Wednesday, April 13, 2011

If They Were Songs

each one is a little different
having its own
strengths and challenges

some just show up
whole and ready
and want to be left alone

others need to be trimmed a bit
so eyes can see
and ears can hear

still others just need more
structure and support
a guiding hand

some play the cello
others the oboe
some a drum kit without cymbals

some lead off the album
some end up as b-sides
some never make it past a demo

some are serious
some are silly
all are sound

* * * * *

This poem was written in response to the prompt at We Write Poems to "write a poem about writing a poem".


  1. It's funny, you are writing about writing a poem, but I kept picturing students. It works both ways. Well written piece, Mr. Walker!


  2. "all are sound" great! And having spent 20 years in the classroom, I would also agree with Brenda. :) Good one!

  3. Anonymous7:01 AM

    I like the size of the stanzas, the seeming simplicity. And the two stanzas with the music metaphors are great. I am having fun with the instruments as metaphor.

  4. Must be one of the top ten I've read today!

  5. Anonymous8:29 AM

    I too, kept seeing bright eyed children. And that makes a lot of sense to me, as I often call my poems, my babies. Thanks for this one, seemingly simple, but far from it,


  6. If they were songs, your poems would have made you a mega-star by now sir!

  7. Anonymous7:53 PM

    Some of us have a lot of "b sides"! One day, maybe I'll be seen on the flip side! :) Nicely done, Mr. Walker!

  8. Anonymous8:50 PM

    @Brenda W: I thought exactly the same thing: Mr. W. talking about students! But when you think about it, our poems are like our children. They teach us as much as we teach them. This was lovely!

    (off-prompt poem)

  9. I thought of students, too, Mr. Walker, but of course it could be about our poems. We do try to nourish and bring them to life.


  10. Brenda, thank you. You got it. Songs were my metaphor for poems, but the songs were students too.

    Gloria, glad you liked that last line. I'm hoping it's the triple entendre I wanted it to be.

    Margoroby, thank you. I hadn't really realized it until you pointed it out, but the first four stanzas are all self-contained, each one about a particular type of poem/song/student, while in the next two, each line is like that. Thank you, I take "seeming simplicity" as high praise.

    Wow, Stan. Wow! Thank you. (I'm speechless).

    Elizabeth, thank you for your kind words. I was happy to share this one.

    SweetTalkingGuy, you do talk sweet. Thanks so much; your comment made me laugh.

    whenwordsescape, yes, I've shared some b-sides already this month, and I've got some demos I'm embarrassed to show to anyone.

    Amy, thank you. You're absolutely right. I've learned a lot from my students, just as I've learned a lot from writing poems. I will treasure "lovely"; I don't often get that compliment for my poems.

    Pamela, yes, we do. And sometimes we succeed in giving them life enough to go out on their own - poems and children. And I think they nourish us in return.