Wednesday, June 3, 2020

INSIDE OUT: POEMS ON WRITING AND READING



Do you know how to smell a poem? 

In Inside Out: Poems on Writing and Reading Poems, Marjorie Maddox offers the reader a delightful suggestion. “Keep following the trail of scent to sniff out the meaning.”

Maddox also tells us how to befriend a poem. “Invite him home for dinner but don’t insist on rhyme.”

And she explains that “Much of what he has to say lies between the lines.”

This clever collection of poems and writing exercises begins with verses on how to see, hear, taste, smell, and touch a poem and then delves into poetic devices and forms. Teachers should find ample inspiration to motivate student writing.

For example, these glorious lines from “Fishing for Sestinas.”
“the poems themselves sew together our world,
the way fish in waves thread themselves in and out,
the way dreams swim their own stories”

And this couplet invites writers to try a villanelle.
“To write a villanelle, think like a bird
that sings a song that you’ve already heard.”

 The 27 poems in this collection are followed by 9 creative writing exercises including fun suggestions for writing persona poems, clerihews, and sonnets.

A 3 page glossary provides succinct definitions for every term referenced in the poems. Inside Out by Marjorie Maddox is an excellent resource to jump start creativity in the classroom or at home. 

Jacqueline Jules

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