‘I believe you will be deeply touched.’: Video-Inspired Poems

Students watched a bear cam video similar to the one described in the poem we studied, ‘There was this bear cam’ by critic and poet, Sandra Simonds.  Sandra Simonds charts the formations and deformations of the social and political through the observations of the poem’s speakers, interspersed with the language of social media, news reports, political speech, and the dialogue of friends, children, strangers, and politicians. Then students crafted their own poems based on videos they watched using the vernacular.

LESSON NOTE: ‘Poetry is a body of unprecedented experiences, ‘ said poet Kevah Akbar, in a writers’ workshop I attended. Authors Jack Collom and Sheryl Noethe add:  ‘Much of the fun [of this type of exercise] is the juxtapositions, which can be jagged or unexpected but can point to new meanings.’

Ms. Ruan, 7th and 8th Grade

Description of the Video And Learn to Care
Ziyu C.

If you finish watching the video, I believe you will be deeply touched.
The video records a dog with a stray cat.
Seemingly ordinary play, but everywhere reveals the dog’s protection and concern for stray cats.
It can be seen from the fact that it rescued the stray cat by smell, which is a kind of care, and also reveals the dog’s habit of caring for other creatures.
Maybe we have been undervalued, just like a dog, an animal. But a dog can learn to care.
This also tells us:A lot of things are because of, so there is so, since it has been done, why bother to talk about it. We might as well accept all the bad things in life, learn to care, give people warmth, give people hope, and be a light to others and ourselves.

“Stray Kitten”
Haining L

The cat was outside
The dog adopted the cat
The dog protected the cat from the pool
The cat and dog because friends
Where did it come from?
How does the gray for feel?
I want to know how it takes care of the kitten
Why the kitten on the fools?
If this kitten walked into my house
I would entertain it.

Ms. Wright, 8th Grade

By Crescent D.

It was hilarious
She was trying to get a job
And it was a “karen” giving her the job
They said they’d start her off at $6
She said she couldn’t work with 6 in a funny haitian accent
I laughed then scrolled.

(A Mouse and A Cat.)
By [Meiting L.]

A mouse and a cat like friends and enemies.
Chasing each other through the house.
They are like good old friends back in the day.

As time passes by,the cat and Mouse.
Eventually growing farther and farther from each other.
One day they were good old pals.The next day enemies.

Being a Cat and eating a mouse.
Being a mouse and being chased by a cat.
Differences in between them causes inequality.

Ms. Wright, 8th Grade

Cats and a Comb
By Claire D.

Sara, I saw this video today and it was so FUNNY…

It was a compilation of cats gagging when they hear the sound of a comb scratching.
Their owners would run their fingers through a wide-tooth comb,
And when they gagged, it sounded like a human cat.
I feel bad for laughing but I can’t help it.
It’s so weird.
I gotta show you.

Lucky Cat
By William N.

I saw a video of a cat stuck outside,
And it was fluffy and cute
Outside of a British House
Waiting for its owner
Stuck in the rain
Luckily for the cat there was a kind cop
Knocking on the door for him
Letting him in.




“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.