The Poetry Place

Dream on!

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

I wonder who came up with ‘dreams’?
Who are the people who decide?
Was there a committee meeting?
Someone taken to one side?

Were topics for our writing
Carefully short-listed?
Was there a vote? Was it consensual?
Were all options sifted?

Perhaps someone got up one day
Remembered there was something to be done
Rang a friend upon her mobile
Heard about her dreams - and thought: Hey – that might be fun!

Dream blog 3

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

So I have my island - which feels good, but slightly odd.
I want to say more about it - but not too much. I want the reader to wonder.

The lagoon is shallow
the shark is hungry 
and the tunnel is dark

There's a note of menace now. It's not all tropical paradise. And my eyes begin to range more widely:

On my island
there are a thousand trees
and twenty thousand coconuts
shared unequally

And then, at last, something happens.  But what?

On my island
you come to visit me
in several strange disguises
parrots  shark  coconuts

Could I make use of this day-dreaming to help students create some interesting writing?

Dream blog 2

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

How is that tropical islands come to mind?  Now then...what was on my island?

I try not to think too much. Just let images come.  And they do - so I very quickly have things on my island. They're a tunnel, a lagoon and a shark. Oh, and a flock of parrots.

It's all as you might expect - except for the tunnel. As I imagine myself there, I feel there's another person. Do I know who it is exactly?  I think the person needs to remain vague. I might have an idea but my reader will have to guess.

Dreams are a lot about guessing.  About what might be happening...


On my island
there’s only one road
and it goes from me to you

On my island
there’s a flock of parrots
who talk to me of you

On my island
there’s a tunnel
a lagoon
and a shark

I'm beginning to enjoy this.

Dream blog

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

Friday, 9 November 2007 15:06:16

I discovered that the topic for this year's National Poetry Day was Dreams.
At first I thought - great, lots of material there.  Then I thought a bit more and started to wonder if it was such a great topic.

Could I write a poem on that topic?  What kind of dream?  It could be like Martin Luther King's 'I have a dream' - a vision, an aspiration.  It could be a seemingly unconnected series of images.   It could be a nightmare. It's not an easy topic and I wonder how young writers might tackle it...

I realised that I didn't know many dream related poems. There's Coleridge's famous Kubla Khan poem of course, which he (allegedly) wrote on waking from a drug-induced dream. It certainly has many of the elements of a dream - i.e. it seems to make some kind of sense but on a closer look, you're less sure. I wonder who can come up with other examples?

I'm going to let my mind wander... see if I can come up with anything dreamlike...


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