SOL: A World of Babies

twins, singles, boys, girls
the women I know bring life
new and repeat moms
their eyes light with this fresh joy
my knitting hands stay busy

Fourteen women I know have just or will soon have a total of sixteen babies.  It’s pretty amazing.  I am not close enough with all those ladies to be knitting for all those babies, but the nine women I’ll be knitting for includes one set of twins, and ten babies is plenty to keep up with!

(I had planned to contribute a prize for the SOL challenge last month, but seeing how many baby things I had lined up made that impossible.  Maybe next time?)


I’ve hit almost exactly the note I’ve been looking for with a couple of these tanka.  Still a long way to go, though.  I continue to look at the idea of the third line making a pivot point.  When done correctly, lines 1, 2, and 3 and lines 3, 4, and 5 can be read as complete, separate poems.  The first makes a traditional haiku.  The second makes a katuata in its original form.  I rearranged today’s tanka a few times to get a third line that fell into place properly.

Is it obvious that I’m having some fun with this tanka-learning experience?  I talked to my morning class about it today, gave them a mini-challenge for spring break.  I know some students will deftly rise to the challenge — I can see I have more than a few ‘natural’ poets in the class — others will have to stretch a bit.   I can’t wait to see what they bring back to class after break!

is hosted by Stacey and Ruth at Two Writing Teachers


12 thoughts on “SOL: A World of Babies

  1. Ashley Dawn

    That is a lot of babies.
    I have 3 blankets to make so far this year—I need to get started soon.

    Love the tanka’s- keep them coming.


    1. It is a lot of babies. One year, we had seven women — two staff, five students (day program, where my students are all adults) — due all in the same month! In the five years since we moved into our location, we have always had at least one pregnant or newly-parenting woman in the building. Good thing the word ‘family’ is in the name of our center!


  2. I love that closing line…you knit, you teach, you write! I’m impressed. I keep saying I need to MAKE something with my hands; it’s such a different experience, working outside your head, shaping something tangible. I tell people I can’t knit cuz I’m left-handed. Gramma tried to teach me, but no go…


    1. There is really something special about making things. I love being able to try new patterns, new designs, love to see what comes of all the knitting, sewing and jewelry making. And I really love seeing the faces on the people I give my creations to! There must be a left-handed knitting guide out there somewhere … I’ll keep my ear to the ground and let you know.


  3. juliebrock

    Yay for knitting. I love the process of making things with my hands, I scrapbook, but no knitting for this kid 🙂

    I like your tankas, too.


  4. I just happened upon your blog and I love your change-uppable poem! And I’m experiencing the same baby wave. My list of new moms I know between last May and the next one is sixteen – including my hairdresser and my dentist.


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