How to Write a Ditty

This month’s guest poet at Today’s Little Ditty is poetry superstar David Harrison (I had the good fortune to rub elbows with David and witness his magic at a Highlight’s Foundation workshop a few years ago–an experience I heartily recommend!) David challenged us to write a poem using the word “ditty.” When I read Diane Mayr’s morse code ditty today, a ditty poem started rumbling in my head. Here’s my bit of fluff:

How to Write a Ditty

A ditty should be witty
And a ditty should be short.
If a ditty isn’t witty
then a reader will not snort.

When a Valentine’s a ditty
bake it sweet as chocolate torte.
(Leave the grime and gritty for a senate subcommittee–
it’s a pity when a ditty is an odious retort.)

But if your ditty starts to wander through a thicket, through a city
and you’re in a sticky wicket and you get a speeding ticket–

STOP! You must abort!

–Buffy Silverman, all rights reserved



Happy Poetry Friday! Kimberley Moran is hosting the round-up. Treat yourself to some poetry goodness.

43 thoughts on “How to Write a Ditty

  1. Buffy, I must have missed this delightful post with a fun ditty. I found a great app, Ditty, that lets you create ditty songs. I created two for National Poetry Month and the NYEDChat’s April is Poetrylicious Twitter chat.

  2. A ditty that ends on abort, visits lands of chocolate, thickets and senate subcommittees, now that is a ditty with a grand design, political ambition and good taste. A ditty to be proud of. One that went to college, remembered to put out the trash on trash day, read the paper, did the crossword and even baked Valentine cookies. I need a ditty like that. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Michelle. Your comment made me look up “sticky wicket” (probably something I should have done instead of writing nonsense…) and I revised my poem to make a teeny tiny bit more sense.

  3. This is not an itty bitty ditty,
    it’s the kind of poem that looks
    simple–unless you want it to be pretty.
    It requires having read a lot of books
    For it clearly really needs someone
    with a great mind and vocabulary. xo

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