Autobiographical poem

Poem:  “Fire”

Poet:  Judy Brown

Book:  Teaching with Fire:  Poetry that Sustains the Courage to Teach edited by Sam M. Intrator and Megan Scribner

“What makes a fire burn

is space between the logs,

a breathing space.

Too much of a good thing,

too many logs

packed in too tight

can douse the flames

almost as surely

as a pail of water would.”

When I first read this poem, I knew it was a warning for me.  I have always tried to cram too many things into my days and life.  I teach (and according to my husband, I spend way too much time at school or grading papers).  I lead the youth at my church.  I volunteer at a therapeutic riding center with my daughter.  I help cook and serve at my church’s soup kitchen.  I chauffeur my daughter to various practices and lessons and clubs.  These are all good things, but if I don’t give myself space between activities, my passion for life is extinguished just as surely as cramming too many logs on a fire will put it out.

2 Comments on Autobiographical poem

  1. haybug(: (Hailey E)
    April 20, 2012 at 2:47 pm (5 years ago)

    do you like poetry personally?? i like reading it better then reading a regular book…

    • Mrs. McGriff
      April 25, 2012 at 12:34 pm (5 years ago)

      I do like poetry. I’ve even been known to carry a poem around with me if I connect with what it says. Have you tried reading novels in verse where the poems go together to tell a story? I’d be glad to show you some of my favorites.


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