[Poetry Friday] On Moving and Being the New Girl

poetry friday

Fats here.

Last week, I shared an excerpt from Jacqueline Woodson’s Brown Girl Dreaming. I bought a copy online that day and I received it in the mail two days ago! Yay, I’m so excited to read it!

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Today, I’m sharing excerpts from another book, this time it’s from a middle grade verse novel called Catching a Storyfish by Janice N. Harrington. It was quite an interesting book and I finished it in one sitting. The story focuses on a young girl named Katharen Walker who moved with her family from Alabama to Illinois. Children who had a similar experience could relate well to what Keet-Keet said in the two excerpts below.

Poetry Friday round-up is happening at Karen Edmisten‘s blog!


A Box Big Enough

Please, give me a box
to pack my cousins in,
a box to hold the wide front porch
where I liked to sit and swing,
a box for the fishpond and another for the fish,
a box for my old room
and my old floor that c-r-e-a-k-e-d,
a box for the egg-gold evenings
when all my friends played tag.
And we ran, ran, ran, pinwheeling
brown legs, swinging
brown arms, laughing and calling,
running this way and that, trying not to be,
not to be, not to be—it!
We played long enough for the stars to join in,
for the moon to shine as bright as the eyes
of my cousin Carl who almost, almost, almost
tagged me—but I escaped!

Give me a box,
a cardboard box, a wide box, a deep box
for the long, low screech of the swing on the porch,
for Mama and Daddy softly talking,
with Noah on Mama’s lap
and me in the middle.

Give me a box,
a big box,
the right box, a heart box,
to carry everything I love
and all my friends
from far, far away.


New Girl Blues

I got the New-Girl blues.
I got those back-to-school and don’t-want-to,
do-I-have-to-Mama? do-I-have-to? blues.

Blues in my thinking, blues
in my walk. Blues and lonely lonely
because of my New-Girl talk.

I got the New-Girl,
don’t-want-to-go,
don’t-make-me-go blues.


I enjoyed reading Catching a Storyfish. Teachers can use this book for a poetry class. There is a “Poetry Glossary” in the end. The author highlighted the different forms of poetry that were used in the book, including the titles of the chapters that represented these forms. Check it out if you haven’t already!

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