THE TURTLE AND THE BEE
© Ra Khalil | Dreamstime.com
© Ra Khalil | Dreamstime.com
Over where I live, spring time sets us free from the cold and going for walks is something we truly enjoy after being couped up all winter. Today, I want you to think about things you have found in the past. And if you have the time and the weather is nice by you, make a walk part of this prompt and see what you find on your walk. Record what you discover.
Creative Writing Prompts For All: Make a list of things you remember finding, perhaps something you found or discovered on your walk today.
Free-Write Prompt: Write about one of the things from you list.
Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story where your character finds something that helps him or her solve a problem. What does your character find? How is it found? How does it help with the problem?
Poetry Writing Prompt: Write a poem about something you have found. Below is a poem from Ted Kooser's American Life in Poetry Column that features a poem about finding a turtle by Jeff Worley. Notice how the first stanza is about explaining why the turtle was there to be found, and the second stanza starts "I imagine. . . " Try writing a poem in that style or make a style of your own.
I hope you enjoy the poem below and your writing today.
BY TED KOOSER, U.S. POET LAUREATE
A poem is an experience like any other, and we can learn as much or more about, say, an apple from a poem about an apple as from the apple itself. Since I was a boy, I’ve been picking up things, but I’ve never found a turtle shell until I found one in this poem by Jeff Worley, who lives in Kentucky.
On Finding a Turtle Shell in Daniel Boone National Forest
This one got tired
of lugging his fortress
wherever he went,
was done with duck and cover
at every explosion
through rustling leaves
of fox and dog and skunk.
Said au revoir to the ritual
of pulling himself together. . .
I imagine him waiting
for the cover of darkness
to let down his hinged drawbridge.
He wanted, after so many
protracted years of caution,
to dance naked and nimble
as a flame under the moon—
even if dancing just once
was all that the teeth
of the forest would allow.
American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation (www.poetryfoundation.org), publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Poem copyright ©2008 by Jeff Worley, whose most recent book of poems is Best to Keep Moving, Larkspur Press, 2009, which includes this poem. Reprinted from Poetry East, Nos. 62 & 63, Fall, 2008, by permission of Jeff Worley and the publisher.
Introduction copyright © 2009 by The Poetry Foundation. The introduction's author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006. We do not accept unsolicited manuscripts.