Thursday, March 15, 2007

Write a Poem for Your Child!

I went to a Moms’ Night Out event tonight. My sons’ preschool teacher hosts one at her home about once a month for all the mothers of the children in her classes. We have a great time chatting with each other about our children and comparing notes. Tonight was supposed to be a "Martha Stewart Night," during which each mother shared tips or a particular skill she has. I had a tough time coming up with an idea because I am not very domestic. Of course, I cook and clean and mend and all that stuff, but I just don’t enjoy them! I do the job and get it over with, so I didn’t have any great ideas to share in those areas. What I do know about, though, is writing, so I decided to teach the other moms how to write a short poem for their children that they can put in their baby books, scrapbooks, etc.

Do you remember learning how to write haiku poems sometime during your school career? This type of poem, born in Japan, is very simple. It consists of only three lines: The first line must have 5 syllables; the second line must have 7 syllables; and the third line must have 5 syllables. It sounds easy, but it’s a little trickier than you’d think! Most traditional haiku poems are about something from nature and are designed to provoke some sort of emotion or stirring of the senses for the reader. (For instance, it may describe the blowing of the wind through the trees.) My idea, however, was to take a dominant personality trait exhibited by our children and create a poem around it. Years later, I surmised, we’d read it and it would remind us, "Oh, yeah, remember how Molly used to love to pretend she was a ballerina!"

So give it a try. Here are three separate haiku poems that I wrote about my three-year-old twins. I think you’ll get an accurate picture of their similarities and differences!

Twins are little imps
From room to room they destroy
All things in their path

Austen is "all boy"
Ball-kicking, finger-licking,
Messy-faced angel

A book in his lap
Is all Caleb needs to have
To make him happy

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