Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Responding to Poetry: Tumbleweed - A Poetry Break

Moving away to a new home, city, or even a new state can be a very difficult time for children. They are leaving their home, neighborhood, school, and friends and going some place new and unfamiliar. This poem comes a book of poems, Moving Day, that revolves around a boy who is leaving his home in Massachusetts to live in Ohio and who is going through all the emotional stages of one who is leaving the home that he knows. Share this poem along with the entire book or some of it singular poems like “Unmovable,” “Leaves,” “Lasts,” and the ending poem “Leaves.”

By Ralph Fletcher

You see them in old Westerns,
blowing across a dusty road.

Their roots aren’t planted in soil
but curled up so they can roll along
wherever the wind might take them.

If we move away from here,
I won’t be from Marshfield
or from Massachusetts, either.

I won’t be from anywhere–
…………just a tumbleweed
……………….blowing across a dusty road.

Invite the children to share any of their experiences of moving from one home to another or of someone they know who moved away. Ask them how they would feel if they were leaving to live in a new place and how they would learn to like their new home. Connecting with the tumbleweed in the poem, ask if there is another way to describe the feeling of not belonging to any particular place.

This poem is from:

Fletcher, Ralph. 2006. Moving Day. Illus. by Jennifer Emery. Honesdale, Penn: Wordsong. ISBN: 9781590783399.

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