Friday, February 18, 2011

Let It Snow...Let It Snow...Let It Snow: Repetition in Poetry

When I’m writing, I do my best not to repeat myself. I try to vary the way I begin my sentences. I try not to use the same words over and over again. There are times, however, when repetition can be used to great effect in poetry.
I wrote the following poem It’s Raining last April. I was inspired to write it after experiencing a long period of rainy days. It just kept on raining and raining and raining…and sometimes pouring. It seemed as if the rain would never stop. In my poem, I tried to capture the voice of a child who feels his/her world has been inundated with rain.


It’s Raining

It’s raining…
Raining all around.
It’s raining puddles
On the ground.
It’s raining
On my booted feet.
It’s raining
Rivers in the street.
It’s raining cats.
It’s raining dogs.
It’s raining ponds
For polliwogs.
It’s raining
Drop by drop by drop…
A billion trillion—
It won’t stop!
It’s raining buckets
From the sky.
Don’t think the earth
Will EVER dry.

In the past month, we’ve had a LOT of storms where I live. Most of the storms deposited a significant amount of snow. It seemed we’d no sooner shovel ourselves out from one storm when we’d hear that another one was headed our way. The snow is really deep around here! It’s as high as an elephant’s eye—maybe even a giraffe’s eye!

Because of all the storms, I’ve been housebound more than usual this winter. I started taking pictures from inside and outside of my house. The pictures and the “serial snowstorms” inspired me to write poetry.

Here are two snow poems in which I used a lot of repetition. As in my rain poem, I tried to capture a child’s voice in these snow poems.

It Snowed and Snowed
It snowed all day.
It snowed all night.
It snowed and snowed.
Two feet of white
covered everything in sight.
Our yard,
our deck,
our walk,
the road
don’t look the same
because it snowed…
and snowed
and snowed
and snowed
and snowed.
I dress up in my winter wear
And step out in the frosty air.
I look around and what I see
is a marshmallow world
waiting for me!

It’s Snowing Again!

It’s snowing again.
It’s blowing again.
It’s snowing and blowing.
The traffic is slowing.
I watch the drifts growing and growing and growing.
It just keeps on snowing
and snowing and snowing.
I don’t think it’s
to end.

At Wild Rose Reader, I have an original fairy tale poem written in the form of a classified ad titled Apartment for Rent.

You'll find the Poetry Friday Roundup at Great Kid Books.


Anonymous said...

These poems are oh so nice.

Amanda Hoving said...

Wow...that's a lot of snow!

I enjoyed your poems -- especially liked how the line "growing and growing and growing" grew.

Thanks for sharing!

laurasalas said...

Looks a lot like Minnesota! Love these poems, Elaine, and I do love repetition in poetry. Your first poem is my favorite, and I esp love the raining ponds for polliwogs line!