Archive for May 6th, 2014

  Join the Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Challenge.



Acadiana Wordlab keeps me in touch with my creative side. This weekend Clare Martin led us in a mysterious exercise. Well, she touted it as a mysterious exercise. In truth, she led us in open-ended prompts.

For our first round of writing, she had us each choose a page of the newspaper. I grabbed an article about Hydrilla, a plant that is invading local marshes. I was fascinated by the article and learned about this intrusive species as well as about the mythical creature for which it is named. My poem is more of a found poem, reworking words from the article. I can see this activity working in the classroom, finding poetry in the news.



Hydra, that nine-headed creature,
kept growing heads—two
for every one cut off.

This monster invaded the lake years ago
choking waterways, native plants,
and your boat’s propeller.

Beware! it grows over
and under the swamp, a nuisance,
a bother, a downright sore oppressor.

There is a plan from the parish president
to lower the level of water
dry out the hellacious suckers.

“Time to nurture kindness
to our natural ecosystem, to restore
the old cycle of flood to dry-bed.”

Don’t let your heart bleed
for this monstrous water weed.
Just allow the soft earth to learn

from her mistakes,
To chop off its head and wait
with a hatchet in hand to catch
the two growing back.

–Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

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