Archive for May 24th, 2013

Poetry Friday is hosted this week at Jama's Alphabet Soup.

Poetry Friday is hosted this week at Jama’s Alphabet Soup.

The end of the school year is always bittersweet. This year was especially so. One of my students finished sixth grade which means she is moving on to middle school. We have been together since she was in third grade. I love all my students, but sometimes one comes along who connects a little deeper. We become more than teacher and student. Kaylie is one of those students. Kaylie loves what I love. We shared books and favorite authors. We became writing partners. She read and commented on my writing as much as I did hers.

Kaylie’s mother wrote me a note saying that Kaylie was crying about leaving. She told Kaylie that I was like a mother bird that has prepared her birds to fly. It was time for her to fly. Kaylie stopped crying and said, “That was a great metaphor, Mom.”

I am so grateful for this special relationship. Kaylie wrote a poem for me. She put it in a book she made on Snapfish including pictures of us through the years. (Yes, I cried.) I wrote a response to her using her form. I put it into an accordion book, also with pictures. Call and response, so to speak. These poems are very personal, so I hesitated printing them here. But sometimes the deeply personal touches a universal theme.

What if
By Kaylie
What if you asked me-
just wondering-
If you wanted me to write
about our four years together?
What if you wanted me
to put that into a poem
Like the one you’re reading now?
Would I write about peanut butter,
nonsense talking sticking in my mouth
like the real stuff?
Or, that dreaded summer reading?
Would I tell you that I hated that?
Would I remember Daisy and Poncho,
the most beautiful spider story
I have ever heard?
Hmm…let me think…
I would definitely have to mention
all that writing: stories, poetry,
every letter, every word from my pen
inspired by you.
I would try not to talk about the tears
that shed when I left, though.
I will only think of what you showed me,
and how I will use it in my life.
If you told me to write a poem about all of that,
just to remind you of me now and then,
I think this poem
would do just that.

By Kaylie

What if?
What if you wanted me to write a poem
about our four years together?
Four years, really? Hard to believe.
No wonder you are so much a part of my life.

I know you. You know me.
Greater than a teacher and student,
yet not a mother and daughter.
(Even though I caught myself sometimes calling you my daughter.)
My poem would have to say how
teaching you was easy, fun, delightful.
I watched you blossom from a tiny, shy seed
to a dancing flower singing,

“Anything you can do, I can do better.”

And yes, you can. You can be
whatever you want to be.
Be who you are.

You are a writing teacher’s dream,
but more than that…
You trusted me with your heart,
your mind, your creativity.

If you wanted me to write a poem about our time together,
I would write through tears,
wipe them away
and say
You are ready
to fly,
sweet bird.
Your wings will
–Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

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