I am counting down the days
and knitting. I am amazed
at the butterflies of anticipation,
imagining your eyes, mouth and nose,
your tiny fingers and toes,
the fresh-baked smell from the top
of your head. I can’t wait to sing
the songs I once sang to your mother,
and the ones mine once sang to me.
I have so many stories to tell
and poems to read to you until
your eyelashes flutter and I will keep
watch as you drift off to sleep.
Kim M. Russell, 2018
My response to dVerse Poets Pub Meeting the Bar with a Letter
Björn is our barkeeper today and he tells us that one of the poems he read at school was written by Anna-Maria Lenngren (1754-1817) and entitled: Some words of advice to my dear daughter, if I had one. From the title he realised that it was written in the form of a letter and was about the absence of a daughter. He says that writing a letter to someone, real or imaginary, is one of the oldest forms of poetry, dating back to Horace and Ovid, and can be in the form of a love letter to a dear one, an open letter to a wider audience or a letter to a imaginary friend.
He gives us three things to remember when writing a letter poem. We must think about the person to whom the letter is addressed; about the place we’re writing from; and why we are writing the letter.
As an example and for inspiration, Björn has shared with us a letter poem by Elizabeth Bishop: Letter to N.Y.