Words on the Page
Words on a page. Lines in a notebook. Paragraphs in a novel. Phrases in old texts. My mind has been papered with words this week. Working with words made my week so much more interesting. For some reason, I feel more connected to myself. More connected to the world of words and writing and books.
A New Word a Day
Skulk. Abscond. Adscititious. Deleterious. Pell-mell. Our words of the day in class this past week. They are excellent words to play with and they’re fun to say. Word choice is about selecting the just right word to fit an idea, the tone,or a sentence. I know my class is hooked on Word of the Day because I see it in their faces. I see my enthusiasm and my love for word play reflected back at me. I know how exciting it is for them when someone in class shows true appreciation for their use of the new word. Crafting sentences and experimenting with words is part of how we learn to write and it is the part that I find particularly enjoyable.
Reading and Writing with Friends
I realized how much my life is becoming connected to writing when I was working in a café with a friend. We were talking about all sorts of things, bouncing ideas back and forth, and looking over some writing samples together. The more we talked about the structure of the piece, the characters, and the phrasing in the story, the more I valued that moment. It is a humbling and cool experience to be asked to discuss someone’s writing. It is like a book club meeting but a meeting where you are sitting with the author and they are inviting your opinions and feedback. Being on the inside of the creation process makes you appreciate the work, skill, and talent that goes in to a published story.
All week long my mind has been focused on words. Learning words. Reading words. Playing with words. Writing words. But, also, finding words, specifically finding poetry in the pages of an abandoned book. I separated the pages of a ripped discarded library book that I rescued from a recycling bin. These pages were given a new chance at life. Using a few samples from the internet and little else in way of guidelines or instructions, I asked my students to find the poem that was hiding on their page from the book. Poems sprang up everywhere. Kids were eager to share. There was no pressure for them to come up with writing or words that fit because it was all there in front of them. I sat and made Found Poetry with them. Tonight, I sat in my living room finding more poems and my daughter and husband joined in. Here are two of mine, just for fun.
Poem # 1
It is kindest to go away.
I have never forgotten –
You betrayed a great trust.
I don’t know if you can understand that.
Be careful, then.
There is a fierceness to the power in the sword.
Poem # 2
Looking for her,
Never a word in return,
No sound anywhere.
The wind an empty whine in my ears.
She went away forever and took a part of me with her.