Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Poetry Loves Trouble

I'm going to be teaching again, after lots of years not teaching. I've been at home with my babies, cooking up poems in my head, working on plays, daydreaming about words, wishing (sometimes) I could be out here again, with you. I feel lucky. I am enamoured by the young and their mysterious voices. It might be because I am a sucker for the unexpected, for variety and veracity in diction and syntax. I'm also charmed by risk, passion, curiosity. As an adult I own certain things, but children, children utterly possess and grip everything around them. Kids make great poems. When I visit the classrooms they sit in I am always surprised, enriched and improved as a writer. Kids see things freshly. Sometimes the beauty and complexity of their observations surfaces. I see how sensitive they are. I love working with children and poetry because the struggle with language so often mirrors our larger human struggle to see, to understand, to love, to be.

Poems dream of order, or else dream of unravelling whatever might be too neat and tidy. Children do well at both of these things. 

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