In Her Words

Shyly, she asks, "Is that the picture?"

"It is," she breathes out her own answer before I can reply.

We were in Washington, D.C. viewing an exhibit on photography in American history when she found it.  She saw a copy of the face which had touched her last spring in a co-op class.  The class, an art, history, and writing combination class, was taught by another mom and myself.  We combined the three subjects by using pictures and paintings from American history with accompanying art and writing lessons.

One month we spent studying the photograph of "Migrant Mother" by Dorothea Lange.  If ever we wanted a piece to convey emotion, this was it.  The children learned the story behind the photograph and gained a general sense of the time period.  They were then assigned the task of writing a poem about the picture.  Our oldest daughter, who was 11 at the time, chose to write from one of the little girl's perspectives.  Her poem follows...

A Little Girl's Story

I'm a little girl, one of seven.
I'm only about three
with six other siblings,
five older than me.

I'm a little girl, one of seven.
So many mouths to feed,
how can my mother do it
without a husband's lead?

I'm a little girl, one of seven,
with a tent for a home.
Inside the dark woods
is where I get cold.

I'm a little girl, one of seven,
waiting for this to be over.
So I can be satisfied
and Mother can rest.

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