In May, an English Language Arts teacher of the 9th and 10th grade in rural Japan challenged The Poetry Pub Writing Community on Facebook, of which I am a member, to create a poem and video from the prompt “Where Poetry Waits for Me.” We were to then send our contributions to her, and she would show them to her class, and then have her class write poems in response to the same prompt, following our examples. The teacher said she wanted to do this because her students were still having trouble grasping just how exactly to write poetry. Whether our examples helped enlighten anything, I do not know! Regardless, here is the poem and video I provided them:
“Where Poetry Waits for Me”
A Shakespearean Sonnet by Ethan McGuire
Where poetry waits for me—along the streams
Of images and words, of meaning vast,
Of one brief phrase containing all my dreams
And pictures pure whose worths are unsurpassed—
Good Mother Nature offers water, cold,
Which fades out of my cup unless I thirst
To be renewed by memories untold,
Thoughts Nature holds within: God made her first.
Yet if I come to take a prize of song,
To harvest memories for just my words,
The streams will dry and tell me I am wrong
For visiting with my mind thus deterred . . .
Still, all my purposes are hard to know,
And poetry’s waters wind beyond my woe.