Spiders, Black Ants and Poetry

By on September 26, 2012

My illustrator came home from school boasting of how neat he had rewritten a piece of prose for school. Usually, we go round and round about writing, handwriting, that is. “The h’s have to be as tall as the L’s – which need to reach to the top of the line – if not, the h’s will look like n’s, the d’s like a’s and the L’s might just look like an i missing the dot.”

He isn’t bothered by h’s that look like n’s or d’s that look like a’s.

When we got home, he pulled out his prose – and the handwriting was nicely done, though he doesn’t want the L’s, H’s, backs of the d’s and b’s, f’s and L’s (plus all capitals) to reach to the top of the line. It can’t be psycho-symbolic about him being the smallest of the blue cotton brotherhood – because too many of his tall brothers truncate letter size. The letters were neat, even, in-control, filled with pride about the words they made – words my illustrator put together to paint a word picture.

fall scents for your home

It was written in 5 paragraphs – covering much of the front and back of the blue-lined paper. When he typed it onto the computer screen, he was dismayed that it didn’t fill the page. He also had to turn paragraph poetry into standard prose with complete sentences. Lots of verbs were added and galloping away sentences were reigned in with periods. His ideas were dressed up with suit-and-tie proper capitalization with wing-tip endings.

Thank you size 14 fonts for allowing him to make his ideas be as big as he imagined. He searched the styles, settling happily for Brush Script. He printed one for him and a New Times Roman for his teacher – and turned all of them in – the paragraph poetry, the well-dressed prose – and the well-dressed prose jazzed up with a funky font.

My favorite draft was the original, the paragraph poetry. Poor little poetry in a paragraph – nobody wants to leave it alone. I wanted you to read it as I read it, pause where I paused, tumble along with the cadence he created and I so loved from someone I so love – who turned 12 on the first day of Autumn.

Original “Day in the Woods”

by the little illustrator

“Crackle, Crackle –as I walk into the old, lively forest
I see different types of trees.
I see dead leafs everywhere
Green, orange, red,
Even some orange and red
Some were high up
In the sky
Some were down low
Leafs that are falling Down
Go down slowly like an
Air balloon running out
Of hot air.
I feel the leafs
Like a brick wall
Big leafs
Small leafs
And even torn leafs

As I swat the flies
One by one I see twigs and broken twigs
Like crabs on the floor.
Small trees and tall trees everywhere
I look
I smell the trees
They smelled like dirt.
As I go to sit on the log a lot of lively things
I see
Plants everywhere but the little spot
I see

As I breathe the free air
Chirp Chirp
I hear birds chirping like they are scared
By a beast
I sniff again
I smell dirt like the dirt was rising up
I see
Roots overlapping roots
As if they were fighting
I feel
The log I’m sitting on
It feels like wrinkly clothes

As I walk to another log
I see
Two ants fighting to live.
The black ant trying
To defend
the littler ant tries
To have food to live
By eating the big black ant.
They fight on until
Steps on them.
I see
The ants squashed
Like a pancake
But still I look around

I see
Spiders floating away on its web
I see
Big plants covering seeds
On the ground
I hope
We come back soon
It’s peaceful
I can’t wait till next time

Come back Monday for the Story Behind the Poem: Reading Blessing like Poetry

To read A Birthday Prayer, click here


Originally posted on Blue Cotton Memory.

About Maryleigh

Maryleigh is a child of divorce become whole as daughter of The King. Married for 27 years, mother of 5 boys to men, she has been a college composition instructor, teaching college-bound composition to homeschool students, journalist and freelance writer/editor. Maryleigh is the author of Blue Cotton Memory, a blog about the faith, love and politics of raising boys to men and creator of Standing at the Cross Roads, a program designed for teens and college students to break/prevent cycles of dysfunction by understanding the gifts and plans God has each of us. Her website: http://bluecottonmemory.wordpress.com.

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Spiders, Black Ants and Poetry