I like taking photographs and sometimes the pictures inspire a poem. What I select from the photo - how I frame it - can influence my poem. I recently photographed a butterfly with a torn wing. It's late in the year to see Red Admirals still flying around and, in strong winds, no wonder s/he was a little the worse for wear. When I trimmed my picture it was the shape of a letter box. So then that shape became my 'virtual letter box' through which I imagined looking at the world - and the butterfly - going by. Here's my poem - followed by a writing challenge for you.
I'm looking at life through a letterbox.
It's safe behind closed doors:
No wasp to sting, no sudden shocks,
No threats, no debts, no broken laws.
No fears, no foes, no trampled toes,
No gossipers who mutter by,
But, look! – one lonely butterfly,
Still pretty with a wing that tore.
Poor thing. It has no letterbox.
Poor thing. It has no door.
What I'd like you to try is writing your own poem 'Through a ...' whatever it is you are looking through. It might be a letterbox, too. Or it might be through your fingers, through a telescope; binoculars - held back-to-front; a toilet roll; sunglasses; a glass tank (perhaps you are a goldfish?) Have a go!
by Celia Warren
Poem © Celia Warren 2011