Thursday, March 14, 2019

Listening to Poems About Climate

Poetry Friday, you've arrived. Thank you. It's been a long are welcome respite.

Harris & Ewing, photographer. Joseph Burton Kincer, Principal Meteorologist, Chief of Division of climate and crop weather. [or 1939] Photograph. Retrieved
from the Library of Congress

Heidi, at My Juicy Little Universe has invited us to address today's school strikes around the world in protest of climate change. There is much to learn about today's events...starting with Greta Thunberg of Sweden ( @GretaThunberg ).

I'm watching with interest. Truth be told, I'm scared to death of actually being IN a protest. I have opinions to be sure. But, the act of getting out in the mix of a protest crowd is not anything I've done. These young people are teaching. I am learning. 

I looked for the perfect poem to share for today. I'm not sure there is ONE perfect poem. However, I stumbled upon twenty astoundingly beautiful poems here:

The best part? Each poem is read by a British actor....all one needs is a set of earbuds. The text of each poem is provided so you can read along if you wish. And, you can download the poems to a device. 

by, Michael by Jeremy Irons

Wind-wounded, lopsided now
Our mighty beech has lost an arm.
Sammy the demolition man
(Who flattened the poet’s house
In Ashley Avenue, its roof
Crashing into that homestead,
Then all the floors, poetry
And conversation collapsing)
Slices the sawdusty tons,
Wooden manhole-covers,
An imagined underground.
Beneath a leafy canopy
The poet, on my seventieth,
Gazed up through cathedral
Branches at constellations.
Where is he now? Together
We are counting tree-rings.


  1. I'm in awe and have the utmost admiration for Greta Thunberg. What an inspiration. I look forward to listening to some of the poems from this collection. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Thanks for the poem and the links to more. So much to admire about these young people taking initiative. I've done only one march and it was pretty tame, but I'm with you when it comes to large crowds of angry people.

  3. I was in the second women's march. It was fine, Linda. But different places mean different experiences, I know. I'll try to listen to these poems over the weekend. Wow, must be a good, but sad, collection, considering the one you shared. Greta Thunberg has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. I hope that will help, too! Thank you!

  4. O you have found a treasure to share with us, Linda! Appreciations for this, which I expect to delve into. So good to know that Carol Ann Duffy (whose poetry for children I have long appreciated, ever since being led to her by Scotland/British professor Morag Styles at Hollins) organized this, with such powerhouse evocative reading talents. We are all encouraged by the students in this, I know.

  5. Thanks for the great resource!! I love Jeremy Irons's voice. :) Actually, I could listen to anyone's British accent all day long. And I hear you about protests, crowds of people, etc.

  6. "Cathedral branches" -- such a perfect way to convey the reverence.
    Crowds can be intimidating, to be sure. When I have gone to marches, though, the people in them tend to be really wonderful, so that's a plus.

  7. Linda, this is such a terrific find! I'll explore over the weekend. The protest/strike at the Capitol as very tame indeed and yet I was glad we went. I like the way the tree and the poet and the house collapse together in this storm...

  8. I found this collection, too, and will return to it. I love these lines:
    "Gazed up through cathedral
    Branches at constellations."
    I once listened to a series of lectures about debt by Margaret Atwood. Her main thesis was that we all owe a debt to the earth and have to hurry up and take better care of our only home.

  9. What a treasure! I have saved the link and will explore all the poems and voices next week during our Spring (Gift of Time) Break! THANK YOU! I am becoming so much more of a listener, too!

  10. I also found this treasure trove of poetry and listened to many of the poems, Linda. I am writing a follow-up blog post with Rachel Boast's poem, Silent Sea. Stay tuned for more on climate change thoughts.

  11. Ah, crowds. Not my favorite either, Linda, which is why I never liked going out to see the fireworks in Boston on the Fourth of July. But still, there are marches, and there are MARCHES. The ones I've been to that aren't *too* huge have been exhilarating. Thank you for the link to the climate change collection. I definitely will be returning to listen to more!


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