Thursday, June 21, 2018

Poetry Friday 6/22

It's Poetry Friday. Isn't that great? This week's round-up is hosted by painter-poet, Michelle at Moreart4all. She has a review of a new book I am in love with, Bayou Song, by our Poetry Friday friend, Margaret Simon. I cannot wait until everyone sees this gorgeous book!

This week was one of those weeks, you know?

It's summer--I'm having fun with some paper crafting and at the ice-cream place with my kids. I've stayed up late watching stupid TV and been reading books. 

But, I've also gotten caught up in the news cycle and too much social media. I found myself stressing out over a work in progress...and it's only the beginning of my assigned time to recharge my inner batteries. Hoo Boy!

It's time to breathe and find some balance. We creatives can take on more emotion than the average bear sometimes.

So, I gave myself a joy assignment.

*Remember the last time you felt joy?

*Do something that brings you joy

*Find joy

This poem brings me joy


are birds
that arrive
with books
and spring

the wind
and trees
page from my paper-craft journal
can you guess what my first written word was?

some words
are messengers
that come
from far away
from distant lands

for them
there are
no borders
only stars
moon and sun

some words
are familiar
like canaries
others are exotic
like the quetzal bird

some can stand
the cold
others migrate
with the sun
to the south

some words
they're difficult
to translate

and others
build nests
have chicks
warm them
feed them

teach them
how to fly
and one day
they go away
in flocks

the letters
on this page
are the prints
they leave
by the sea

Francisco X. Alarcon, "Words are Birds" from Laughing Tomatoes and Other Spring Poems. Copyright © 1997 by Francisco X. Alarcon.  Reprinted by permission of Lee & Low Books.
Source: Laughing Tomatoes and Other Spring Poems (Lee & Low Books, 1997)

PS: I didn't know that 6/23 is National Pink Day....but Sandra Boyton did and it makes me giggle.


  1. Thanks for this deliciously, delightful, and joyful poem Linda! I enJoyed it and your Joy–filled intro to it. I want to read more from this enchanting book, "Laughing Tomatoes and Other Spring Poems."

  2. This "Words are Birds" is transcendent. I feel the lift. Appreciations for introducing me to it & to LAUGHING TOMATOES AND OTHER SPRING POEMS. Wishing you more summer times of late nite foolery, much paper crafting & eventual ambling to your words of The Other writing. I know it will happen, you are so talented, Linda. (is the 1st word on this craft page champagne? wish it were the "sea shell." Just sayin'.

    1. not that champagne isn't cool, cute & crisp down the gullet ... :)

    2. nope....not champagne....but I do like that word very much. Thanks for your enthusiasm. It's so nice hearing from you.

  3. Oh, I know that book "Laughing Tomatoes" & the poem is such a marvelous one for summer beginnings, Linda. I know how you feel, lots of mixed-up crazy news that's awful, plus trying to do some other word, whew! We do need some joy! My guess for first word: "puppy ears"! Ha! Love all your post!

  4. I love the vivid comparisons. What a wonderful way to bring an abstract word to life. Thanks for sharing this poem.

  5. A perfect choice for this week! Thank you!

  6. Love this poem. Thank you for sharing it and also reminding us to find joy :)

  7. This poem, this week.

    Such a beautiful poem! First word... flaming?

  8. PINK. Love this whole post and good for you for recognizing that you need to focus on the joy! Your "papercraft" journal is a good idea...I'm getting closer to putting my hands on 20 years of worn-out pajamas and getting back to *uilting!

    Thanks so much for pointing me to this FXA poem--I've been planning for years to make his season books a focal point of our poetry studies in 2nd grade, and this one is one that I have missed somehow. Have a great weekend!

    1. YES! The word is PINK! You are such a smart cookie! I have a poem brewing now that I'm working on about creative cross-training...stay tuned.

  9. I love this poem about words and birds. Also love that you are getting some creative joy time. Thanks for sharing and thanks for your support of Bayou Song.

  10. Thank you, thank you for your invitation to find joy! I love the poem about words as birds--such a playful metaphor so joyfully expressed. Like you, I have gotten too sucked into the news and social media this week--in ways that have not been productive or helpful. But I picked up a new book to read at the library--THE BOOK OF JOY by the Dalia Lama and Bishop Desmond Tutu. I started it this morning, just in time for your post!

  11. Love Alarcon's poem and the entire book :). Thanks for the uplifting and joyous post, Linda!

  12. Balance and joy -- may you find both, Linda!

  13. What a gorgeous poem. Thank you for sharing it, Linda. I'm going to save it for my writing notebook. What brought me joy today was watching Carpool Karaoke with Sir Paul McCartney -- it warmed my heart right up!

    1. Oh, my too! I didn't watch all of it though...been fighting off a summer cold. I think I will go finish that right now.

  14. I, too, love this invitation to joy, and needed it today for all the same reasons! And Laura -- I also took some joy today from that Carpool Karaoke! :)

  15. This poem is one of my favorites! And who knew there was such a thing as National Pink Day? Thank you for sharing your joy!

  16. Thank you for the reminder to look for joy. I need to do more of that! I love Francisco X. Alarcón, and have used his books for years, but I had forgotten about this poem. It would go well with Peter Reynolds' new book.

  17. Linda, I am circling back after my long trip to VA. Your paper crafting hobby sounds very relaxing and satisfying. Bubblegum pink-all worked well together.


Friendly, positive comments and feedback are always welcome here. Please let me know I'm not just whistling in the dark!