Poem Activity

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To A Squirrel At Kyle-Na-No

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Poem Activity

Have fun with the poem by trying this...

There are only 35 words in this poem (not counting the title) and they are shaped into short lines with just two heavy beats and 4 or 5 syllables. In the first line, for example, the heavy beats fall on ‘play’ and ‘me’.

Your challenge this week is to work out how you can help your listener to 'catch' the mood and meaning of the poem in so few words.

Try saying this poem as fast as you possibly can, as though the squirrel you want to be friendly to will run away before you can blink.

Then try saying it slowly in whispers, as though you can encourage the squirrel to stay if you are gentle.

Try these approaches out with a listener. Which do they like best? Is there another way of performing the poem that works better?

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Come play with me;
Why should you run
Through the shaking tree
As though I’d a gun
To strike you dead?
When all I would do
Is to scratch your head
And let you go.

To A Squirrel At Kyle-Na-No

by W.B. Yeats