Friday, May 17, 2013

Childhood Dreams and Growing Up - in photos, prose & poetry

If one picture is worth a thousand words,
can one picture inspire a thousand words?
     Well, this photo by Hank Kellner inspired at least forty words in poem form that tumbled out like the rippling tresses cascading down this little girl’s back.

     Little Girls

Temper tantrums
Goofy grins
Ballet shoes and hairbows
and Barbie dolls

That’s what girls are made of

Riding lessons
Dancing classes
Swimming lessons, too
Cheerleading sessions
Girl Scouts                              
That’s what some girls do

Then they discover boys
The end

                                ~ Elizabeth Guy
“If growing up means it would be beneath my dignity to climb a tree, I'll never grow up, never grow up, never grow up! Not me!”
J.M. Barrie

     Childhood is all too brief, at least from the standpoint of parents.  But I remember as a child it seemed to stretch all too long, and I was always anxious for it to end.  I wanted to grow up.  I wanted to be tall, not small.  I wanted to know everything, like grownups did.  Boy!  Was I in for a surprise! 

     One of life’s great discoveries upon achieving “adulthood” was that we not only didn’t have all the answers, we didn’t even seem adequately prepared for the “test.”  There was so much more to be learned – a whole lifetime of learning ahead.  What could be more exciting? 

     And even though I’m in my eighth decade, I’m still not quite finished growing up.  There are many more trees for me climb.  You really can’t beat the view from up there.

What trees have you climbed lately?

  Coming next week...
Table Set in a Garden - painting by Pierre Bonnard, c.1908
Also, visit my co-author's blog at
See his ten-part series on photo prompts to inspire writing at

And Don’t Miss…

            English teacher Mara Dukats and writer-photographer Cynthia Staples’ poems “white on white” and “The Absence of Color.” They’re in Part Four of Hank Kellner’s  twelve-part series THE POWER OF PHOTOS TO INSPIRE WRITING at the Creativity Portal  website,  as well as Anna J. Small’s writing assignment in "Viewing and Writing about Photos from Around the World"
            Also, read more about Reflect and Write in the SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL

Another Helpful Source for Inspiration

For more photos and information not included in this blog, please visit Reflect and Write contains more than 300 poems and photos; keywords; quotations; either “Inspiration” or “Challenge” prompts; a “Themes to Explore” section; a “Twelve Ways to Inspire Your Students” section; a special “Internet Resources” section, and more. Includes CD with photos and poems from the book. Reflect and Write: 300 Poems and Photos to Inspire Writing by Hank Kellner and Elizabeth Guy (Prufrock Press, 2013), 153 pages, $24.95.

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