Trying to Make Reason out of Rhyme

As my son progresses through early adolesence, I worry about all of the things that I think most parents worry about—school work, grades, girls, whether he might grow up to be a Republican—things like that. Every once in a while, he hits me with one not even remotely on the parental radar. His newest passion definitely caught me completely off-guard: poetry.

I had a lot of literature and poetry forced upon me during all my years of schooling. Narrative, I understand. All the components of plot, setting, characters, and so forth. While I learned to appreciate poetry, I never “got it”. My son, on the other hand, not only seems to get it, but it appears to flowing out of his pores.

He has taken to writing his own poetry. I find most of it remarkable and amazing, portraying a depth and insight far beyond his twelve years. I asked him where it all comes from and he told me that it just comes into his head and writes it down. (Yes, it writes most of it long-hand, in a small notebook that we bought for him.) I’m familiar with the importance of listening to one’s muse, but this just blows me away! And then he recites it, embuing passages that I wouldn’t even have thought he could understand—much less compose—with such passion and depth that I can only sit silent and awestruck.

He wants to see his poetry published. I don’t see why not. So we’re working on that. After all, what’s a parent to do? 🙂

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