This was the first poem that I ever memorized, thanks to my third grade teacher, Mr. Lightburn, who had an affinity for poetry. He encouraged me to memorize over 100 poems that year, as well as write poetry of my own. When I was in fourth grade, Mr. Lightburn retired from teaching, and I wrote him a poem to thank him for the gift he had given me.
“Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”
by Robert Frost
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.
My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.
He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
The woods are lovely, dark and deep.
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
Teachers and mentors can do a lot towards setting writers on a writing path. It really only takes a little bit of interest on their part to give us the push we need.
ah yes, an early favorite of mine, too, discovered around age 8 in a slim anthology of my engineer dad’s college days. little did he know what leaving that book on the shelf would do to his daughter!
Memorising 100 poems? I know it’s no different from remembering the lyrics to favourite songs, but even so, that’s a lot.