Sunday's Delta Mermaid

I thought I'd recap a poem I sent to Laura Shovan for NPM and her clothing theme.  I did skirts.  And at the end, I have further work on the Progressive Poem's mermaid.  I'm just working on it, like a piece of writing.  Yesterday was the first stage, today is the second stage.
I'm still working on this...there are parts I don't like, so retrying.
Drawing is like writing...
the balance, the fit, the perspective
Like writing, I'm not sure we ever think it is "just right" and leave it alone.
The image above irks me.  There are parts that I really like.  There are parts that don't fit the way I want them to.
This happens in writing, too.
Another day - changes and additions
Because this is my picture and I am practicing, I have opted to erase legs and try again.  The others were too long for as young a girl as I was envisioning.  Then they looked like they started too low.  Unfortunately with a pencil, I can't just select, cut and reposition... So the eraser gets used a lot.  Here's the 45th try (okay, I don't know that it is the 45th, I just know I've messed with it LOTS...erasing and trying again).  I still have pieces I am going to work in.  Or I may set it aside and try another.  And another.  And another.  Just like with writing.
And someday one will come out MAYBE the way I was dreaming it would.

Here is my poem to go with "Tutu Girl":

when I was but a little girl
I loved to twirl
and swirl
my spinning skirt would billow out
I had no doubt
my dream that I was born to dance
as in a trance
I’d prance
with leaps and bounds, my pointed toe
smooth rhythm flow
upon my stage of grassy glade
in verdant shade
a maid
in skirt with pleats of flower hue
one day time flew
and blew
into the now my skirt was swept
no promise kept
I wept.

©Donna JT Smith, 2015
In some ways I think writing poetry and dancing are very similar, too.  You need a music and a rhythm, you need a flow, you need heart and soul, and you need to breathe it in and out.  I gave up dance, but found a new dance in poetry, but I like to dance a little in drawing, too...

Teachers check out Lit2Go:  It is a free collection of stories and poems in audio and pdf formats.  There are also many that have a word count, the reading level and activities for your classroom.

And lastly, don't forget to check out the Progressive Poem.  The next line is being added by Brian at Walk the Walk.  
Part 2 - more shading and lines, minor perspective and size changes.
I decided to put this image up again after further work on it...some additions and changes.  This is mostly for myself.  I have found that when I take a picture of a drawing or hold the drawing up to a mirror, I can see flaws in the perspective especially, that I can't see after a while of working on it.  It is a lot like writing that way.  Too close to the work, and you don't see obvious things.  I'm too close to this one now, and I'm afraid I won't see what is wrong.  I can see some things I want to fix, but right now I don't have just the right "word" for it, so I'm stopping again until tomorrow or the next day.  Fresh eyes can see things better - just like in writing.


  1. Happy to see you're at the drawing again, and love both these, and your revisions, too. The 'leg' changes really do create a younger dancer! I've become so interested in the connection between art and writing/reading, pushing on my students to 'imagine' what they're writing in images and the same when they read. I'm lately reading a book that talks about that "What We See When We Read" by Peter Mendelsund. Love the post, Donna.

  2. I'm in massive revisions right now for my next novel and I can SO relate to this! It feels like you're constantly reworking and rethinking things.


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