College Poetry,  General Thoughts,  Poetry

Moving On

Rhythmic Poetry-For Poetry Workshop Class.

“Moving On” 1-29-02

Cobblestones near the wood-stove
Were often houses and roads
For the sisters’ matchbox cars
During stormy summer nights
When their game was make-believe.

They made elevators of
Sheets for stuffed dogs and dolls on
Stairs where little sister’s head
Got caught in the banisters.
Momma’s butter stopped her tears.

The circle driveway became
Never ending when their bikes
Were not locked in the garage.
Traffic accidents ended
Then with only bleeding knees.

Three sisters help pack boxes.
They can’t pack the cobblestones,
Or the staircase where they played.
But nothing is forgotten,
Because all homes have old dreams.


I was always grateful to receive constructive criticism on my work. This person was blunt but influential, as apparent by the fact that I have saved this note for more than fourteen years. He’s the same person who commented on Too Much. I made some of his suggested changes and took his other thoughts into consideration to get the final poem. Ultimately, I did not take his suggestion to change the title because I felt very strongly about leaving it the same. I didn’t take this person’s suggestions word-for-word on fixing the last verse because then it wouldn’t be my work.

The original last line was:

But nothing is left behind
Because all homes have old dreams.

I did, however, change my words to convey the message I meant to while maintaining my seven beats per line rhythm. Seven beats had the significance of representing the seven-year difference in ages of the oldest and youngest sisters. The poem was better after the changes. Sometimes what I write gets in the way of what I’m trying to say.


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