Friday, March 31, 2017

Creating a Poem about Age - Slice of Life 3/31/17

During this month I wrote about my plan to write a poem about age with my students. We began this week. I used the following mentor texts to get the kids thinking along these lines:

Then the kids went off to craft their own poems, and so did I. They will be turning their poems in today. I've read several. Many are extremely personal and private. I'm impressed that in this first poetry assignment of the unit, they've already gone far beyond what I could have dreamed possible.

Here's where my poem is at now. It isn't where I want it to be, but it is on the way there:

This is 43 

This is 43
the sandwich generation
raising children
nervously watching our own parents grow old.

At 43 you begin to sense time more deeply
you long to slow down,
to cherish moments with your kids,
your parents,
your spouse.

At 43 you wish for a magic wand
just to keep things the way they are,
but you know you can’t.
And at 43, you begin to accept that.

When you reach 43,
you begin to find a peace you didn’t know you had.
You can look at things objectively,
evaluate them for their worth,
and move on.

43 is about giving up
on friends who aren’t true,
unrealistic expectations,
and worrying about others’ perceptions of you.

43 is coming to accept your own limitations
and knowing that only you are responsible for you.
It’s the time to stop blaming
and become who you are meant to be.

43 is finding out that your children
are actually interesting people.
You watch them navigate the world,
Wish you could make life easier for them,
pray that you’ve taught them what they need to know
and push them out of the nest to watch them go.

And after twenty years of marriage,
at 43, your idea of a great Friday night
includes hanging out at home,
ordering pizza with a sweet red sauce,
and watching Fixer Upper on TV.
Hearing your boys in the basement,
dogs laying by our side
equals perfection.

At 43 you catch your reflection in the mirror,
and wonder how your mom got there.
Inside you feel like a kid,
but are also grateful you are not.
You’ve learned too much,
become too comfortable in your own skin,
to ever want to go back.

43 is knowing you are on
the downhill part of your run.
Life is moving by at a faster pace,
but the wisdom gained through
age lets me soak it up,
appreciate the small moments
and embrace myself for who I am.

Slice of Life is a challenge hosted by Two Writing Teachers