IMAGE EXERCISE
Even mundane objects can take on a special meaning when rendered as a poetic image. Consider:

A red balloon, bobbing uncertainly
On a string tied to the wrist
Of a weary boy
Breaks free, and floats hopefully skyward
Fading rapidly into a tiny blood spot.

Kids lose balloons, and it’s not tragic—unless you’re the kid! The hopefulness of the balloon, free at last, contrasts with the implied loss that the boy must feel. He is tired, perhaps worn out from a fair. Tragedy on a small scale (it’s a tiny blood spot, not a bloodbath) smarts nevertheless, and can happen quickly. All of these ideas are packed into a single, relatively simple image.

What kind of poetic imagery might evolve around the following scenarios? Control your image with descriptive and economic language. Remember: Images can be controlled both by what you include and what you consciously do not include. Readers have imaginations, but you have to give those imaginations something concrete to go on. Write your responses in your notebook—this will be collated so that you can print or e-mail your work when you are finished.

A couple, kissing for the first time (described by an outsider)

A city seen from an airplane

A feather floating on a pond


 
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