Poetry Friday – Three Poems from March Open Write

Today is Poetry Friday and Rose Cappelli is hosting with lots of bird watching fun and poems.

Today for Poetry Friday, I’m sharing the prompts (click on the dated links) and some of the poems I wrote this week for Ethical ELA’s Open Write.

Saturday, March 16, 2024 with James Coats

I was a quiet anarchist in high school, subverting the authority of those I deemed unworthy. Mr. B. was one of those who received my disdain. He promised a literary magazine of our creative writing that semester. As the semester wrapped up, we realized it was not going to happen. The haikus and sonnets and reviews and short stories were stuffed in a file on his desk. I asked for the writings he had collected. Then I typed them on ditto masters, copied, collated, and stapled them in my business class. I passed them out to my creative writing peers. That may be the only good thing I did to/for Mr. B. Mostly I was indifferent and disrespectful to a man I judged as lazy and unworthy to be in his position. That semester something good he did for me was refer me to my guidance counselor, a visit to see if something was up, if something was bothering me. There was. I wasn’t honest with the counselor, but I began to face my fears as a result of that visit.

Since my experience with Mr. B., I am always extra careful with students who are disrespectful to me. I know it’s not a reflection of who they are, but maybe it’s something they are going through. (And maybe, I have to realize, it may be something about me too.)

Sunday, March 17, 2024 with Katrina Morrison

Mondegreen is a series of words that result from the mishearing or misinterpretation of a statement or song lyric. Here’s a great example poem on Poetry Foundation by Randall Mann. How many of these song lyrics do you recognize?


Hold me closer Tony Danza
We built this city on sausage rolls
There’s a wino down the road
Give me the Beach Boys and free my soul
The ants are my friends, they’re blowing in the wind
Wrapped up like a douche another lover in the night
I can see clearly now, Lorraine is gone
Saving his life from this warm sausage tea
This is the dawning of the Age of Asparagus
I remove umbilicals
Elton John “Tiny Dancer”
Starship “We Built this City”
Led Zeppelin “Stairway to Heaven”
Uncle Kracker “Drift Away”
Bob Dylan “Blowin’ in the Wind”
Bruce Springsteen “Blinded By the Light”
Johnny Nash “I Can See Clearly Now”
Queen “Bohemian Rhapsody”
Fifth Dimension “Aquarius / Let the Sunshine In”
Hot Chocolate “I Believe in Miracles”

Monday, March 18, 2024 with Wendy EverardMy Double Dactyl
Tuesday, March 19, 2024 with Rex MustonMy Junk Drawer Affirmation

Wednesday, March 20, 2024 with Shelley Martin-Young

Bad things are going to happen.
You won’t get Wordle in six guesses.
You’ll accidentally put light mayo
On the Reuben sandwiches; they
won’t get crisp on the griddle.
You’ll have to wait three months to take
delivery of your custom-built closet.

And then when you go to write
a poem about the bad things,
you will remember your life right
now is nothing if not relaxing.

So, you’ll spend time thinking
about those who aren’t able to
child labor
lack of housing
human trafficking
climate disruption

And you wonder when you will
do more than think about them.


15 thoughts on “Poetry Friday – Three Poems from March Open Write

  1. Denise, what a post! You got me grinning with your Mondegreen! Your observations and growing/changing awareness of Mr. B and yourself is so relatable…thank you. Thank you, too, for the reminder to move beyond thinking. xo

  2. A really interesting story about Mr. B and what you learned from having him as a teacher. One famous Mondegreen that comes out every year on May 1st is the one of Justin Timberlake singing, “It’s gonna be May.” (He’s actually singing “It’s gonna be me.”)

  3. Denise, three wow poems! #1 personal issues and emotions #2pure fun to read #3 moving beyond personal bad things to a global look at those in need. All are different, reflection, and gives the reader different perspectives on life.

  4. Thank you for this thoughtful post and all the poetry goodness. I especially love relax – such an important reminder.

  5. I’ve had a couple of recent challenges & then, as your poem shows, I ‘spend time thinking’ of all those in the world, in need. It’s a poem I wish everyone could read & remember, Denise. I love your clever “Mondegreen”, & the memories of Mr. B, showing how NOT to be. All contemplative, and done is unexpected ways! Thanks!

  6. I cheered for HS you fighting back against an apathetic teacher!

    Writing the double dactyl was fun (not one I cared to share with the whole community). The folks who lead the open writes are always so creative!

  7. Denise– this is such a rich post. Thank you for sharing the depth of your range of thoughts, musings, and words today.

  8. Oh, “And you wonder when you will
    do more than think about them.”

    This one got me in the gut, Denise. <3

  9. Denise! all interesting, all skilled, all little gifts to us. Thanks for sharing. Now,
    “excuse me
    while I kiss this guy.”

    BTW I love the anti spam words that pop up here. I’ve started more than one poem using them. Today’s is “flash jay.”

  10. Mondegreen is hilarious. Love that compilation. You got some great poems from your prompts. And that dang Wordle! I hate the “Phew” when it takes six tries to get the word. “Shut up,” I think. Anyway. There’s a Spanish version in the Madrid paper El País; it’s called Palabra Secreta. It’s fun.

  11. Wow, I love all three sections of this post and all three, very different poems. 1. Drat Mr. B! Glad that you stepped up and took charge! 2. My oldest sister used to sing “Chew the Hot Dog” instead of “Do the Hustle!” 3. I will do something!

    Aside: a few weeks ago, I started getting blocked by your website. : ( I was able to get in by searching for your blog for a while or using a different browser, but now those seem to be blocked as well. I have been exchanging emails with edublogs this weekend trying to get unblocked, but so far no success. Now, I can only get in on my phone, which usually results in many typos. My apologies for not commenting recently, just wanted to explain why and let you know that I am trying to figure it out. : )

    1. Oh, thank you, Tracey, for your persistence! I don’t have any comments in my spam folder. Sorry for the hassle, but thanks for trying. I have been singing, “Chew the hot dog,” this afternoon.

  12. LOL. Your Mondegreen cracks me up. ‘We built this city on sausage rolls,’ is the best. I hope you can see how your writing is growing. Isn’t that fabulous?!

  13. It seems like your time with Mr. B taught you a lot in spite of what he lacked as a teacher. Such an interesting story! Your last poem skillfully puts what are our more minor struggles and complaints into perspective. Thanks, Tracey!

  14. Three wonderful poems – thanks for sharing them! Ruth, thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

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