For today's creative writing prompts, first enjoy the photo and read this week's American Life in Poetry column below. After you gaze, enjoy and read, you can choose to either start a story from the setting of this old house, write a poem about any old house, or write an essay about any house from your life.
Old house, Dendron, VA
American Life in Poetry: Column 333
BY TED KOOSER, U.S. POET LAUREATE, 2004-2006
Here is a lovely poem by Robert Cording, a poet who lives in Connecticut, which shows us a fresh new way of looking at something commonplace. That’s the kind of valuable service a poet can provide.
Old Houses by Robert Cording
Year after year after year
I have come to love slowly
how old houses hold themselves—
before November’s drizzled rain
or the refreshing light of June—
as if they have all come to agree
that, in time, the days are no longer
a matter of suffering or rejoicing.
I have come to love
how they take on the color of rain or sun
as they go on keeping their vigil
without need of a sign, awaiting nothing
more than the birds that sing from the eaves,
the seizing cold that sounds the rafters.
American Life in Poetry is made possible by The Poetry Foundation, publisher of Poetry magazine. It is also supported by the Department of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Poem copyright ©2010 by Robert Cording from his most recent book of poetry, Walking with Ruskin, CavanKerry Press, Ltd., 2010. Reprinted by permission of Robert Cording. Introduction copyright ©2011 by The Poetry Foundation. The introduction's author, Ted Kooser, served as United States Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress from 2004-2006. We do not accept unsolicited manuscripts.
American Life in Poetry provides newspapers and online publications with a free weekly column featuring contemporary American poems. The sole mission of this project is to promote poetry: American Life in Poetry seeks to create a vigorous presence for poetry in our culture. There are no costs for reprinting the columns; we do require that you register your publication here and that the text of the column be reproduced without alteration.
Old Houses by Robert Cording : American Life in Poetry