When did I first hear the first word of poetry?
I can remember sitting in a lap that was bigger then, and there was a man who wrote all the best books about one fish and two fish, Mr. Brown who moos, tweetle-beetle battles, and oh, the places you’ll go.
I can remember third grade, when we had our poetry unit. I wrote limericks, haikus, open form, other things. I can remember sharing my poetry book with my family, and my mom cried when she read what I wrote about my friend who had moved away.
My grandfather is a poet. I’ve read his poems on warm sunny days in a room painted with the brightness of a smile. There was something about that day last summer—and I don’t know if it was the softness of the cotton comforter gluing me to the eons or the fact that I’ve touched the hand that wrote the words, and it’s different.
We study poetry in my Lit class now. There are items like SOAPSTTone and lit devices, meter, sound devices, structure, more. Little pieces that are confusing and intricate but as juicy as worms dug out in the backyard. Maybe not beautiful but still good.
And when did I hear poetry?
It’s one thing to watch Dead Poets Society or Four Weddings and a Funeral and smile and cry because it’s poetry and God it’s good.
But it’s another—entirely another—to stand up to the sun and shout, “THIS IS POETRY!” so that it knows to shine extra-brightly. And when did I first start shouting?
Perhaps I’ll never know.