Poetry in such an environment becomes dull and tarnished. The fans begin to wander away…
We have lost sight of the fact that we learn to write by reading, listening thinking and writing –and by writing we arrive at understanding.'
I learnt from American poet, Ted Kooser - 'You have to read at least one hundred poems before you write one.' I interpreted this as meaning I had to immerse myself in poetry in order to write it. I have continued to collect poetry throughout my writing life. My collection of poetry continues to expand. It is pleasantly plump and well rounded.
Many teachers tell me they love poetry. That's always a re-assuring thing to hear. I fervently hope they are prepared to put such declarations into action and acquire some poetry books of their own. By doing so, they may joyfully share these poetic pearls with the curious learners in their care. It's action that matters. Every generation deserves to have poetry in their lives. Every generation deserves poetry champions. Champions who shine a light on powerful, wondrous and wacky words as well as thought provoking ideas.
So fellow teachers, if you love poetry, I urge you produce the poetic proof!
'Love of language and a sense of gratitude would be two ingredients in the recipe for making a poet.'
'Each child is born a poet and every poet is a child.'
To finish on a joyful note, I share this poem that emerged in my writer's notebook, just last week.
Pigs Might Fly
Birds fly, so might I
Said the pig…
My word, said the bird
No drama, said the llama
Might take a while, said the crocodile
Up there? said the bear
Is that legal? said the eagle
Dream on, said the swan
Good luck, said the duck
Oh no, said the crow
You won’t get far, said the galah
Better me than you, said the emu
I’m heading for cover, said the plover
It’s hard not to laugh, said the giraffe
Can I come too? said the kangaroo