I was thinking about how to celebrate and I thought back to high school. Did you ever have to memorize a poem and recite it to an English class?
I remember sitting there, half a dozen options already in my head. I was thrilled at the prospect of picking one. Around me, my classmates were negotiating with the teacher. “Can it be a haiku?” “How long does it have to be?” I don’t even remember how many lines were required because all of my options were plenty long.
In the end, I memorized two; “How Do I Love Thee?” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning and “Mending Wall” by Robert Frost. It was high school, so the love poem lost the battle and I performed “Mending Wall” even though it was longer.
I don’t really remember how well it went. I tended to black out during public speaking in those days. I got a good grade at any rate and better yet, something to love for the rest of my life. It’s still one of my favorite poems.
My daughter recently shared a photograph she took and edited along with a poem inspired by that photo. It was for a gallery and art auction for a school program she’s in. I was so proud of her as she stood there and spoke to us and to other parents, friends, and family about her work. I’m not sure she’s as big a fan of poetry as I was, but maybe I’ll see if she wants to read some poetry with me this month. I’ll see how many of my old favorites she has read.
I’m going to challenge myself to write a poem sometime this month. It’s been quite a while. Also, I’ll try to revisit some of my old favorites and see if they still hold the spark they once did for me. I’ll share some of them on Facebook as we move through April.
If you’re a poetry lover, I challenge you to revisit your favorites this month. And if you’d like, share the titles here in the comments. I’d love to look them up.