My son Woody turned six in November of 2011. That would have been the kindergarten year for most kids, 180 days that mark the beginning of the school career. But Woody did his learning in the big, wide, beautiful world, without school being a part of it.

I'm Teresa Honey, and I kept this blog to document this time in my son's life, to share pictures and stories with far-away friends and relatives, and to add ours to the many stories of families living rich, engaging, loving lives with learning happening all the time and in many forms, totally inseparable from every other part of being human.

Here you'll find 180 or so learning moments recorded from August, 2011 to April, 2012 in the life of a 5-turned-6-year-old radically unschooled kid.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bronze Medal in Poetry

Sometimes this blog catches more than Woody's learning moments, and I think that may be inevitable when we write about the dearest, closest ones in our lives. Kids especially. Everything we do and say and are touches on our children--our philosophies, our politics, or hobbies, phrases, lopsided smiles, songs we hum unconsciously, whether or not we wave to the bank tellers--they're watching it all, picking it up and trying it on, maybe just filing it away under a stack of blue river rocks in the back of their mind to go back and get some other day.

So even though this happened to me, I am posting about it here:

I PLACED IN A POETRY CONTEST! THE FIRST ONE I EVER ENTERED!

I am happy about this. There was a cash prize for my third place win--$25! The organizer of the contest is very funny and makes all three winners sign a piece of paper stating that they will use the money toward forwarding their own creativity--not paying the light bill. And the poems get published in an anthology, details of which I forgot to inquire after. But my friend Starr, who is the person whose first question to me the first time I met her when I first moved to Arkansas, was "Are you into poetry?" won first place! So it was all really, truly wonderful in that here-I-am-in-the-right-place-at-the-right-time kind of a way.

I told Woody when I got home and he said, "You got the bronze medal in poetry, Mama!" Which made me feel just about as keen as anything leading up to now.

And this is funny--it happens often to me like this--I got this little lucky rabbit hit earlier in the day that I might win a prize, and that it might be for this particular poem, even though it wasn't my favorite of the three I submitted. So about an hour before I went to the prize announcement and open mic, I rehearsed this one--only this one--to Woody while Fox was napping. 

He mostly listened, but he did stop and ask what cerulean was. He happened to be wearing a shirt with cerulean stripes (a beloved "preppy" hand-me-down from Jennifer's Isaiah), so I could show him rather than tell him. 


I'm not sure I want to share the poem here. I'm not trying to be coy, just, well, holding a little something back in this moment. But I did get the idea to start another blog when this one is done, which is crazy soon, that may be more about writing, though of course, it will still be all about the boys, too, because I just don't really think a writer can not write about her heart.