‘Walkedon’: William Carlos Williams Revisited

The first day of my 10 week residency at Taft with their 8th Grade classroom was filled with energy! The students were eagerly brilliant and so we dug right in to examine William Carlos William’s minimalist Imagist style poem, The Locust Tree in Flower. This poem is inspired by William’s interest in minimal / abstract art of the day (1930s).

Lesson Note: I like using this poem as a starter.  As students juggle words and grammar line by line to describe an object, their attention is turned ‘inside the box’ of a simple poetic form. How do we describe something using minimal words/language. What words do we use/make up?

Here are some of their wonderful examples.

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period One

Clouds
Oliva P.

blue
lively
dancing
above
soft
fluffy
glittery
flowing

Wind
Frank K.

slowly
calm
passive
collective
cool

Untitled
Alana R.

Peeking
Above
Clouds
Sun
Emerging

Dog
Victor B.

House
On
fast thinker
Quickly
Lazy
Under
Loyal
Next-to
slowly
Happy-sleeper

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period Two

The Hospital
Jacob S.

Near
the
sickers
dark
Hospital
hide

grass
Ian K.

grass
quietly
sits
green
contently
onground
sometimes
muddy
walkedon
always

The Yellow FieldGoal
Emanuel C.

Fieldgoal
Near
Above
Beneath
Stands
Sits
Faded
Dead
Calm

The Grass
Sona S.

Green
Messily
Spikes
Throughout
Lifeland
Jaded
Dimly
Irritation

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period Three

Us
Sam A.

nearly
naïve
notion

The People I See
Hope Z.

tired
slowworking
on
slowly
trudging
dreadful

Traffic
Bethany B.

Cars
Speeding
Vronk
Tires
Squiiring
Tired
Air
Slowly
Peprollow
Carefully

Snow
Allyson C.

Calm
Gently beneath our feet
Eager
Icy
Instantly
Innocent
Beautiful
Down to the ground
Throughout

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period Six

Rush
Franky W.

People rushing
lives separate
make their ways swiftly to work
mindthrough the haze

Rainy Day
Kenijah T.

Gloomy

 

 

Sleepy

Pool Floor
Vedikak V.

slimy
cold
wet
hairy
disgustingly
nearly
easily
lazily
pool
floor
keploosh

Ms. Taylor, 8th Grade
Period Seven

Window
Lauren B.

cloudy

ice

frosty

Inside

Against

door

 

Catherine G.
City Silhouettes (buildings)

Among

towering

brikkering

dancing

 

Fallen Pole
Sebastian F.

Falling
Crushing
Roughly
Intensely
Scarefully
Broken
Fence
Intercepting
Polecrash

The Fallen Pole

 

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