First Writing Assignment:
“I Remember” Poems.
I fell in love with this concept during my sophomore year at Temple University. I was enrolled in this pretty terrible poetry class that consisted of listening to a grad student read his own work to the class and assigning texts that his various professors had written. To my surprise he assigned us a more contemporary text written by Joe Brainard in 2001.
Here is an excerpt –
I remember the only time I ever saw my mother cry. I was eating apricot pie.
I remember how much I used to stutter.
I remember the first time I saw television. Lucille Ball was taking ballet lessons.
I remember Aunt Cleora who lived in Hollywood. Every year for Christmas she sent my brother and me a joint present of one book.
I remember a very poor boy who had to wear his sister’s blouses to school.
I remember shower curtains with angel fish on them.
I remember very old people when I was very young. Their houses
I remember daydreams of being a singer all alone on a big stage with no scenery, just one spotlight on me, singing my heart out, and moving my audience to total tears of love and affection.
I remember waking up somewhere once and there was a horse staring me in the face.
I remember saying “thank you” in reply to “thank you” and then the other person doesn’t know what to say.
I remember how embarrassed I was when other children cried.
I remember one very hot summer day I put ice cubes in my aquarium and all the fish died.
I remcmber not understanding why people on the other side of the world didn’t fall off.
Step One: Take some time to write a 20 line “I Remember” poem. Explore how poetry can be made from your own speech patterns and personal experiences. Remain extremely detailed and showcase a variety of experiences.
Step Two: Narrow the poem down to 10 lines. Editing ones own work is the hardest job. Delete the adjectives. Delete the fluff. Get to the point.
Step Three: Be fearless with your work. Post here.