Write Mondays

Writing Workshops for Middle and High School Students in Central Vermont

Write Mondays offers writing workshops for middle and high school students in Central Vermont. We believe in nurturing young writers at every level and challenging students to explore the myriad of writing choices available to them. Kid-centered workshops led by master teachers provide a supportive community where generating, sharing, and critiquing work happens at the group level. But most of all, Write Mondays is about fostering creative expression and translating it onto the page. Workshops are held at Local 64 in Montpelier, VT. 

Poem City at Local 64

Poem City

The Criminelle

Write Mondays' Poem City Workshop featured the first usage of a new poetic form: The Criminelle. The form was inspired by The Story's radio podcast about Luc Sante's translation of Novels in Three Lines—a collection of newspaper crime reports written in 19th century France by the poet and impresario Felix Feneon.
The Criminelle features the six stanza set-up and line-repetition scheme of the villanelle, except that the repeating lines are taken from the Times Argus' Montpelier newspaper police logs, published each Tuesday. Three brave pioneers took the criminelle challenge—Take 2 lines from the log to form the framework for the repetition and the jumping off point for the poem.  Add original lines to complete the poem and tell a story that links the 2 repeated lines. You will notice that the first and third line of the first stanza are the actual lines from the logs. These lines are repeated in the successive stanzas using the villanelle pattern. Their poetry, still in the draft stage, is presented here. We hope they inspire you to to write criminelles of your own.

 

By George Drew

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

River Street starts on the end of Main.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street.

 

How are these things things related to one another?

The woman in the red jacket looked just like my missing mother.

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

 

Was the woman in red looking for the charm?

At any rate she was doing no harm.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street.

 

A powerful light lit up the whole area.

And people said there was nothing scarier.

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

 

A red jacket was seen rising up in the light

And the charm was glowing brighter than the light.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street

 

The woman with the red jacket was never there.

The silver charm bracelet went up in the air

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street.

 

By Newton Baker

Someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

On Deerfield Drive gardens grazed to roots were complete

“Threats to kill” were heard on Cummings Street

 

A man stood-stared-and stammered curses toward the sky

The future plan to feed his family filled instead the path of some beasts feet

Someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

 

Though strong believer in amendment #2

there was no gun to have the garden’s back

“threats to kill” were heard on Cummings St

 

emotions rage in those aggrieved

with flash mob visions of revenge

someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

 

Defensive fences or offense attack?

you eat me, I’ll eat you

“threats to kill were heard on Cummings Street

 

Robin Hood might be the best way to go

where ghostly figures fight dark shadows in the night

Someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

“Threats to kill” were heard on Cummings Street

 

By Mary Carmel

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

Where did it lie each drop of his pleasure?

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 block.

 

As if those pearls and gems could stoke his tinder,

when lust, love and dreams were his longing true.

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

 

When his watch melted into the landscape

and his dreams blew away.

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 Block

 

His hands curled up trying to catch the warmth in the cup

his eyes closed to miss the freezing up.

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

 

As the lock broke open and his opals turned to plastic

each tiny swarofski looked fantastic

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 Block.

 

All gone now into the night

Gone to the fence Jackie Frost.

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 Block.