Poetry has always had a high priority in my reading life. In my teens I discovered major poets and also some that were rather obscure. I read with a thirst. Words came alive to me. Some poems, like Burroughs’ Waiting have stayed with me since my first discovery in my teens. I often reread it and find more to it. More depth. And an even stronger connection to it.
I have passed this poem on to my daughter too– hoping that it will resonate with her.
Ah. My 13-year-old daughter. An exquisite creature who is off beat, and takes life on her own terms.
If poetry was humanized, SHE would be free verse, spoken word. Vital. Vibrant. Off in all kinds of directions.
But THIS is a blog about Jack, isn’t it?
Jack who I lay next to each night as he falls asleep …….
Once Jack falls asleep, I text my husband to let him know all is well in the back bedroom and I will be out shortly.
About a week ago, in a playful mood, I decided to write a haiku rather than texting:
“Boy asleep, out in a mo”
5-7-5 syllable structure
Softly sounds of sleep
Permeate the dark room
Jack at peace for now
I was quite pleased with my cleverness.
And so the next night I repeated the idea:
The boy snores soundly
Exhausted from being Jack
The good kind of tired
And so, being a dork, I decided to finish out the week the same way
(I am NOTHING if not a creature of habit!)
The boy sound asleep
Dreams of things that we cannot
Sleep sweet dreams, Jackson
He speaks of his day
The trees,the spinnings, daddy
His mind is a book.
The boy falls asleep
Without a sound or a fuss
Dreams of Darrah’s room.
Daddy’s arms are strong
The best place to fall asleep
Jackson loves Daddy
Then last night, it hit me…….
Jackson IS haiku.
Jackson is haiku
He is a steady rhythm
Compactness of words
Jackson IS haiku
he’s juxtaposed elements
spare and raw beauty
Jackson IS haiku
he’s deceptively simple
yet years to master
Ask any parent of a special needs child:
There is poetry in their very existence.
Sometimes it’s Ginsberg’s HOWL.
Sometimes it’s the very structured iambic pentameter of Shakespeare.
Sometimes it’s the be-bop cool of Langston Hughes.
And sometimes it’s all their own- defying any box or parameters.
I invite you to keep your eyes, ears and heart open for the random poetry readings that may occur in your life.