Poetry Friday: Definitos

What is a definito, you ask? Created by our brilliant Poetry Friday host, Heidi Mordhorst, a definito is

“…a free verse poem of 8-12 lines (aimed at readers 8-12 years old) that highlights wordplay as it demonstrates the meaning of a less common word, which always ends the poem.”

Heidi is a member of my fabulous critique group, The Sunday Poetry Swaggers, and she challenged us to join her this week in writing definitos. This was definitely a challenge for me! I had no trouble coming up with word possibilities, but once I’d settled on haste, well, let’s just say this poem was NOT written in haste!


Scurry, hurry
Rush, rush, rush
All the world’s a blur.

Hustle, bustle,
Race, race, race
Leave them in the dust.

Dash, dash, dash
At tip-top pace,
Not a minute to waste:

© Catherine Flynn, 2019

I wanted to play with the word placement to emphasize a sense of haste, but I was having trouble formatting in WordPress, so I created this on Canva:

Thank you to my fellow swaggers for all your help in getting this draft to where it is. Be sure to visit them for more definitos.

Molly Hogan @ Nix the Comfort Zone 
Linda Mitchell @ A Word Edgewise 
Margaret Simon @ Reflections on the Teche

Other Poetry Friday friends have written definitos today, too. Visit Mary Lee Hahn @ A Year of Reading and Laura Purdie Salas @ Writing the World for Children to read more. After reading all these definitos, you’ll want to write a few yourself!


12 thoughts on “Poetry Friday: Definitos

  1. YES! I love it that some have wanted to illustrate with fonts, sizes, backgrounds! I also realized that you’ve helped to define the word “haste” used in my other definito “gusto”–that definito tag game we talked about. Thanks for joining me in my brainstorms–I appreciate you and our group so much!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your Canva creation shows your poem off beautifully, Catherine. I love the repetition, makes me hurry through & I imagine that’s what you want for this word.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the word play–especially in the version you created on Canva that uses spacing so well to move the poem. I’m looking forward to reading more definitos and trying to write my own. It looks like a fun challenge.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Catherine, while I hastily posted my PF piece just now before the clock struck twelve (I have been at a state ed conference and celebrating my anniversary with a side trip to Saratoga), you defined exactly what I felt. Great job. Your background image was just the right touch.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Your efforts to define haste, were not in waste, Catherine! 😉 I definitely get the urgency in your standard formatting, but I think the nuances of “haste” (as opposed to, say, rushed) comes across even more in your canva presentation. This is definitely a form I need to try!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s