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It was amazing...

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Thu Nov 18, 2004 5:23 am
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Nate says...

I work with kids a lot. Over the summer, I work at a camp and generally get around 300 kids that I work with pretty closely. During the school year, I work at the local middle school and elementary school doing after-school activities and helping out teachers.

Anyways, today I was doing an after-school activity at an elementary school where you have to draw a picture then write a story about it. This one little girl, though, asked me if she could write a poem instead. I said sure, and let her go on her way expecting the poem to be... well, what you would expect from a third grader.

But she finished her poem, presented it, and I was astounded. It was about a boy she really liked (I don't remember having crushes in third grade...) and the poem was incredible. It was something that I wouldn't even expect a high-school student in AP English to write. Indeed, I would've suspected that she copied it from somewhere except for the fact that I saw her write it. I still simply cannot believe the depth of feeling that was in the poem, the use of alliteration (of all things!), her metaphors, and everything else. There is no way whatsoever that I could write a poem half as good as the one she did.

Well, I'm still in shock over it. I guess you can't judge a poet by their age. I guess poets are born and the rest of us can do no more than admire them. I wouldn't be at all surprised if this little girl grew up to be her generation's Emily Dickinson.
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Thu Nov 18, 2004 5:45 am
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iced.cappuchino says...

No, I think it's true that children's poetry is a lot better than well, er, teen poetry or adult poetry.

My theory on is that children have never learned the "rules" of writing poetry, so they aren't as... restrained? afraid? self-doubting? Their words are more about the emotion, I guess, and less aobut the prestige of writing poetry. *shrugs* My take on it anyway.

When my sister was in fourth or fifth grade, their class projects had been to make a little poetry booklet. I've read, and good gawd, there is some excellent stuff in there.

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Fri Nov 19, 2004 11:01 pm
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Elelel says...

I think also that little kids have less fear of letting other people know about themselves. I know that I do, it's what has kept me from writing poetry for ages.
Oh, you're angry! Click your pen.
--Music and Lyrics

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Sat Nov 20, 2004 5:45 am
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Tessitore says...

I know from knowing many die-hard poets (I am not counted among them, I am a writer) that they are very much more in tune with their "inner child" then anything else. They remain, at best, immature, though they feel deeply and think differently, and are often very smart. Very adventurous. Very striking. I know... I'm dating one. And she's strange. She gets up and does whatever she wants, blast the consequences. Embarrassment does not find itself in her vocabulary. She doesn't feel it at all. Every other emotion she feels with an intensity it's amazing, but she still has the will of a child.

It's interesting, very interesting.
I'm not even angry... I'm being so sincere right now.
Even though you broke my heart.
And killed me... And tore me to pieces.
And threw every piece into a fire.
-"Still Alive"- GLaDOS

You are beautiful because you let yourself feel, and that is a brave thing indeed.
— Shinji Moon