Snow + poetry = snowetry.
Except that I’m talking about them separately, so not really. I just had to share my silly new word combo.
We had a massive dump of snow last night. So much that the schools are closed and people are being encouraged to stay off of the highways and go home from the sky train. I've been doing some school work and am currently doing a month of cross-genre learning. My chosen cross-genre to learn about is poetry (from my usual genre, fiction).
Like almost every other lower-mainlander, I am annoyed that it just won’t stop snowing. Okay, okay, it hasn’t even been a week since the first real snowfall of the season. But, still. I don’t do winter any more. And, honestly, I didn’t think that I did poetry either. And yet here we are …
January 15, 2020
Snow + Poetry
The first project for my cross-genre in poetry was to think of a word. Then write down all of the things, words or phrases that came to mind when I thought of this word and turn all of those thoughts into a poem.
I chose the word home. We were encouraged to look around and choose an object to write about, or any word that came to mind. As I sat at my desk, everything around me was my home (I was at home, but bear with me). The kids toys were strewn about the floor, the dog was curled up nicely at my feet. I knew that Archer and Maverick were safe at school and day care respectively while I worked, and Brad was at the office out in Surrey. I was physically the only one (other than Eddie) left at home, but the feeling that my home brings me is so much more than the objects within the four walls of our townhouse.
For the assignment itself, we shared something we learned when writing our poem, or other thoughts we had, as well as a few lines if we chose to. I feel like I'm setting myself up to write about snow and poetry, but that isn't the case. Here is my poem, titled Home.
Hone the sense of magic I
get when I think of home.
When I am
Home. My safe space
where I can love and be loved. Live
Where I am living. And safe.
My heartbeat slows when I
welcome myself home. When I am home the
melody of my heart sings, expanding
from my chest, sharing the tune with
everyone else within its walls.
Where I feel warm and protected, encased
but not enclosed. The potential of my world
an infinity, the feeling constant. The feeling
I have become my true self within these walls, without them, too.
Feel what you will about my home.
It is not yours, though you are welcome here.
Your free will is not mine.
My home is.
Beloved. Mine to share.
Everyone should have one.
It makes me sad to think that not everyone does. Lucky.
Grateful. Treasure my home, as you treasure yours. They cannot be compared.
A flashback of the Little Mermaid comes to me.
From my childhood? Home?
That house was a different kind of home. Not like this one.
The mermaid with vibrant red hair and no voice
was more of a home to me then.
Under the sea. Under siege. Inactive.
The un-home where I grew up.
I am here now. Home.
The sounds come to me, softly, the keys
of a piano quiet at first. Loud at times,
jarring even. But welcoming
The piano tells
It like it is. Unique beauty.
My home doesn’t have a piano.
Or any instruments, really, unless you count my
thumping heart and how it loves.
Home will always be my home with them.
Expansive. True. Forever home. My forever heart.
What I had shared about my poem that surprised me was that when I was brainstorming words, not only did I write about a piano, but also the Little Mermaid! What the heck? First off, I do not own a piano, as mentioned in the poem, but while I love music, I am one of the least musically-inclined people you will ever meet. I have never played an instrument. I can’t read music. My singing skills are pretty superior as far as singing in the shower when no one else is home is concerned. But that’s about it. We listen to music a lot, but the piano? Not something that comes to mind typically when I think about home.
After I completed my assignment, I re-read what I had shared with my classmates (some of which are new people to me this month, a couple of whom are in my group for fiction and are known to me). It was then that I realized what, or more accurately, who, it was that I was writing about. Rachael. She was a beautiful piano player and the only one I really know that practiced that instrument, even into her adulthood.
And, so, this piece has come full-circle for me. Snow and poetry, together, are peaceful for me, though one is unwelcome, the other just new. I feel at peace. It’s a pretty personal piece, and I know poetry is not everyone's thing, but hey. The jumping-off point of my writing career was my memoir, and it doesn’t get much more personal than that.
I hope you enjoyed my poem and can see something in it that is special to you. About me, or not. Just special. Embrace something new, like the snow. And poetry.
Our back yard, earlier this week.