Can poems take care of someone? (5th)

We continued talking about the purpose of art and poetry today, while reading several poems of Naomi Shihab Nye. We listened to her perform “Gate A-4” and then we read “Red Brocade.” We decided that for Nye, the purpose of art is to spread kindness and empathy. We talked about the ways poems can do that and found it really interesting how “Red Brocade” directly offers to care for the reader, with mint tea and rice and a cozy pillow. We thought about the kinds of kindness we would want to spread in the world and wrote poems to take care of someone.

Act of Kindness for Friends

If I were to see
you walking on the concrete
sidewalks, I’ll invite you to my

A long day of school.
Walking home in the grassy
Seeing the sunflowers bloom.
Remembering you’re in my APARTMENT!?
Oh yeah..I forgot.

Well you can take my memory foam bed.
It’s really fine. I don’t mind.
Feeling alone? You can have my
dinosaur plushie. His name is Kai!
Don’t have comforting clothes?
I can lend you my polyester hoodie.
Are you hungry? I can make you some
shin ramen.

To Kids of Palestine

Hi, here is a jacket to keep you
warm and a big nice warm blanket
if you feel sleepy. Here is some food
and shwarma and rice and extra
white sauce to keep you full and
here is a drink and a lot of water.
And here is a bag to put your stuff in it.
And here are toys and other games
to keep you entertained and to have fun.


Here mom, have some medicine.
I also made you some tea
for your throat. I also made you
food. Just in case you get
hungry. Here’s some pain killers
to murder the pain away.
Here’s the remote and your
phone. Make sure to eat so
your sickness doesn’t get worse.



“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.