Poetry Workshop

I can barely remember the words to my favorite songs, so trying to recall verses to popular poems is not something I would even consider attempting. Yet, during a scrapbook workshop I attended over the summer, the instructor insisted that infusing layouts with pretty prose is a sure-fire way to make page designs especially memorable.

Fortunately, another lady in the crowd raised her hand after the teacher nonchalantly suggested we cull our collective memories for appropriate lines and stanzas to include on our layouts.

Seriously, how many people file poems in their brains these days and are able to extract them at will?

The instructor addressed the concern by recommending that we create our own scrapbook poems. Not exactly, the response I was looking for, but I understand the concept. By penning your own poem, you can add a powerful personal touch to your scrapbook pages.

Personally, I thought the teacher would simply instruct us to go online or look in a book for poems that we could use to embellish our layouts. Instead, she recommended that we brainstorm for a while and jot down memories and associations we had about a specific person or event that we were including in the page design. She encouraged us to be as specific and detailed as possible, then combine the thoughts to create a meaningful poem.

Another suggestion she provided included using the first letters of a person’s name to create a simple poem. This works especially well if you are creating a Mother’s or Father’s Day layout. Simply write M-O-T-H-E-R or F-A-T-H-E-R vertically on the page, and then use descriptive words that contain those letters to make what’s called an acrostic poem.

Finally, if you are really creative, you could write a haiku for each page of your memory album. While the idea may sound daunting, consider that haikus are very short (just three lines) and can be tailored to fit nicely on just about any layout.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.

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