“Can I see those new drawings?” asked Amelia.
“Sure. What do you think?”
Amelia studied them carefully.
“They look very poetic.”
“You think so?”
“The colors are calmer and more contemplative. The lines are lighter and more meandersome.”
“Meandersome? Is that a real word?”
“It is if I make it one.”
“And how do you make it one?”
“By writing it,” she said. Then she paused to give more time for me to consider her words. “We need to be able to write.”
She had thought a great deal about this, just as she does with all important things.
“Of course,” I said. “Can you tell me a little more?”
“We need to be able to write.”
“I think I see now,” I said even though I really didn’t.
“I want to be a writer. And Emily does too.”
“What about if you tell me your stories, and I will write them down? I will put your names on them, not mine.”
“I want to make the words. They don’t have to be story words. It doesn’t matter whose name is on the writing.
“It doesn’t matter whether or not people say, ‘Oh, look at those clever chickens. Aren’t they just the most clever chickens ever?’ In fact, I would be happier if people didn’t even know.
“I want to be a writer. I want to make the words myself.”
“What exactly does ‘make the words’ mean?”
“I want to write poetry.”
“I see. That’s a fine thing to write. And it suits you.”
“You really think so?”
“I know so. There’s no better poet than a traveler like you. More importantly, you have seen the real world not only with your eyes, but with your heart as well.”
“That’s true. I never knew I could see with my heart until I flew to the moon and back. I would have never made it home again if I hadn’t been able to see with my heart. Is that what will make me a good poet?”
“Most definitely. Poets say a great deal with only a few words. You are quite good at that too.”
“I have always been a chicken of few words. Everyone says so.” Amelia’s comb blushed a little.
“Yes, and you choose your words very carefully. Still I do wonder how we will work it out so the two of you can write.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, I mean you can’t really hold a pencil or a pen very well.”
“I’m not worried. You will help us.”
“And there is a whole alphabet of letters to learn and then a whole dictionary of words to learn.”
“I’m not worried. You will help us.”
It was pointless to mention any more of the challenges ahead of us. She had won me over, and she knew it.
“Yes, Amelia. I will help you.”
Amelia had believed all along that I would, but she did not take my love for granted. She had faith in me to help her, and so I had faith in her to be a writer, a very special kind of writer, a poet.
“We will find a typewriter for you.”
“Is that a real thing? Not a word you made?”
“It is a real thing. Many great writers of both stories and poems have used a typewriter.”
“How do you use this thing called a typewriter?”
“You do something called ‘hunt and peck.’ That’s all there is to it.”
All of the excitement that Amelia had been holding back, finally exploded with a joyful trill as she leapt into the air.
“I have always been a chicken who is good at both of those things!”
“Then you will be a most excellent poet indeed.”
I looked at the feathers scattered around. They would soon be blown away by the autumn winds, and with them will disappear so many memories of the lives which have given me such joy.
But my Amelia, the poet, will leave me her words, the words she will make.
Each post shares a glimpse into my journey as a writer and illustrator. Every “Like,” “Follow,” and “Comment” is truly appreciated!
This story was inspired by several intersecting coincidences. I had been working on a different style of illustrations which would hopefully be lighter and feel more transient and reflect how I have been feeling about life in general.
Along with that, two of my favorite writers of poetry returned to posting their words on WordPress. Thank you, Will and Roxi and all of the other poets here on WordPress, for giving us more of your words.