I watched The Hero last weekend. It’s not often that a movie character reads a beautiful poem in a film, or that the words continue to resonate with me even a week later. The poem was Dirge without Music by Edna St. Vincent Millay. It was a perfect moment, a perfect poem, perfect sadness.
Writing novels is my go-to art form, and there’s usually not a lot of room for poetry in novels. Most of the time my poetry is random, personal, and left in a drawer. However, in my YA novel Straight A’s, Kim and Elliot exchange sonnets as a flirtation, like this one, called Lawn Cowboy:
Afar, I watch him mount his trusty steed,
A mechanical beast of name John Deere.
Easy on the eyes is this guy indeed,
Shirtless and muscled, no bees doth he fear.
I long to draw his attentions to me.
Instead, his mind focuses on one track:
The perfect straight line, across yard, to tree.
Naught else, not even sunscreen on his back.
One day those six-pack abs will be beer gut,
And hair will sprout in all manner of place.
Trusty green steed will become rust bucket.
Still my true love will shine upon his face.
If only he would ask me, I’d say yes,
To join the cowboy journey, heading west.
There are silly poems as well:
Betty Sue lost her red bootie
beside the red tattooed
man when she left the Jacuzzi.
You can bet your sweet patootie
she also forgot to
inform him about her cooties.
The climactic romantic moment comes with a brief four-liner:
I wrote this sappy love poem for you.
Please excuse the rhyme,
Infused with copious words to woo.
Won’t you please be mine?
But as any reader knows, the road to love is never straight or easy, especially for poets.
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