Wednesday, 29 April 2009

The perils of literary-loike-ness

Merry Girl: “Mum, I have to write a new acrostic poem for the show.”

Self: (distractedly) “Why, Merry-Girl?”

Merry Girl: “Well, you know the one I did on the kangaroo?”

Self: “Yes, the one who ate oranges. I liked that one.”

Merry Girl: “The teacher says that it’s not true and that I have to write true poems.”

Self to Merry Girl: (calm parenty-type voice) “Well I’m sorry about that because it was a good poem. And poems are descriptions of things whether true or not. But if the teacher says that you need to do a new one, you’d better do one.”

Self to self: “What kind of stupid-arse comment is that? Haven’t they ever heard of Spike Milligan, Dr. Seuss, Edward Lear…? Who said poems had to be true? If they had to be true, there wouldn’t be any poetry in the world and no good literature either. I bet the teacher doesn’t read poetry or novels.”

Self to other self: “I’ve got to stop talking to myself like this. People are going to look at me even more oddly. And my children will roll their eyes even more.”

Several days later.

Merry Girl: “Mum, the book I’m reading is a bit scary.”

Self: “If it’s too scary, don’t read it then.”

Merry Girl: “But it’s a narrative and narratives have a problem that needs to be solved. The scary bad guy is the problem that needs to be solved. So I just tell myself that it’s all part of the narrative and I’m not scared.”

Self to self: (smugly) “ Clearly my daughter. Did I know what a narrative was when I was seven? I think not. Maybe this teacher is teaching her something. I might not have to send her custard with mustard after all.”

No comments: