Mrs. LaPlump weighed 300 pounds.
Her husband weighed 202.
“I’ve got to lose some weight,” she said,
I’ll give up potatoes and pizza and bread.”
Mr. LaPlump said, “I will, too.
My darling, I’ll do it for you.”
So each of them lost 100 pounds,
And he only weighed 102.
“I’ve got to lose more weight,” she said.
“This next 100,” said he, “I dread
For when we are finished I’ll only weight 2,
But darling, I’ll do it for you.”
They lost another 100 pounds,
Her figure was perfect and trim,
But there is a lesson here I think,
Mr. LaPlump continued to shrink
And one day disappeared down the sink,
And you may find this grim, my dears,
But it was the end for him.
Copyright © 1994 David L. Harrison. From the book The Boy Who Counted Stars. Boyds Mills Press. Reprinted by permission of the author.
One day I was shopping for groceries when I noticed a rather overweight couple buying a large sack of potatoes. My own waistline groaned with envy, for the potatoes that is. I made up my mind on the spot to go on a diet. That never happened but at least I wrote about a diet and that’s practically the same thing. Right?
Sometimes a subject is so appealing that it can support an entire classroom full of poems. Diet is one of them. However, if you’d rather spread out the assignment (awful pun intended), then make a list of resolutions and let your poets choose something from that.
David L. Harrison has published eighty-nine books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction for young readers and educational books for teachers. He is poet laureate of Drury University and David Harrison Elementary School is named for him. His work has been anthologized in more than 120 books, translated into twelve languages, sandblasted in a library sidewalk, painted on a bookmobile, and presented on television, radio, podcast, and video stream. Let’s Write This Week with David Harrison is a 20-episode video program that brings writing tips into elementary classrooms and offers graduate college credit for teachers. David holds degrees from Drury and Emory universities. Two universities have presented him with honorary doctorates of letters. His poetry collection, Pirates, represented Missouri at the 2013 National Book Fair in Washington, D.C.