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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: Poetry Friday, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 2,798
1. Poetry Friday - A January Dandelion

On this cold January day I am sharing a poem from African-American Poetry of the Nineteenth Century: An Anthology (University of Illinois Press, 1992).

A January Dandelion
by George Marion McClellan

All Nashville is a chill. And everywhere
Like desert sand, when the winds blow,
There is each moment sifted through the air,
A powdered blast of January snow.
O! thoughtless Dandelion, to be misled
By a few warm days to leave thy natural bed,
Was folly growth and blooming over soon.

Read the poem in its entirety.


I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Paul at These 4 Corners. Happy poetry Friday friends!

P.S. - Do visit Michelle at Today's Little Ditty to read all the wonderful poems written in this month's challenge, posed by Joyce Sidman. (I have a poem there!)

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2. Poetry Friday: Of so divine a loss by Emily Dickinson

Of so divine a loss
We enter but the gain,
Indemnity for loneliness
That such a bliss has been.
- Emily Dickinson

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.

View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

Learn more about Poetry Friday.

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3. Poetry Friday with a review of The Alphabet from A to Y with Bonus Letter Z

One of the reasons why I love my work is because I love words and language. In today's picture book children will encounter a delicious collection of words and wonderful rhymes, which are presented in a clever alphabet book type format.

The Alphabet from A to Y with Bonus Letter ZThe Alphabet from A to Y with Bonus Letter Z
Steve Martin
Illustrated by Roz Chast
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 5 to 8
Flying Dolphin Press, 2007   ISBN: 978-0385516624
Alphabet books are more varied today than they have ever been. Some are straightforward ABC books that use pictures and single words to help children to learn their alphabet. Others are packed with information about a variety of subjects. In this unique title the author and illustrator have chosen to entertain their audience while they show them that there is a wonderful world of words out there.
   For every letter of the alphabet Steve Martin has created a funny nonsense rhyming couplet in which he introduces some characters who are doing things that are amusing, downright outrageous, or deliciously naughty. In each line of verse Martin uses plenty of words beginning with the letter of the alphabet that is features on that page. On the H page for example we meet Henrietta the hare who "wore a habit in heaven" and who had a "hairdo" which "hid hunchbacks: one hundred and seven."
   Readers will laugh at loud when they read the descriptive couplets, and they will also discover that the accompanying illustrations are packed with things whose names begin with the letter being featured. Thus, on the L page we not only read that Lovely Lorraine is discovering that long Louie has Larry's locket, but in the artwork we see, among other things, a lamppost, a boy licking a lollipop, a loudhailer, and a lawyer.
   As they turn the pages, children will have a wonderful time reading the rhymes out loud and searching the illustrations for hidden objects and words.

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4. Poetry Friday -- The Best of It



Flickr Creative Commons Photo by Heinz-Eberhard Boden

The Best of It 

by Kay Ryan

However carved up
or pared down we get,
we keep on making
the best of it as though
it doesn't matter that
our acre's down to
a square foot.



My acre is feeling like it's down to more like a square inch, but I'm making the best of it.

Paul has the Poetry Friday roundup at These 4 Corners.





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5. Beautiful OOPS Day--Mistakes into Masterpieces

.
Howdy, Campers!

Happy Poetry Friday (link at the end, original poem's in this post)!

If you follow this blog, you'll remember the day we spent with author/illustrator Barney Saltzberg and his marvelous book, Beautiful Oops! (Workman). Well, guess what?

Now there's a worldwide Beautiful Oops! Day!












Tell me if this sounds familiar: you've wrapped the gift for your friend Julie, sealed it in a box, stuck stamps on it and then, as you're listening to the Beatles sing "Hey Jude," you address the package... to Jude. OOPS!

Now what?  Well, if you're Barney, you'll make a weird-looking cartoon heart over the word "Jude"...which sprouts legs and arms, a top hat and cane, and suddenly there's a host of fabulous creatures framing Julie's mailing address...a veritable celebration.  That's a Beautiful Oops...a mistake made beautiful.

The point of this book is to encourage all of us to allow "the magical transformation from blunder to wonder," and as schools all over the world celebrate Beautiful Oops Day (in any month, on any day; a school could decide to celebrate Beautiful Oops Day each month), I wish we'd celebrated it when I was in school!


The Beautiful Oops Day website includes project ideas shared by teachers from all over the world to get you started.  And here's a 1:41 minute video of Barney sharing with young students:


How does this translate to writing?  I just happen to have a perfect example.  Here's a new poem author Bruce Balan sent me just this week; beneath it is his "mistake" backstory:

THE PLAINTIFF CALL OF THE WILD
by Bruce Balan


I submit to the court
that this species
has ignored the proper protocol:
They’ve decided that it’s all
for them
and no one else;
Not fish nor elk
nor tiny eels.
Their ills are real.
They spoil and take
break and forsake
and maul
every spot and plot
and it’s not as if
they don’t know…
They do!
They just ignore,
which underscores
my call.

Please dear Judge,
I do not intend to fawn,
but
I pray the court
will look kindly on my call
before my clients all
are gone.

(c) 2015 by Bruce Balan. All rights reserved.
Bruce (whose newest book, The Magic Hippo, is available at the iTunes store, B&N, and Amazon) explains: "I was going to write a poem called The Plaintive Call of the Wild (it just popped into my head), but I misspelled plaintive and so ran with it…"

Perhaps today's Beautiful Oops lesson is RUN WITH IT!

So, thank you, Barney Saltzberg, for gifting us the space to make mistakes; to be human.Campers, stay tuned: on February 4, 2015, Barney will share a Wednesday Writing Workout on this very blog!


Poetry Friday's at Paul Hankin's These 4 Corners today...thanks, Paul!
 

posted with inevitable mistakes by April Halprin Wayland

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6. Poetry Friday - The House on the Hill

I'm wrestling with writing a villanelle or two, so I've been reading some for inspiration. Sometimes I find this helpful, as it gets me thinking about the importance of those first and third lines. Other times I worry it will influence my writing too much.

When I set out to write a villanelle I always begin with the final two lines, largely because I want them to make sense together and the poem to "work." Because this is the way I write a poem in this form, it's also where I start when I read them. (Don't worry though, I'm not one of those "read the last page of the book first" kind of girls. I would never spoil the ending.)

Here are the first two tercets of a villanelle I'm quite fond of.

The House on the Hill
by Edwin Arlington Robinson

They are all gone away,
      The House is shut and still,
There is nothing more to say.

Through broken walls and gray
      The winds blow bleak and shrill:
They are all gone away.




I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Tara at A Teaching Life. Happy poetry Friday friends!

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7. Poetry Friday with a review of Read-Aloud Rhymes for the very young

Sharing stories with children is something many grownups do by reading aloud in libraries, classrooms, and at home. Doing this not only entertains children, but it also helps them to discover that the written word is a powerful thing. Today I have a review of a book packed full of poems that are perfect for reading aloud.

Read-Aloud Rhymes for the very youngRead-Aloud Rhymes for the very young
Selected by Jack Prelutsky
Illustrated by Marc Brown
Poetry Picture Book
For ages 3 to 6
Random House, 1986, 978-0394872186
Babies, even before they come into the world, are attuned to rhythmic sounds. They hear the beat of their mother’s heart before they are born, and can also hear the rising and falling sound of her voice. They therefore come into the world with a natural inclination to listen to sounds. Rhythmic sounds such as the purr of a car engine and the rumble of a dryer send them to sleep, and bedtime lullabies make them feel loved and safe. Since songs are “nothing more than poetry set to music,” children have an affinity for poems and they enjoy having poems read to them, especially ones that have a lilting rhyme.
   In this collection of two hundred short poems grownups will find verses that were written especially for little children. The poets have taken the short attention span of their audience into account, and they use language that will resonate with their young listeners.
  Some of the poems tell little stories that will amuse children, others describe activities that children enjoy doing, things such as jumping, playing hide and seek, blowing bubbles, playing in that mud, and having a bath. There are also poems that describe animals, places and things that children encounter as they go about their day.
  In addition there are poems that explore the ways in which children can use their imaginations to make their world magical and full of adventures. For example in Wild Beasts a child talks about how “I will be a lion / And you shall be a bear.”
   So often things seen through the eyes of a wondering child gain a depth and a significance that adults no longer know how to find. Many of these poems capture that wonder, and celebrate the marvelous in everyday things and situations. For example in Home, a child describes how he or she collects shells and then goes home. There are only four lines in the poem and yet the scene and the child’s pleasure comes through loud and clear.
   Throughout this splendid book, Marc Brown’s storytelling illustrations and sweet artwork vignettes are paired with the poems.

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8. Poetry Friday -- Potato Chips


Flickr Creative Commons Photo by sriram bala


What do potato chips know?
     You can't resist us.
     There's power in crispness.
     Grease is delicious.

What do potato chips know?
     Our stay is brief.
     Life needs treats.
     Occasionally, salty conquers sweet.

©Mary Lee Hahn 2015




This is my first attempt at a Higher Power poem, a challenge given by Joyce Sidman. I'm trying to write a more serious one. Really, I am. But this will have to do for now. 

Tara has the Poetry Friday Roundup at A Teaching Life.




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9. Poetry Friday: The Sea-Wash by Carl Sandburg

The sea-wash never ends.
The sea-wash repeats, repeats.
Only old songs? Is that all the sea knows?
Only the old strong songs?
Is that all?
The sea-wash repeats, repeats.
- The Sea-Wash by Carl Sandburg

Related posts at Bildungsroman
Fog by Carl Sandburg
Pigeon by Carl Sandburg
Potomac Town in February by Carl Sandburg

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.
View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.
Learn more about Poetry Friday.

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10. More, More, More

Today, I continue our Teaching Authors “What Are We ‘Plotting’ for 2015?” series. Deadlines loom for two educational publisher projects as well as a couple other things I hope to accomplish soon, so I promised myself I would keep this short. What I’m plotting is mostly more of the same: more writing, more submitting, and—this is the new part—more sticking my neck out.

On the first of the year, I wrote about my schedule for 2015. I blocked out more time to exercise and added in some time every week to focus on long-term goals. I have been walking more, which is good for my writing because something about the rhythm makes me think differently. I find myself jotting down notes and dictating text messages to send to my email. When I get home, surprise! Ideas!

my walking companion, Bea
One way I hope to stick my neck out is by participating in Poetry Friday more often. Today, I posted a poem on my blog in response to a challenge Joyce Sidman issued last week in an interview with Michelle Heidenrich Barnes on Today’s Little Ditty: a “Deeper Wisdom” poem, modeled after Joyce’s thoughtful “What Do the Trees Know?” in her gorgeous new poetry collection, Winter Bees & Other Poems of the Cold. I really enjoyed the process, especially with such an inspiring model poem.

I’m also researching editors and trying to submit more manuscripts more regularly. I’d love to participate in conferences. And my web site desperately needs updating. I’d better get to work!

JoAnn Early Macken

P.S. Today's Poetry Friday Roundup is at Live Your Poem. . . with Irene Latham. Enjoy!

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11. Poetry Friday: The Sea-Weed by Elisabeth (Cabazza) Pullen

The flying sea-bird mocked the floating dulse:
"Poor wandering water-weed, where dost thou go,
Astray upon the ocean's restless pulse?"
It said: "I do not know.

"At a cliff's foot I clung and was content,
Swayed to and fro by warm and shallow waves;
Along the coast the storm-wind raging went,
And tore me from my caves.

"I am the bitter herbage of that plain
Where no flocks pasture, and no man shall have
Homestead, nor any tenure there may gain
But only for a grave.

"A worthless weed, a drifting, broken weed,
What can I do in all this boundless sea?
No creature of the universe has need
Or any thought of me."

Hither and yonder, as the winds might blow,
The sea-weed floated. Then a refluent tide
Swept it along to meet a galleon's prow-
"Land ho!" Columbus cried.

- The Sea-Weed by Elisabeth (Cabazza) Pullen

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.

View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

Learn more about Poetry Friday.

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12. Poetry Friday with a review of Book Of Animal Poetry

Many children like to watch animals in zoos and on television. They like to read about real animals in books, and many picture book authors and illustrators use animals as their main characters because they know that their young readers are will be drawn to their creations. Poets too like to write about animals, and today's title is literally packed with animal poems of all kinds.

Book Of Animal Poetry
Book of Animal PoetryEdited by J. Patrick Lewis
Poetry
For ages 5 to 8
National Geographic, 2012, 978-1-4263-1009-6
Many poets love to describe nature and animals in the poems that they write. Some like to go a step further and they “try to imagine the secret lives of animals.” What is it like to be an animal, and to see its world through the eyes of that creature?
   In this remarkable collection of two hundred poems we encounter animals that have just come into the world, those that are big, those that are small, the winged ones, the ones that live in water, the strange ones, the noisy ones and the quiet ones. Some of the poems were written many decades ago and capture the feeling of a different time. Others are more modern and reflect a more contemporary approach to poetry writing. There are poems that rhyme and those that are written in blank verse. Some are funny and others are more completive.
   What makes this collection so special is that the poets don’t only write about animals that are commonplace. They embrace the whole animal kingdom from big whales “always spouting fountains,” to little ladybugs, “Smaller/ than a button, / bigger than a spot.” We drift on the wings of “six geese / rowing across a full moon” and plunge deep into oceans with a seal who “swims / With a swerve and a twist, / a flip of the flipper, / a flick of the wrist.”
   Some of the animals are strangely creepy, like the piranha who will consider “you’re meat” should you ever encounter it. Others are weird but funny, like the baby porcupine who, though it cannot yet climb trees can still raise its quills “and pirouette.” Then there is the armadillo which “From head to tail / It wears a scratchy coat of mail.” Meerkats, anteaters, frilled lizards, sting rays and other oddities also appear on the pages.
   Throughout the book the poems are paired with stunning full-color photographs to give readers an extraordinary journey into the world of animals. The photos provide a wonderful backdrop for poems written by Jane Yolen, Robert Louis Stevenson, Robert Frost, Hilaire Belloc, Michael J. Rosen, Ogden Nash and others.

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13. Poetry Friday -- Languages



I'm between audio books right now, so I'm catching up on podcasts of the NPR TED Radio Hour. Earlier in the week, I was listening to the program, "Playing with Perceptions." One segment features academic activist and poet Jamila Lyiscott. She's a first-generation American. Her parents are from Trinidad and she grew up in Crown Heights in Brooklyn. She's working on her PhD in Literature and Race at Columbia and describes herself as a "tri-tongued orator."

When she was about 19, she was asked to be a guest on an academic panel. After participating in her very best, most polished Academic English, a woman came up to her and told her she was very "articulate."

This is the poem she wrote in response to that experience.



The transcript is here if you'd rather read the poem.

I'm thinking hard about checking my perceptions at the door, especially when it comes to the languages my students speak.


Irene has the Poetry Friday roundup this week at Live Your Poem.




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14. Poetry Friday: Unwritten Poems by William Winter

Fairy spirits of the breeze-
Frailer nothing is than these.
Fancies born we know not where-
In the heart or in the air;
Wandering echoes blown unsought
From far crystal peaks of thought;
Shadows, fading at the dawn,
Ghosts of feeling dead and gone:
Alas! Are all fair things that live
Still lovely and still fugitive?

- Unwritten Poems by William Winter

View all posts tagged as Poetry Friday at Bildungsroman.

View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

Learn more about Poetry Friday.

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15. Poetry Friday with a review of Voices from the march on Washington


When I was in university in England, two events had a big impact on all of us students. We watched the Berlin wall come down, and we saw Nelson Mandela being released from prison. Many of us demonstrated outside the South African embassy in London (including me) calling out for the the South African government to release all political prisoners. All of us grew up in the shadow of the Cold War and it was extraordinary to see the wall come down, knowing that this was the beginning of a new era.

For many young people growing up in the United States during the 50's and 60's, the events associated with the civil rights movement changed their lives. Today's poetry title tells the story of the March on Washington through the eyes of these young people.

Voices from the march on Washington
Voices from the march on WashingtonJ. Patrick Lewis and George Ella Lyon
Poetry
For ages 11 and up
Boyds Mills Press, 2014, 978-1-62091-785-5
Many of us live in places where people of different races, religions, and cultural backgrounds live together. We embrace the fact that our streets, restaurants, schools, offices, and other places are full of people who are from different racial and ethnic backgrounds. We recognize that diversity makes our towns and cities richer. This was not always the case. For decades most of the south and some places in the northern parts of the United States were strictly segregated. African Americans could not use the same schools and other public places that white people used. They could not go to swimming pools, could not eat in restaurants, and had to sit at the back in buses. They were second class citizens.
   Then a movement, put into motion by Martin Luther King Jr. and his followers, began to bring about change. In 1955 Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus, and the Montgomery Bus Boycott began. By 1963 the civil rights movement had begun to unravel the Jim Crow laws, and on Wednesday August 28 of that year thousands of people gathered on the Mall in Washington, D.C. for the March on Washington.
   What would it have been like to be a part of this historic event? What would it have been like to organize it? In this remarkable book of poetry we meet some people who went to the march, who worked hard to make it a success. Some of people we encounter are fictional, while others were really present on that day.
   One of the first people we meet is Myrtle Hill, a school teacher, who experiences fear when stones are thrown at the bus she is travelling in from Baltimore, Maryland, to Washington, D.C. A window is broken and passengers scream. People dive for the floor of the bus, and then one of the women starts to sing. Soon more voices join hers and thus the people throw songs at the people who threw rocks.
   Soon after, we meet Annie Ross, a nineteen year old college student from Georgia who went to Washington. Sixteen year old Dan Cantrell is also from Georgia, and he goes to the march even though his father tells him not to. Raymond Jarvis also comes from the south. He is from Texas and has suffered at the hands of white supremacists.  Ruby May Hollingsworth is only six years old, but she and her family travel all the way from Arkansas. Ruby does not really understand what is going on, but when she is allowed to drink from the same water fountain as a white girl she begins to realize that something important is happening around her.
   Emma Wallace travels all the way from a farm in Iowa. She wants to be a part of history, to see what is happening in her country for herself.  She is encouraged by her father to see the “national powwow” and perhaps witness the event that will “shame the past / and shape the future.” Renee Newsome, who lives in Washington D.C also has a father who encourages her to be a part of the march, and she goes to the Mall with him and her grandmother.
   The stories of these six characters are told in a series of poems, and we are able to see what being on the march meant to them all, how it changed their lives in meaningful ways. We also hear the voices of other people, people like the singer Lena Horne, Coretta Scott King and Charlie Jackson, who was a policeman.
   The voices that speak to us from the pages of this book bring the March on Washington to life, helping us to experience this extraordinary time in a personal and powerful way. We come to understand why this event meant so much to so many, and we give thanks that its impact is still being felt today.   


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16. Poetry Friday -- Surprises



AUDUBON METRO PARK

The sun -- a low-hanging smudge.
The pond -- a layer of ice over mud.

A movement under the ice -- a darker oval.
A late afternoon surprise -- a winter turtle.


©Mary Lee Hahn, 2015



Last Friday, we had the surprise of discovering a new metro part that's right inside the city, just south of downtown -- Scioto Audubon Metro Park. We were also surprised by this turtle sighting. I'm sure s/he is buried deep in the mud this week!

Friday kind of snuck up and surprised me this week, too. It's been an odd first week back, with school every other day M, W, F. Hard to get routines reestablished (in the classroom OR in my personal life)! Having four day weeks next week (PD day) and the next (MLKing Day) won't help either. Oh, well. Gotta do the best with what you've got, right?

Tabatha has the Poetry Friday roundup at The Opposite of Indifference today.


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17. biannual britpoet feature

My spouse hails from Manchester, England ("England, across the Atlantic Sea, and I'm a genius genius") and all her parents are language and literature specialists.  It's become a tradition for me to receive from them gifts of poets less well known on these shores, and this Yuletide I received Paper Aeroplane by Simon Armitage. 

The back cover of this Selected Poems 1989-2014 says he's "the first poet of serious artistic intent since Philip Larkin to have achieved popularity," and yet I'm guessing that once again few of us know his work, since mysteriously so little seems to cross the pond. I knew him only as a novelist, and finding out that he's published a ton of poetry collections makes me feel a little ignorant. Here's Simon at the Poetry Foundation, and here's a poem from his new book. 

A Glory | Simon Armitage

Right here you made an angel of yourself,
free-fallng backwards into last night's snow,
indenting a straight, neat, cruicified shape,
then flapping your arms, one stroke, a great bird,
to leave the impression of wings.  It worked.
Then you found your feet, sprang clear of the print
and the angel remained:  fixed, countersunk,
open wide, hosting the whole the sky.

Losing sleep because of it, I backtrack
to the place, out of earshot of the streets,
above the fetch and reach of the town.
The scene of the crime.  Five-eights of the moon.
On ground where snow has given up the ghost
it lies on its own, spread-eagled, embossed,
commending itself, star of its own cause.
Priceless thing--the facelesss hood of the head,
grass poking out through the scored spine, the wings
on the turn, becoming feathered, clipped.

Cattle would trample roughshod over it,
hikers might come with pebbles for the eyes,
a choice of fruit for the nose and the lips;
somebody's boy might try it on for size,
might lie down in its shroud, might suit, might fit.  Angel,
from under the shade and shelter of trees
I keep watch, wait for the dawn to take you
raise you, imperceptibly, by degrees.


Now, no kidding--I hadn't spent much time with Simon yet--so I just opened my new 232-page volume randomly and found this poem.  But, with snow on the ground here and this poem in my own Pumpkin Butterfly, why would I look any further?
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Frozen Angels | Heidi Mordhorst

We line up and hold hands
knees locked,      
then let go
Falling blindly, keen to feel
the crunch as we break the
perfect snow

Arms drag and legs plow
high and open
shut and low
Doing slowly jumping jacks
flat on our backs in
heavy snow

We sit up and bend knees
balance out
on booted toes
Stepping deeply, keen to see
the shapes we made in
crumpled snow

There they are: our angels frozen
on their backs
in a row
Where the cheerful field should lie
an angel graveyard
in the snow.


Enjoy the Poetry Friday Roundup today at The Opposite of Indifference with my my friend and local neighbor Tabatha.

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18. 13 Ways of Looking at Plotting ~ and Happy Poetry Friday!

.
Howdy, Campers!

Happy Poetry Friday!  A poem by Paul Bennett and the link to Tabatha's Poetry Friday post are below.

In TeachingAuthors' opening round for 2015, we are each asking ourselves, "What Are We 'Plotting' for 2015?"

Mary Ann started us out, sharing how she does or does not plot."Planning and plotting are not the same thing," she writes. "Plotting is knowing what happens first, then next, then next and at the end. I never know more than one of those things before I start writing.  I've stopped worrying about it."

Thank you, Mary Ann. I haven't a clue how to plot.  When I sit down to write, I'm never sure if I'm starting a poem, a song, a verse novel or a picture book.  I might be inspired by a color or a phrase from the news. Of course I knew not everyone plots their stories methodically, but it's great relief to be reminded of this!

A group photo of the TeachingAuthors.
from morguefile.com
We are each snowflakes in the way we approach writing and life; and beyond this, I think that we are different from moment to moment, year to year, in crisis and celebration.

For example, until recently, I would say I'm fairly disciplined.  I've been writing a poem every day since April 1, 2010 (1,743 poems), I brawl with L.A. traffic every two weeks to meet with my marvelous critique group, I write in amiable silence with three or four other writers weekly, and I have a goal or two tucked away in my writer's smock--a couple of picture books, a novel in verse, a collection of poetry, a Pulitzer Prize.

But when my mother began to fade, particularly this last year, it was all I could do to hold onto my writer's smock.  Why? Partly because of the increased responsibility, and partly because of the foggy lethargy which set in.
Yeah...kinda like this.
from morguefile.com
There is so much to do, now that Mom has died.  So, I've stopped attending my critique group, stopped writing books, stopped meeting with other authors at my friend's sunny kitchen table.

I still write a poem a day, though.

So, What am I Plotting in 2015?  Nothing.

Well, writing a poem a day.  But beyond that?  I haven't a clue.

I'm reading Loving Grief by Paul Bennett, a book in brief chapters, each of which ends in a poem, written after the death of his wife.  In the chapter, Coming to a Stop, he writes that the three times over a period of months his legs would no longer carry him forward.  He stopped. On a street, in an airport, on a hiking trail.  Later, he wrote, "those incidents of coming to a stop, those moments of stillness, struck me as early invitations from deep within myself to start new."

Here is the poem which ends that chapter:

Well. I was going to post the poem, until I read the copyright page (oops) which states that I cannot post it without permission.  So I won't.

What I will do is to post my own poem about stopping in my life.  Please note that each person experiences a death uniquely. I don't feel as if I'm in deep grief right now. Still:

STOPPING BY THE WOODS
by April Halprin Wayland

No snow.
No woods.

But I pause.
To hear the hawk.
To breathe my breath.
To hold this stone.

Alone.

poem (c) 2015 April Halprin Wayland.  All rights reserved.

I think I'm listening for the music to cue my next step.

I'll be ready.


(So...the title of this blog?  You were expecting a parody of
Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird?)

posted with affection by April Halprin Wayland

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19. Poetry Friday: Where it Hurts by Caitlyn Siehl

There is too much wrong with the weather
these days and I can't look you
in the eyes without thinking
about how long it's taken for
the snow to melt...

- Where It Hurts by Caitlyn Siehl - Click here to read the poem in its entirety!

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20. Ringing in the New Year with Poetry Friday

I'm pleased to host the first Poetry Friday round-up of the new year, but even more excited to share some work the Poetry Seven have been working on.

Last year for my birthday in late August I suggested that writing poems together would be an amazing gift. Kelly Fineman picked up on that, Liz Garton Scanlon made some suggestions, and we were off writing triolets on the topic of beginnings and endings. Our goal was to share with each other some time in October. During that time my life was in a bit of an upheaval and I was dealing with the approaching death of a beloved colleague. The poems that came out of that time were all dark and depressing. I lost my friend and mentor just 43 days after he was diagnosed with cancer. He'd probably be mortified that I was writing about him, but the poems helped me get through those days. Here are the first and current drafts of my triolet.

First Draft (untitled) 
I dreamt of you last night
Knowing nothing ever stays
Past wrongs not yet made right
I dreamt of you last night
Saw you loosed and taking flight
Slipping towards the end of days
I dreamt of you last night
Knowing nothing ever stays
37th Draft ... or something ridiculous like that. After all, "A poem is never finished; it is only abandoned." (A paraphrase of Paul Valéry by W. H. Auden)
Letting Go 
I dream of you each night
knowing nothing ever stays
glimpse that smile despite your plight
I dream of you each night
watch you loosed and taking flight
slipping towards the end of days 
I dream of you each night
knowing nothing ever stays 
Poem ©Tricia Stohr-Hunt, 2015. All rights reserved.

You can read the poems written by my Poetry Seven compatriots at the links below.
Tanita Davis
Kelly Fineman
Sara Lewis Holmes
Laura Purdie Salas
Liz Garton Scanlon
Andi Jazmon Sibley


I am happy to be free of 2014 and ready to embrace 2015 and all it will bring. I hope you'll help me ring in the new year by celebrating all the amazing poetry folks are sharing this week. I'm and old-school style host, so please leave a note with a link to your offering in the comments. Happy new year and happy poetry Friday all!

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21. Antidote: A Triolet for the New Year



The antidote to fear is honeyed in devotion
delivered deep, a draught of slow and barmy mead.
Else we dry to salt, fleeing night-depths of the ocean;
The antidote to fear is honeyed in devotion 

Why pillory our hearts, why gulp the unguent potion?
Why frack our veins to stir up courage quickly dead?
The antidote to fear is honey-slow devotion;
Yes, poetry, delivered deep, a draught of barmy mead.


This poem would not have been possible without the encouragement of the rest of the Poetry Seven:  Liz, Andi, Kelly, Laura, Tricia, and TanitaEach of these poets has a triolet posted today, so go and drink deeply.  

For more about triolets, see here.   For more about the Poetry Seven, read about our first gig together on this April day in 2008.

Poetry Friday is hosted today by one of the Poetry Seven, the amazing Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect 

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22. Poetry Friday with a review of Ode to a commode: Concrete poems

I can still remember the first concrete poem that I read. It was Mouse's Tail, by Lewis Carroll, which appears in his book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. I thought the poem was very clever and showed it to my father. Nowadays lots of poets are trying out this clever poetry form and it is interesting to see what they are creating. 

Ode to a commode: Concrete poemsOde to a commode: Concrete poems

Brian P. Cleary
Illustrated by Andy Rowland
Poetry
For ages 6 to 8
Millbrook, 2015, 978-1-4677-4412-6
Most of the time poems are written so that words are in horizontal lines that go across the page from left to right. We are used to this format and comfortable with it, but some people like to write poems that are a little different. They write concrete poems, which are poems that look like the thing (or things) that the poem is about. The letters of the poem “are arranged on the page to form a picture” of that thing. Thus a poem about a pair of scissors might be arranged on the page so that the words in the poem form the picture of a pair of scissors. Concrete poems are fun to create and they don’t have to rhyme, so they are a wonderful poetic form for novice poets to try.
   The first poem we encounter in the book is Ode to a commode,and the words on the page are arranged in a spiral so that they look like water swirling in a toilet after it has been flushed. It is hard not to laugh as we follow the words round and round until “the bowl fills back up in a minute.”
   Next there is No Wonder he is so Quiet and we see a poem that looks like a pair of glasses. We can tell at once that the writer has a just got new glasses. He or she is thrilled to be able to see everything so clearly, and now the writer knows why his or her friend is so quiet. It turns out that the friend “was really a tall potted plant.”
   A little further into the book we encounter a poem called A twisted Tale and we can see straight away what the poem is about because the words are arranged on the page so that they look like a pretzel. We read how some pretzels are soft, “chewy and warm” while others are “hard and you crunch.” The great thing is that no matter what texture they are, pretzels are “always delicious with lunch.”
   Wonderful touches of humor, amusing artwork, and a delicious moments of word play make this book of poetry a must for young readers who appreciate poetry in all its forms.


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23. Poetry Friday -- Expectantly




EXPECTANTLY

Next to the lamp, an
Open book and a steaming cup of
Tea.
In the chair, she sits with
Closed eyes, listening
Expectantly.

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2015


My One Little Word for 2015 is NOTICE. In this poem, I prepare myself for whatever 2015 will bring!

Tricia has the first Poetry Friday roundup of the year at The Miss Rumphius Effect.


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24. Poetry Friday: Entrance by Rainer Maria Rilke

Whoever you are: step out of doors tonight,
out of the room that lets you feel secure.
Infinity is open to your sight.
Whoever you are.
With eyes that have forgotten how to see
from viewing things already too well-known,
lift up into the dark a huge, black tree
and put it in the heavens: tall, alone.
And you have made the world and all you see.
It ripens like the words still in your mouth.
And when at last you comprehend its truth,
then close your eyes and gently set it free.

- Entrance by Rainer Maria Rilke, translated by Dana Gioia

Related posts at Bildungsroman:
Black Cat by Rainer Maria Rilke

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View the roundup schedule at A Year of Reading.

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25. Poetry Friday - Jigsaw Puzzle

Did you know that January is National Puzzle Month? In honor of this month-long celebration I'm sharing a wonderful poem by Russell Hoban. You can find it in A New Treasury of Children's Poetry, selected by Joanna Cole (p. 210).
Jigsaw Puzzle
by Russell Hoban

My beautiful picture of pirates and treasure
is spoiled, and almost I don't want to start
to put it together; I've lost all the pleasure
I used to find in it: there's one missing part.

I know there's one missing -- they lost it, the others,
the last time they played with my puzzle -- and maybe
there's more than one missing: along with the brothers
and sisters who borrow my toys there's the baby.

There's a hole in the ship or the sea that it sails on,
and I said to my father, "Well, what shall I do?
It isn't the same now that some of it's gone."
He said, "Put it together; the world's like that too."
Now that you've read it, see and hear the poem in this amazing little video by Michael Sporn Animation.

We're big puzzle fans in my house. Here's a closeup of the puzzle we completed on New Year's eve to help bring in 2015. It's a Liberty Puzzle of a Blue Whale. Liberty Puzzles are wooden puzzles in which every piece is a different shape and many of the shapes feature whimsical items. This one included a sailboat, octopus, seahorse, scuba diver, and more.

I do hope you'll take some time to check out all the wonderful poetic things being shared and collected today by Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference. Happy poetry Friday friends!

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