We stack up thirty sea-slick sticks,
and figure that it’s plenty.
But stacking sure is fun, and so
we stack an extra twenty.
The trick is lashing them. You need:
some twine, some time, a brother.
Two go up. Three fall down—
oops! Stack and lash another.
We wrap the hut with tattered tarp
and seaweed washed ashore,
then gather dune-grass, twigs, and shells
to pave our sandy floor.
Our driftwood hut is secret—thick
with salt-wind rushing through.
Just big enough to whisper in—
my brother and I, we two.
Copyright © 2013 Renée LaTulippe. From the book The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science. Pomelo Books. Reprinted by permission of the author.
I live on the coast of Tuscany, and in winter the beaches are full of driftwood and bamboo. My little boys often make bamboo teepees, and I love watching their engineering skills in action. Another beach is full of driftwood huts made by beachgoers and used for shade in the summer—or as forts and dinosaur caves, depending on how young you are at heart!
Renée M. LaTulippe has co-authored nine early readers and a collection of poetry titled Lizard Lou: a collection of rhymes old and new for All About Learning Press, where she is also the editor, and has poems in The Poetry Friday Anthology Middle School and Science editions. She developed and teaches the online course The Lyrical Language Lab: Punching Up Prose with Poetry and creates children’s poetry videos for her blog NoWaterRiver.com. Renée holds theater and English education degrees from Marymount Manhattan College and New York University, and taught English and theater in NYC before moving to Italy, where she lives with her husband and twin boys.