Note: In Pod Eight, Grammy and Eli talk about when we sometimes need encouragement—or inspiration from others—we hear a poem about a gymnast, and then we meet the gymnast! She is Grammy’s daughter and Eli’s mom, Sally. Sally talks about why she wrote when she was young, talking about our feelings, and her work now as a medical assistant! The activity is to read a book by Dr. Seuss, who was a master of rhymes! Please share this post! Click here to start at the beginning of the Poem Pod series.
Grammy: Hi everyone, Eli and I are here, bringing you Poem Pods—fun poems for fun people. Even after eight days of poems and telling stories, we are still smiling under our masks.
Eli: Hi everybody. Thanks for coming back!
Grammy: You know what I want to talk about today, Eli?
Eli: Let me guess, writing?
Grammy: Well, yes, but not at first.
Eli: What then, Grammy?
Grammy: You know how sometimes you just don’t believe in yourself? Do you know what I mean?
Grammy: Well, I want to talk about that. I want to tell the story of a time I didn’t believe in myself. I was a senior in college. I had done an internship at the Springfield newspaper, which is called The Republican now, and I was about to graduate. My advisor, Dave, connected me to a job at the newspaper, and he had the big boss call me on the telephone. I told the big boss I didn’t think I would be very good at the job and that he should find someone else to do it. When I told Dave, he was mad at me, and he called me a name that I can’t say right now on Poem Pods; it wasn’t a good thing. He told me to call the big boss back and say I wanted the job and that I’d be good at it. And I did call back. But I was scared. I was scared to be a reporter, and I didn’t believe I could do it. Do you ever need someone to push you, Eli? Or someone to give you confidence?
Eli: Sometimes, yeah.
Grammy: Sometimes inspiration doesn’t come from within us. Sometimes it comes from outside of us. I am very grateful to my advisor. I loved being a reporter, and I wouldn’t have done it if he didn’t make me feel brave enough to try.
Grammy: Is there anything you have needed mom or dad to push you into doing because you were afraid?
Eli: Yeah, when I was a little kid and I first started playing baseball, I was kind of scared to try it, and mom and dad had to push me to go to practice, and I was really nervous to go to my first game. They had to push me to do that, too. But now I really like baseball, and I’m really good at it and I’m really good at other sports.
Grammy: That’s good. Yeah. Sometimes, we just need a little push. When I was in high school, I was afraid to be a gymnast when I was young, but mommy, when she was young, she never needed a push to be on the gymnastics team. She loved it, and she was really good at it when she was growing up! Today’s poem was actually inspired by your mom, Eli. She always won all the blue ribbons at the gymnastic meets. Today’s poem is called:
She gets up,
She’s my favorite.
I score her a “10!”
Eli: I like that poem.
Grammy: It’s too bad you can’t get to see Mommy do her gymnastics! That would be cool.
Eli: Yeah, she hurt her knee.
Grammy: Yes, she did. The other poem I want to read today was written by mommy when she was very little. I’m going to guess she was in second or third grade. Here’s what she wrote, and the poem doesn’t have a title:
Night winds blew.
I turned two.
“Goodnight,” I said.
Had to go to bed.
Tonight was special.
That day was nice.
I got a vice.
Grammy: Mommy liked writing when she was young. She wrote little books. She wrote poems. She wrote letters, and she had a journal for a short while too.
Eli: I have a question. What’s a vice?
Grammy: A vice? It’s a tool. It’s like when you want to squeeze something together, you put it in a vice. You tighten it, and maybe you glue it and when you loosen the vice up, it stays together.
Grammy: So, what do you think if we invited Mom on today to see what she remembers about writing and her inspirations back then?
Eli: I think it would be great idea. I really like mom.
Grammy: I really like mom too! We don’t even have to call Mommy. She’s already sitting here, so it’s actually very convenient, right?
Eli: Hi Mom!
Grammy: Hi Sal! Thanks for coming on our Poem Pods show!
Sal: Thanks for having me!
Eli: Mom, can I interview you about what you liked to write about when you were young?
Sal: Sure. I’d love that!
Eli: What did you like to write about, and how did you get ideas?
Sal: I liked to write about my environment, about nature, and about my feelings.
Eli: Was it hard to write about your feelings?
Sal: Sometimes, but it also made me feel really good because I could write them down and I didn’t have to say it out loud.
Eli: What did you like about writing?
Sal: I liked that I could express myself and still keep it to myself if I didn’t want to share things, like how I was feeling. But it also made me feel good to share things that I did want to share with people.
Eli: Do you still write stories or poems now?
Sal: I don’t usually write them down anymore, but I do write them in my head.
Sal: I’m really busy! I have a son, as you might know, and I have a little baby daughter too. And I work.
Eli: I know what you do for work, but tell everybody else.
Sal: I’m a medical assistant, and I work in a primary care doctor’s office.
Eli: Can you explain what a medical assistant is, for our younger audiences?
Sal: So, a medical assistant is the person that usually calls you into the doctor’s office and asks you a whole lot of questions and takes your vital signs, like your blood pressure and your temperature. Sometimes, I give shots too.
Eli: What do you like best about your work?
Sal: I like that I can connect with people and help them express themselves and help them feel better when they’re not feeling well.
Eli: That’s good because sometimes, when I’m not feeling well or I get hurt, and it’s only you there, you can help me because you know these things.
Sal: That’s right.
Eli: Well, mom. I’ll see you later for dinner, when Grammy and I are done. Thanks again.
Sal: Okay, Eli. Don’t forget to wash your hands!
Eli: I know. I know.
Grammy: Sally, thank you for coming on Poem Pods. That was very good information. Hey Eli, what do you suggest as an activity today?
Eli: Reading a Dr. Seuss book! Dr. Seuss was a master of rhyming and being clever with sounds and stories!
Grammy: That’s a great idea. My dad, you know, Grampy, used to love to read me Dr. Seuss stories. My two favorites are “The Cat in the Hat” and “The Glunk that Got Thunk.” What are your favorites, Eli?
Eli: I like “The Cat in the Hat” and “I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today.”
Grammy: That was a good one. (“I Can Lick 30 Tigers Today.”) That was one of Grampy’s favorites too. Remember everybody, you don’t have to make rhymes when you tell a story, but sometimes it’s fun, isn’t it? It’s more challenging to tell a story in a poem.
Eli: Post some of your rhymes on my Grammy’s blog in the comments, or on her Facebook page.
Grammy: Also, please share any and all of these Poem Pods with kids and parents you know far and wide. I want lots of people to get to hear these stories about inspiration, writing, and poems!
Eli and Grammy: That’s the end of the eighth Poem Pod. Remember… We are smiling under our masks, and we hope you are too!