Monday, June 8, 2009

A Poet's Heart

With two of my classes, a 5th grade class at Golightly Educational Center and a class of 4th graders at Mark Twain, we read Jacqueline Woodson's novel-in-verse Locomotion.

Locomotion tells the story of 11-year-old Lonnie Collins Motion who lost his mother and father to a house fire when he was seven. This tragedy shapes and haunts who Lonnie is and becomes the source of his poetry when his teacher introduces him to the power of words. 

My students really identified with Lonnie's story (I plan to talk about this more in a later post) and Lonnie's poems take many poetic forms (from haiku to epistle) that make this book a very teachable, meaningful book for the poetry classroom.

Lonnie, as his teacher tells him near the end of the book, has the heart of a poet.

Here's a poem written by Ryan Estmond who, like Lonnie, has a poet's heart too:

A Poet's Heart

I have a
poet's heart, filled with

poetry, gifted
with love

inside my


I am gifted
with a

poet's heart
and blessed with love and

poetry inside
my heart.

Ryan Estmond

I hope to post some more poems inspired by Locomotion in the days and weeks to come. 

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