Speak poetry with meaning!

I was watching a show I DVRed earlier this week, and a character fallowed a son of a friend of her mother to a poetry reading. That is how you start a story, with a question of: What kind of relationship are they going to have?

She went and read a poem about flowers, but it didn’t have enough punch to it. I was thinking if any of my poems had punch. Punching words is how you read the poem to portray the meaning you want to give the audience. I remembered a poem I wrote for my first book that I thought would be a good poem for the character in the show to have read at the poetry reading.

From my first book:

They all applauded as Gabriela climbed up on to the stage with difficulty, climbing up on a chair, then onto the stage. Josh gave her a hand up, but after she collected herself, and took the mike, “Hi, I’m Gabriela.” With a pause, she continued, “I’m going to read a poem I put together in the style of Jamaica Kincaid, a late twentieth century writer.”

Gabriela, do the dishes, wash your hands, study hard, practice the flute, play nice. Gaby, play with me, play dolls, play dress up, throw to me throw to me.

Gabriel, call me, let’s go out, do our hair, look pretty. Gabriela, get good grades, set the table, don’t eat too much, do aerobics, stay in shape.

Gaby, look at me, watch me, play with me.

Gabriel, don’t do that, do it like this do it like that.

I’m going to do what I want, when I want, and how I want to do it.

Everyone was and where in a gasp.

With a big smile, Gabriela said, “Thank you for listening, and for your time.”

Someone in the back started to applaud, and everyone joined in as Gabriela left the stage with a hand from Josh.

Josh took the mike and said, “Let’s hear it for Gabriela. That sure got your heart beating. Okay, let’s get lighthearted for some jokes from Willem.”

Stacey followed Gabriela to the back of the room and said, “That was great. You had them on the floor with that ending.”

With a reassuring smile, Stacey patted her shoulder.

“Do you really think they liked it?” Gabriela said with a confused look on her.

“Yeah, I’m sure they all can relate to being pulled into many directions and just wanting to go their own way.”

Poetry Out Loud is a good reference about Poetry. About midway down the page is an explanation of punching words.