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An original sonnet for Poetry Friday

I wrote this poem a few years ago, when S was still in high school and M was in middle school. These days, S is a sophomore in college and M is a high school senior. My how time flies!

The poem is a Petrarchan sonnet, which adheres to the rhyme scheme ABBAABBACDCDCD. It first appeared in the excellent online journal, Chantarelle's Notebook.

Lessons I Wish I Could Share With My Teenage Daughter
by Kelly Ramsdell Fineman

Pay close attention to the words boys say:
It's not their tone or attitude that matter.
They frequently speak truth, whether they flatter,
Cajole, berate or seem like they're at play.
Don't be so quick to give yourself away –
You are more Alice than you are Mad Hatter.
Don't worry so much over hallway chatter:
Most drama lasts no longer than a day.
Sometimes you grow up faster than your friends,
While other times, you'll struggle to keep pace –
It's not a race. Remember no one spends
Eternity in high school. It's a place
To learn life's ropes, but everyone transcends
Their adolescence: suffering into grace.

Kiva - loans that change lives
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( 17 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 4th, 2013 06:27 pm (UTC)
Whew, those last couple of lines are so true -- lovely :)
Jan. 4th, 2013 10:47 pm (UTC)
Thank you, Robin!
Jan. 4th, 2013 07:39 pm (UTC)
Ah, I wish I had this to give my girls during their highschool years. Lovely.
Jan. 4th, 2013 10:48 pm (UTC)
Oh - what a lovely thing to say. Thank you, Terri!
Matt Forrest
Jan. 4th, 2013 11:00 pm (UTC)
Well said!
As the father of a couple of teen daughters, this rings very true! Well done - and I love the rhyme scheme.
Jan. 5th, 2013 01:13 am (UTC)
Re: Well said!
Thanks, Matt - and thanks again for hosting Poetry Friday!
(Deleted comment)
Jan. 5th, 2013 01:14 am (UTC)
It's kind of a shame that's true, but thank you, Melodye.
Jan. 5th, 2013 12:38 am (UTC)
I love this, Kelly!

I'm puzzled by this line:

"You are more Alice than you are Mad Hatter."

Aside from a handy rhyme, could you explain what you meant?

Edited at 2013-01-05 12:39 am (UTC)
Jan. 5th, 2013 01:34 am (UTC)
I could be a coy poet and ask you what it means to you, which is, after all, the most important part.

Alice is a quizzical, somewhat naive character; the Mad Hatter knows lots of stuff, but is a bit unstable. I meant that my child wasn't as polished or mature as she thought she was, nor was she as nuts as she sometimes felt.
Jan. 5th, 2013 03:19 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Jan. 5th, 2013 04:09 pm (UTC)
You are most welcome!
Jan. 5th, 2013 11:29 am (UTC)
Sent it to my teenage daughter, who likes it!
Jan. 5th, 2013 04:09 pm (UTC)
Aww . . . that just made my day, Tabatha!
Jan. 5th, 2013 07:58 pm (UTC)
This is lovely, Kelly! I love these lines:

Don't be so quick to give yourself away –
You are more Alice than you are Mad Hatter.

Jan. 6th, 2013 01:13 am (UTC)
Aww . . . thanks, Jessica!
Mary Lee Hahn
Jan. 6th, 2013 11:54 am (UTC)
So much truth in that poem! It even rings true for human relations BEYOND high school!
Jan. 6th, 2013 06:15 pm (UTC)
Thank you, Mary Lee!
( 17 comments — Leave a comment )

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