Discovering your inner poet

Discovering your inner poet

Are you afraid of rhyme? Does meter make you nervous? Do you think writing poetry is out of your league?

It doesn’t have to be. And it can be fun to add to your scrapbook pages.

First of all, start with other people’s words. If you have a favorite poem or song lyric that really helps you tell a story, use it on a page! (Just don’t claim it as your own!)

Then, you can try modifying an existing poem or lyric, to suit your subject. You may already be doing this with songs you sing on a regular basis. (Just think of all the Frozen parodies out there now. I bet you even thought of creating your own version!)

Next, try some fun and traditional short forms, like limericks and haiku. A limerick is five lines, with the first two lines and the last one rhyming, and of longer length. The third and fourth lines rhyme with each other, and are shorter in length. A haiku is three lines long, with the lines five, then seven, then five syllables long. A haiku does not have to rhyme.

Still intimidated? How about trying an acrostic poem? Start with a word or phrase (names are fun too!) and write each letter on one line vertically. Then use each letter to start a word or phrase. If you have kids, they probably have brought home an acrostic poem about their name. If elementary aged kids can do this, so can you!

And then there’s my favorite: free verse. Free verse has no specific meter or rhyme, but it has an inherent rhythm, much like normal speech.

Start with a phrase that describes an event. Then add another. Don’t worry about full sentences or correct grammar, just concentrate on how the words flow. If you can read them aloud, and they work well together, you’ve got the beginnings of free verse.

This is a page I created where I tried to captured the relaxation and exploration of a day spent with my oldest at an art museum in the area. Free verse seemed to be the perfect way to capture the feeling of the day:

wandering ||

As you can see, free verse doesn’t have to be complicated. By breaking lines down so certain words or phrases stand alone, they gain greater emphasis.
Are you ready to try some poetry on your pages?

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