013. What Is The Hardest Question?

(image from the net)
(image from the net)

What is the hardest question? Yes, that’s the question. You know, I really want to know the answer. Maybe this question: Who killed Mr. Mister’s cat which killed Mrs. Sunny’s pigeon that ate Mr. Geek’s favourite worm, if Mrs. Sunny and Mr. Geek were already dead that time?  

Actually, that question is very easy. Maybe Mr. Mister killed his cat. But it’s not a fact that he killed his own pet because there is always a possibility. Like, someone else killed his pet or his cat died naturally.

BUT what really annoys me, there are questions that I just do not know the answers to! Especially when it makes my brain feel like a walnut shell – small & empty.

We all know that all questions have answers, but are all questions answered? Probably not.

Questions are answered in different ways: specific or general, factual or opinionated or very imaginative. Questions are also answered shortly or widely, simply or WOWly.

There are many ways of answering questions. So, how will you answer this question? –

What is the hardest question? And one clarification, do you know the answer to the answer? And if you do, then what is the answer? What if you don’t? Is not knowing the answer a big problem? If it is, then why is it a big problem? Is having a big problem a problem or just something to be ignored?

You know, answering these flibbertigibbet questions made my brain explode. But what could be the answer?

It is very hard to get the answer.

That’s it! Now I get it. Answering the question is very hard and that’s the point of the question:

What is the hardest question?

Maybe the hardest question is:

What is the hardest question?

Now I’m done! But there’s another question:

What is the answer to the answer?

I am really going to freak out with these ???

Teacher gave us a prompt: “I am afraid of _____________________. “ I think, if teacher uses that as a prompt again, I’m going to put:

“I am afraid of question marks!!!”

– Daniela, 12


010. (some thoughts on life and writing)

(image from the net)
(image from the net)

Being a writer is being boisterous. It’s more fun than you can imagine. You can have a whole new adventure. Many people may say that being a writer is boring. They may be right, or maybe they’re wrong.

A writer’s adventure can be dangerous yet fun. But as children, we are taught with rules — like not to talk to strangers, not to run in streets, and not to play with fire. But as we get older, always staying safe may prevent us from all what life has to offer. If you never take risks, you never get a chance to have it all. And what’s the fun in that?

While you want to feel safe, you should feel safe; but as a writer, you should run into the Danger instead of away from it. Always staying safe may not be so good, for a writer.

Life can be hard. But for other people, children really, the world is a fairy tale. Where there are big shops for fairy costumes and cowboy hats in the mall. But when we get older, always waking up to reality can be hurtful. In a way that you will know that your inspiration isn’t true. It can harm you and that can turn out as depression.

But it doesn’t mean that believing in fairy tales is a bad influence for children. Fairy tales can be inspiration or the joy of young boys and girls. The whole world has its own way of changing you. It doesn’t tarnish you, or bring out the wicked or the beast in you. It changes you naturally as a person or a child. But what’s important in the real world is seeing the truth or waking up to reality.

– Tim, 13

007. My Favorite Place

(image from the net)

There is a place
that makes me happy when I’m sad
makes me calm when I’m angry
In that place
I have freedom to do anything
without anyone observing me

It is my comfort zone
Sometimes when I’m scared
it comforts me
In that place
I have the silence that
I sometimes need

It is always there when I need it
I can do anything there
without anyone telling me what to do
In that place
no one gives me sermons
no one bothers me

It has a very quiet peace
You can wash away the bad things
that other people do to you
You can release your anger there
in that place
The C.R. is my best bestfriend!

– RJ, 13

004. (untitled poem)

From a young athlete who previously “hated’ writing — 

joseph blue

The loud noises in this place
Are cheers for us to get our pace
It is a race for swimmers
Pro, Amateur, even Beginners

A relaxed me is something you won’t find
Because only winning is on my mind
Even though the beat of my heart is trembling
Maybe because I’ll swim with a king

The reflection of light hits the floor
It is like lightning
That summons the king, Thor
What Am I Thinking?

Bubbles differ in size
To the surface they arise
The noise swimmers hear when my speed I unleash

I sometimes hate swim time
‘Cause I look like an underwater mime
But sometimes I wonder
Maybe there are gold bars under
The place where we are swimming
Maybe tomorrow I will start digging

The feeling of being a champion
Will not be just imagination
I can always break the record
With a big hand from the Lord

– JC

But first, a personal note on process and product:

Children who have attended any of my classes or workshops would tell you that grammar and spelling are the least of my concerns when they are writing drafts or doing 2-minute talks. Content always comes before form, I tell them. So we blabber, quick-write, free-write, list down, list around, make mind maps, think out loud, share in hushed whispers, blurt-out, draft. Draw and doodle, too, if they want.

When I ask them to write, a neatly-written grammatically-perfect single sentence (even if it’s compound-complex) is no match to a hodgepodge of ideas or a consciousness stream scribbled across a half or whole page. At least for me. Oftentimes, there’s bound to be more effective and affective thoughts in the latter. Because that is what we strive for. To squeeze out the words from our brains (and hearts, of course), let them flow through our arms, to hand holding pen or pencil. To drip-out if they don’t flow – onto paper, for eyes to see, for others to share, and then back through wherever vein or nerve it traveled through.

And then we go on, exploring.

Every now and then, a group of those scribbled lines take the form of neatly-written, (acceptably) grammatically-correct fluent narratives. Because later in the process, grammar and spelling and structure become a necessity (instead of a target) to ultimately fulfill the goal of sharing effective and affective word-thoughts. First drafts become second, or third, or fourth drafts. The initial jumble of words find their places among new versions and revisions. Ramblings and imaginings and feelings become writings.

Here are some of those, from a few brave souls who shared a few summer hours together in May 2014. They make me proud. – TesD