Poetry as Therapy

No need for much commentary on this one. I’ll let Claire do the talking in the short video above left– I hope it works here!

The second graders recently did a poetry project, in which they wrote a poem, made a multimedia presentation about it– including a computer animation– and presented it to an audience of parents one morning last week. Claire had warned me to bring Kleenex, because one of the girls in her class cried when she read it during her dress rehearsal. (I now love that little girl!) But don’t worry– I’m not going to talk about Gus for the 512th time here. I still miss him and my left ventricle (the part of my heart he took with him). Every. Single. Day.

But let’s talk about something else for a minute. Seems I really can’t be content with just posting the video. How about how most of the poetry jam poems were about favorite trees, soccer goals, vacations, or even a kid’s bedroom. But not Claire– she had to go for the emotional topic. Yes, my Claire is dramatic– maybe sometimes melodramatic. She takes after her mama. She really feels things– the happy and the sad– and somehow doesn’t have the capacity to just dismiss it and get on with whatever. I understand that, even when I lose patience with sudden and severe tears over something I thought we’d finished with, or something that doesn’t seem so terrible to me. Her heart is really, really tender.

It could be because her imagination is bigger than all of her imaginary kingdoms put together. Before you can even finish a thought, she has peopled the scenario with characters and emotions, and is running the simulation in her mind. It’s not that dissimilar, one could argue, from someone with a gift for numbers– the ability to go straight through an equation and understand the logical ins and outs before the other people in the room have figured out how to write it down. Only with numbers we consider it genius, while with imagination, we tend to consider it frivolous and self-indulgent. As if numbers are somehow more righteous than feelings.

Just the other day I overheard her improvising a conversation between Anne Shirley (of Green Gables), Hermione Granger, and (probably) Barbie. I wish I could tell you the gist of the conversation, but all I could pick out in the few moments I was nearby was the identity of the characters (and that they were at one point talking about Ruby Gillis– I know I heard that, as well). But really, think about the little mind that puts those three characters together for a tete-a-tete! Now I want to hear what they would say to one another. And I can tell you for damn certain I’ve never wondered so much about how 9 and 7 and pi might interact with one another.

Although now I’m curious. But only if we give them personalities first. Do you think pi is a boy or a girl?

10 thoughts on “Poetry as Therapy

  1. And now I have waterfalls as well.So sweet…definitely a chip off the ole block.And btw, I never could get the page to load correctly with Mozilla, but when I switched to Chrome, I didn’t have any trouble.  If any other pc users have trouble, they might try a different browser.

  2. Thanks for the Chrome tip, Natalie!  I’m glad you both were able to view it.  It doesn’t always all download for me, so I’m sure it’s not working for everyone.  Maybe that will improve when I *eventually* shift the blog to a new platform…Happy Monday to everyone!

  3. Since I’m at work, I can’t risk viewing the video now, but I know how very smart and wonderful my little Claire is.  Fascinating to think about those characters together and what in the world the conversation would be.  I think Anne and Hermione are giving Barbie fashion tips.  Namely – cover yourself up Woman!!!  Can you tell I have boys?  🙂  Personally, I think Pi is a boy.  Just throwing that out there.

  4. Added by Natalie, March 20, 2012:

    I agree with Heidi. Pi is most certainly a boy though I haven’t considered why I assume that.

    And the following is a bit of a rabbit trail, but were we sitting across the table from one another, sipping our beverage of choice, this is where the conversation might go next.

    Speaking of Anne and interesting conversations – my youngest discovered that Anne Frank must have read Anne of Green Gables. She writes “My writing has raised me somewhat from ‘the depths of despair'”. Who says “depths of despair” except Anne Shirley? And she placed it in quotes! How have I always missed that when I’ve read the Diary.

    Now that would also be an interesting conversation…Anne and Anne.

  5. Added by “Lucy Maud Montgomery,” March 20, 2012:

    Anne Shirley: Can’t you even imagine you’re in the depths of despair?
    Marilla Cuthbert: No I cannot. To despair is to turn your back on God.

    I do believe Marilla knows Sister Aloysous.

  6. Added by Micki, March 21, 2012:

    Brilliant scholarship by Victoria! Did she find/deduce that herself– it makes me really curious…

    Great quote, Sandy. Great fashion tip, Heidi.

    Chloe thinks pi must be a female, for her evil, backstabbing (I might add ‘calculating’) ways. But I still kind of see pi as a male: way too fact-oriented and exact to take into account important factors (such as interior color scheme, decor style, and the sizes of all the relative shapes nearby) in sizing up area, diameter, circumference, etc.

    Just my opinion…

  7. Micki – I wasn’t able to watch this video on the old blog… Oh my! I can’t decide if I’m crying because of how precious she is, how much I miss you all, or how I can sympathize with the difficulty of your situation with Gus! A combination, I guess. I know it has been much work for you, but I’m so grateful to be able to catch up on your previous posts now that they are on this site. Thank you for putting the work in… this reheated Americano is even better than it was the first time around!

  8. Pingback: Reunions and Happy Endings | A fresh cuppa chaos

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s