to manage without. (I say trying as I don’t think the process is complete yet.) This is something I should do a lot more often and I’m not sure if it will lead me to a story or a poem, but I am going to carry on. I had already started, one night, imagining a body of water and, eventually, an island on that body of water and a castle on that island, but hadn’t got any further as my thoughts were interrupted. I decided to continue, asking myself questions, imagining the scene bit-by-bit. Now I have a castle with gems inside, guarded by a queen. In the castle, there are pipes to climb up and down and, at this point, I realised I had been influenced by my boys’ newfound interest in Mario games! This continued when I imagined a pipe leading to an underworld. I will continue at another time, but again, a very beneficial exercise.
So that rounds it up for this week. Thank you so much for reading.
Next week I hope to have a couple of new fantasy poems for you. Will they be related to the aformentioned imagination session? You’ll have to wait and see.