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  • thewonderingway

Why write ?

Updated: Mar 17, 2023


At primary school poetry was fun and engendered a love of language. I recall reading with my mother “now we are six” and loving the rhythm and repetition in the King’s Breakfast as well as many of those included below

I just loved words, the shape and the sounds and as a child particularly onomatopoeia.

Have you been able to engage children with language ?

’Please do not feed the animals...’ - Children's Poetry Archive tickled me – just loved the juxtaposition of images he created when I searched “just for fun”.

Deeper Meaning

At secondary school, after my brusque English teacher dismissed my work with “Kids can’t write poetry” he achieved what he expected from me … a determination not to be put down! However, the poetry in his mind was the deep and meaningful expression of feelings and ideas, which he could not imagine could be found in the young. How little we understood about child development and capacity in those days !

Now after a lifetime of experience that I could express in poetry its not my metier. I limit myself to birthday odes for friends. I am often astounded how the constraint of a rhyme steers you to a word so apt, creating a meaning, you would never have found in words in common use.

Do you express yourself in poetry ?


However, it is prose I find most useful if I want to truly understand my feelings. During my teenage years it was so useful to be able to vent to my diary, to release the angst pent up from the day.

Do teenagers still write diaries ?

They are often mocked by “all knowing adults” and I too have shared the amusement over the ten series of the Radio4 programme BBC Sounds - My Teenage Diary - Available Episodes

However, I found it was therapeutic. I made daily diarising a habit. Then I was able to reread at a later date with wonder at how fed up I had been, when now everything was fine. And of course, as most teenagers discover, there is a pattern, a monthly pattern. Analysing my diaries gave me insight and power, an ability to manage my responses to setbacks, a resilience.

I wonder could this help today for children struggling with unhappiness rather than recourse to the internet and other “sufferers”?

It’s certainly been used for catharsis after traumatic events as was explored in

Letters Home

Whilst at university in the 80s my friends separated to work abroad and so communicated by letter. Rereading these today we find them a little depressing, as we did pour our hearts out, as we felt lonely. Yet we all returned feeling we had had a good time and more confident in our ability to cope with times that were not fun.

The recent programme by Tim Peak took this feeling of homesickness further –

Does it affect you ?

Travel Journals

Many people travel nowadays “to find themselves” but I have often wondered looking at the happy faces in #instaready images – does that still work if you don’t stop and reflect but spend your evening scrolling or looking for likes?

To address this I have created my Traveller’s Companions with space for you to write, to note what you thought remarkable and then later explore and reflect on how it has affected you.

Visit my website to learn more as my range continues to expand.

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