Skip to main content

The BURP Poem

Sometimes a single word can  spark an idea for creating poetry. So upon hearing a man burp/belch while walking along the street a couple of days ago, I began to ponder the word burp. A poet can never be sure what will spark an idea, but it pays to be ready when inspiration strikes.


When I was growing burping was not something my parents approved of. It was always considered socially unacceptable or simply bad manners to make such noises. however I also learned that in some cultures, notably Chinese and Indian, burping was regarded as acceptable in certain situations.

Burping after a meal can be seen as a sign of appreciation, and being well fed. In  other cultures such as Japan, Northern America and Europe, burping during a meal is considered bad manners.

Burping is probably one of those inappropriate things that we also find funny. To hear a loud burp suddenly emerge from a baby is something most of us consider quite amusing. It's hard not to laugh. Some people possess the special ability to burp on command. Never been able to do that myself. -More of a party trick than a useful skill,I would think.

Anyway, all this talk and thought about the word BURP lead me to my latest poem. I felt somewhat irreverent and naughty writing this poem, but what fun I had too. It was a poem that suddenly emerged without much warning- somewhat like a BURP.

Soup On Sunday Night
One Sunday night at our place
The family gathered round
Mum made Minestrone soup
And we ate like hungry hounds

Mum and Dad and Grandma
Uncle Dave and Grace
Me, and little sister Meg
Bowls and spoons in place

You could hear the clinking of the spoons
Slurps and swallows too
Such a winter warmer
With plenty for me -and you.

Then from the head of the table
Grandma rose from her chair.
We all put down our soupy spoons
And at her we did stare.

From her mouth did tumble
Not a single word,
But instead the biggest, loudest BURP
That we had ever heard.

It rattled the windows.
It slammed shut the door.
I doubt that a burp
Has ever done more.

The table lamp flickered.
The cat dashed for cover.
We all looked aghast
Especially, Mother. 

We stared in amazement
At what had beset her.
But Grandma just smiled  
And announced- Ah, that feels better!








Comments

  1. I suspect I taught middle school for too long because I find burps funny--and your poem, too. Thank you for bringing a smile and laugh today. I'm not in too much control of my burps, but I had a friend in college who could burp recognizable songs.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's okay to find burps funny Kay. Secretly most of us do. To be able to burp songs is a rare talent.

      Delete
  2. I had heard that in some cultures burping is a compliment. As a K teacher, I constantly stifle my own giggles at some of the burping that takes place in my classroom! :-) -- Christie @ https://wonderingandwondering.wordpress.com/blog/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In junior classrooms there are numerous unexplained noises Christie and stifling a smile, a smirk or an audible laugh can prove quite difficult.

      Delete
  3. This made me laugh! My mother had a funny thing she would say upon burping.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm glad you got a laugh from my poem Jone. You've left me hanging regarding your mother...

      Delete
  4. Fun poem, those naughty society no-nos are often great for inspiration!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I so agree Michelle. We all like to thumb our noses at polite society occasionally.

      Delete
    2. I so agree Michelle. We all like to thumb our noses at polite society occasionally.

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

When Poetry Visits The Traveller

I really enjoy the poems that emerge from my immediate engagement with places I visit.

When a poem arises from visiting a particular place, it is a joy for my poet's heart. I have written before about the 'poetry of place.' I recognise its strong influence on my writing. I look forward to the words that come flooding my way.

This little poem came to me during my very recent trip to Vietnam. It was a response to the morning skies that greeted me in the city of Hanoi. I stepped out and into the busy streets of the city's bustling old quarter and the skies above me were brooding, grey and heavy with expectation.It was all set up for me to notice- and I embraced the moment.

I encourage all young poets to be open to poetry ideas related to place. Ideas frequently present themselves whenever we do some mindful meandering in new or unfamiliar places. We must remain open to possibilities, wherever we go in this world.


Hanoi Morning
The sky
Seamless
Grey
Drapes itself suffocatingly
Over…

Compound Interest POEM

I cannot claim credit for thinking of this idea, but I have had a lot of fun making this poem using compound words. I have used the words to sing the praises of someone special in my life- my wife, Vicki. I invite you to try this simple, yet effective approach to writing poetry. It is a fine example of word play. In this case playing with compound words. Poetry fun to share...



Compound Interest
You are the jingle in my bells The tick in my tock The flash in my light The spring in my time The whirl in my wind The tell in my tale You are the ever in my lasting The ginger in my bread The life in my boat It has to be said








The Words of Student Poets

Recently I had the special treat of working with Year 7 poets from Brighton Primary School in Adelaide. During the day we closely examined a range of poetic structures and devices and applied them to our writing of poetry.
With one group I introduced Suzanna Marshak’s  powerful book ‘I Am The Ocean’ to alert these enthusiastic poets to the potential power of writing through a mask and using personification. Another group looked at personification through their connection to things in the world around them. 

Using the poem, ‘I Am These Things And More’ as a model.  Students were challenged to think about these important connections. A particular focus of the writing was to try to incorporate effective use of repetition, line breaks, simile and white space in their composed pieces.
These young poets talked in groups and identified their targets for personification. They rehearsed their opening lines. They rechecked the list of craft moves available to them and then they set about writing t…