Welcome to Booktomato! Today we are reading about an amazing poet and creating some poetry of our own. Pablo Neruda was a Nobel Prize winning poet who lived in Chile from 1904 until his death in 1973. Neruda was nicknamed the poet of the people because he used his writing to bring social change and social justice to the people in his country. Neruda also loved to write about the beauty of simple things like flowers, rocks, birds, and the smiles of his friends. This book by Monica Brown with pictures by Julie Paschkis is a colorful, inspiring introduction to the poet and his work. Here are some writing prompts to try after reading the book.
how to write like Pablo Neruda:
- Write a poem about the prettiest flower you have ever seen.
- Find three rocks in the backyard. Write a poem about what they look like and where you think they came from.
- Think of a time that something seemed unfair. Write a poem about a way to solve the problem.
- Go to the grocery store and find your favorite fruit or vegetable. Study it and write what it makes you feel.
Another great poetry activity is to make a collage poem. This is a great one for the times when you want to write a poem but feel intimidated by the blank page in front of you. The word "poem" seems so formal and daunting sometimes, especially if you have a child like mine who is a perfectionist. He can't find the perfect word, so he sits there paralyzed. Try this activity.
Cut out phrases, sentences, and individual words from an old magazine or newspaper. Get a good mix of interesting phrases, full sentences, verbs, nouns, and such. Make it varied.
Once you have your clippings, the poet can arrange the clippings in different ways on a sheet of plain paper. The challenge is to arrange them in a way that makes a satisfying poem. Once the poet is happy with his poem, you can paste it on the paper or put the clippings back in the pile and start again!