It is a little silly but I am wildly excited and proud that Moomin is a finalist in his age group in the city-wide poetry contest!
For the past few years I have helped judge that contest, because it’s incredibly fun and it seems like my civic duty as a poet to be poety for my community. Hundreds of kids enter it from all the schools in the district. The librarians look them over and eliminate all but 15 or 20 for each age group. Then a small panel of judges spends a few hours arguing about who should win!
This year, I had bronchitis on Poetry Judging Day and so did not make it down to the library. And… Moomin is one of the winners!
I have a whole somewhat silly fantasy of how, if I had been there, I would have seen his poem in the batch for 3rd-5th grade, and my gentle smile of false humility as I cleared my throat to recuse myself as a judge for that group. And how I would have been bursting with pride, poorly concealed.
Allow me to poorly conceal it even more here on my blog. It is the first poem he ever wrote, and I am very proud!
My Canary’s Talking
My canary’s talking,
it’s copying me,
I think it’s done it
since March 23.
It clomps like my shoes
and has my own voice.
It chatters when I’m cold,
and sighs on choice.
I don’t understand it
my mind is all blank
I’m going crazy,
it sometimes goes clank!
It crunches when I bite a carrot.
Hey, it’s squawking now!
Oh now I understand,
it’s actually a parrot!
The meter is not too bad, though not perfect, and the rhyme is good! It’s funny, too. He clearly gets the idea of the genre of humorous poetry with a twist at the end. His penchant for knock-knock jokes and bad puns is developing in yet another direction. As a keen-minded, harsh judge even of third graders, I do note the slight awkwardness of the phrase “on choice”, chosen in a desperate attempt to make the rhyme come out while not quite making sense. However, that is … of course… the note of authenticity that proves to us the poem was not copied out of a book and so as far as I’m concerned it is the flaw in the diamond that makes the diamond priceless.
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