Thursday, April 18, 2024

This poetry book came home with me

 Hello Poets,

How was Poem in-Your-Pocket Day?  I admit I was so busy with library review-game stations for a couple of different grade levels these past few weeks that I grabbed a free poem-in-your-pocket for kids activity here. And, it was just fine.

A benefit of working in a school library with an amazing co-librarian and assistant is that I'm always seeing books displayed that I didn't know existed. Or, seeing books that I've heard about but haven't had a chance to check out yet.

This book was displayed this week and it was literally love at first site. I just couldn't keep from snatching it up and taking it home.

Watson, Renee. “Maya’s Song.” RenĂ©e Watson, www.reneewatson.net/copy-of-maya-s-song. Accessed 18 Apr. 2024.


Admittedly, I've been a bit obsessed with biographies in verse lately. I have a project in mind. But, it feels like an overwhelming task at the moment. But, this book...makes it seem possible. How does Watson do this?

Maya's Song was written by one of my favorite authors, Renee Watson, illlustrated by the great Bryan Collier, and published by Harper Collins in 2022. It is a stunning biography and tribute to our national treasure, Maya Angelou.

27 free-verse poems detail the beautiful and sometimes painful arc of Ms. Angelou's life from her beginnings until she was a Free Bird.

https://booksofwonder.com/products/9780062871589 


We learn about how Maya got her name, important family members, friends, and distinguished acquaintances who reached out for her words and her voice.

Watson, Renée, and Bryan Collier. Maya’s Song. Harper Collins, 2022.



Even though Harper Collins recommends this book for grades 2-5 I think that students to adults will also love it. The teacher resource provided for this book is OK. I would have added many more opportunities to write and draw for readers to demonstrate understanding of and connection to the book and its subject.

I had another topic in mind for Poetry Friday this week. But, when this book smiled at me I was smitten. I simply cannot stop paging through it to admire the artwork and re-read the poems. Ms. Watson simply nailed-it as a biographer for young readers with this book. 

Do yourself a favor. Go to your nearest library and let your eyes sweep across the displays for poetry month. Enjoy how the book covers call your attention, flirt with you even. Even if you already have a giant stack of books for Poetry Month...what's one more? Maya's Song would make an outstanding addition to your reading this month.

Thank you, Heidi, for hosting our round-up this week at My Juicy Little Universe.

There is a new poem, How to Save the World from Drowning, on the padlet. It originated with #verselove from Ethical ELA, a writing resource and space for educators. I've enjoyed the prompts this month. I'm grateful for the community of writers there.

Thursday, April 11, 2024

Progressive Poem Rest Stop -- Exit 12


Hello Poets,


Aren't you just loving Poetry Month? I'm enjoying everyone's poetry projects. Rose C. at Imagine the Possibilities inspired me with her call-and-response idea. My weekly WORLD poem plays along.

Today is my turn to share a couplet in our community's progressive poem. This poem started out with two lines by Patricia Franz at Reverie and continues each day of April with couplets from other poets until here. 

I imagine this poem as a journey with visits to various blogs and websites. It's been a lovely journey so far. I'll try to make your visit pleasant before you continue on the interwebs to Denise at Dare to Care for day 13.

cradled in stars, our planet sleeps
clinging to tender dreams of peace
sister moon watches from afar
singing lunar lullabies of hope.

almost dawn, I walk with others,
keeping close, my little brother.
hand in hand, we carry courage
escaping closer to the border.

My feet are lightning;
My heart is thunder.
Our pace draws us closer
to a new land of wonder.

I bristle against rough brush —
poppies ahead brighten the browns.
Morning light won’t stay away —
Hearts jump at every sound.

I hum my own little song
like ripples in a stream
Humming Mami’s lullaby
reminds me I have her letter

My fingers linger on well-worn creases,
shielding an address, a name, a promise–
Sister Moon will find always us 
surrounding us with beams of kindness



Take it away, Denise!

Read the list below to learn where our poem has been and where it’s headed. 

April 1 Patricia Franz at Reverie
April 2 Jone MacCulloch
April 3 Janice Scully at Salt City Verse
April 4 Leigh Anne Eck at A Day in the Life
April 5 Irene at Live Your Poem
April 6 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
April 7 Marcie Atkins
April 8 Ruth at There is No Such Thing as a God Forsaken Town
April 9 Karen Eastlund
April 10 Linda Baie at Teacher Dance
April 11 Buffy Silverman
April 12 Linda Mitchell
April 13 Denise Krebs at Dare to Care
April 14 Carol Varsalona at Beyond Literacy Link
April 15 Rose Cappelli at Imagine the Possibilities
April 16 Sarah Grace Tuttle
April 17 Heidi Mordhorst at my juicy little universe
April 18 Tabatha at Opposite of Indifference
April 19 Catherine Flynn at Reading to the Core
April 20 Tricia Stohr-Hunt at The Miss Rumphius Effect
April 21 Janet, hosted here at Reflections on the Teche
April 22 Mary Lee Hahn at A(nother) Year of Reading
April 23 Tanita Davis at (fiction, instead of lies)
April 24 Molly Hogan at Nix the Comfort Zone
April 25 Joanne Emery at Word Dancer
April 26 Karin Fisher-Golton at Still in Awe
April 27
April 28 Dave at Leap of Dave
April 29 Robyn Hood Black at Life on the Deckle Edge
April 30 Michelle Kogan at More Art for All


Thursday, April 4, 2024

haiku sequence about poetry without mentioning poetry by name

Hello Sweet April Poets,

I am back from a wonderful spring break full of family time. My batteries are charged!

Mary Lee challenged the Inklings to write a haiku sequence about poetry without mentioning poetry by name. It's been fun writing in a negative space of ars poetica.

Thank you Irene for hosting our round-up this week at Live Your Poem. I love your website's origin story. 


haiku series


winter lights lower
trees open programs – snap
a reading begins


awkward, oafish clouds

fumble loud through rumble lines
to scattered applause

rain recitation

repetitions of sorrow
green pushing through mud


sun rises, rhyming
with yesterday yet warmer
a red-wing blackbird


bluebells of the woods
bring listeners to their feet
bravo! little ones


Redbud knows a thing
or two of intermission
wind breakers zipping 


pollen drunk bees
bring down the house with ballads
summer ends this show



Not one but TWO world poems on the padlet this week...gotta keep up with the weeks!


See other Inkling responses to the poetry that shall not be named prompt:


Margaret at Reflections on the Teche Catherine at Reading to the Core Molly at Nix the Comfort Zone Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe Mary Lee at A(noth)er Year of Reading








Friday, March 22, 2024

Wheeeeee! Spring Break & Bless Our Pets

Hello Spring Break!

You're finally here. Let's go out into the beautiful world and enjoy some time together.

One thing I plan on doing while on break is reading Bless Our Pets. Poems of Gratitude for our animal friends (Eerdmans Books for Young Readers. 2024), one of the last books edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins before his passing.

A first perusal highlights Poetry Friday friends. I especially enjoy Sarah Grace Tuttle's, Hoping Hampster.

Lita Judge's spring-toned creamy watercolors bring to mind times when I was a young girl snuggled up and reading with my mother. Bless Our Pets has a look,and feel perfect for anyone's Easter basket, Passover host/hostess gift or Eid-al-Fitr reading. And, if you are part of a congregation that holds pet blessings, as mine does, it belongs in the hands of the celebrants. 

I am grateful to Eerdmans Press for reaching out and asking if I'd like a copy to review. This book feels like a hug from all the pets of my past that I have loved.

As I leave school today and pack up for visits with family, Bless Our Pets is going with me. I know just the right little people to bless with this book. 



Thank you, Rose at the Imagine the Possibilities for hosting our round-up this week. 

There's new poem on the padlet today sparked by Jama's Tuesday post. 

Thursday, March 14, 2024

March Mash-up

Hello Poets,

There's one week before my spring break. Hooray!

I was fresh out of ideas for Poetry Friday. So, this mash-up feels like a bit of a cheat. But, I recommend creating mash-ups (formerly known as cento), though, for times when one's gray matter isn't quite up to the task of creating fabulous original thought.

Here's how to mash up: Find very different poems. I like nursery rhymes and classic poems. Then, mash them up together any way that strikes your fancy. Don't forget to give credit to the original authors. 

Here's an example of a mash-up between Frost's Nothing Gold Can Stay and a version of I See the Moon as sung by Meredith Wilson:

March Mash-up


Nature’s first green is gold,

   I see the moon and the moon sees me,
Her hardest hue to hold.

  Shining through the branches of the old oak tree.

Her early leaf’s a flower;

   Oh, let the light that shines on me,

Then leaf subsides to leaf.

  Shine on the ones I love.
So Eden sank to grief,
  Over the mountains, over the sea,

So dawn goes down to day.
  Back where my heart is longing to be. Nothing gold can stay.

  Oh, let the light that shines on me,
Shine on the ones I love.


There's a new poem on World's padlet. https://padlet.com/mitchellhubeimom/2024-world-ivf6ca0h9vp0flmq/wish/2918722436


Thank you, Tanita Davis, for hosting this week's round-up!

Thursday, March 7, 2024

Gathering & Women's History Inspiration

Friends,

This post is a two-fer...and no one is more surprised than me.

Ramona is hosting Spiritual Journey today Laura Purdie Salas is hosting Poetry Friday. This post is for both. 

When Ramona shared her OLW, Gathering, as a prompt. I smiled. I love this word. It's welcoming and warm. I didn't think I had anything to write about...but then...I did.

This weekend, I'll gather with school librarians at a regional conference in my area. We'll swap ideas and talk over issues that we deal with on a day-to-day basis. I gain so much camaraderie and fellowship from these gatherings. 

My most local group that is part of the larger region is hosting a craft boutique at the conference. We will accept donations toward a scholarship in memory of our late friend, Beth. Beth was an outstanding school librarian who inspired us regularly before she passed away several years ago. I miss her spunk and laugh every time we, her librarian friends, gather. 



During the pandemic lockdown I found myself weeding...cleaning out closets, weeding my school library, spending time organizing. Simultaneously I gathered old and pretty paper from discarded books to make crafts.



I've had lots of fits and crafting starts...and hours watching YouTube. But, being in my craft area, gathering supplies to make something for someone else fills my soul with joy. I find the activity of making soothing, healing even. I hope someone picks up a pretty paper and takes it home.



It's Women's History Month! I love finding stories of women who made our world a better place but may not be well known to us.

'Fog Bank' by Emmi Whitehorsehaiku by Linda M.


Emmi Whitehorse is an artist whose work is featured in the National Gallery of Art's Artist Spotlight, 10 Contemporary Women Artists to Know. I thought her work, Fog Bank, fit this haiku.

The World Poem Padlet has gained a new entry. Gosh, I love to see poems pile up!

Thank you, Laura Purdie Salas for hosting the round-up this week. I'll get around to reading and commenting on posts after the conference.




Thursday, February 29, 2024

What the Letter Said

Hello March Poets,

Our Inkling challenge comes from Margaret this month:

Persona Poem: A persona poem has a specific audience, conveys a message, is written in the voice of another person, place, or thing, and uses direct address.  Sample poem, “Mother to Son” by Langston Hughes.

I dug into my photos from my recent trip to Germany for inspiration. 




The portrait's description of the artist, date, and details from a quick Google search gave me some rich material to work with.



What the Letter Says

You hold me light

these words penned by Ernestine

      My dear Angelika

Greatest gift of your parents,
this sister.

      You are now 15 years old.
      I have

Long now living a different life, another world.

      copied this for you from
      Klopstock:
As if time or distance
would grow between you.

      Beautiful is, Mother
      Nature’s splendor of your invention

As if her lifeforce doesn’t
flutter in lines of ink

      scattered in the corridors; more
      beautiful happy face

Her embrace falling,
fell from my pages         that thinks the great thought

      of your creation again!
into your gaze,
and tender embrace.
  Your sister, Ernestine
  Hamburg 1822


Linda Mitchell 3/1/24


Inkling responses to the prompt:

Margaret Catherine

Molly

Heidi

Mary Lee



Week 9 World Poem is on the padlet


Thank you Linda Baie at Teacher Dance for hosting our weekly round-up. Your heart-felt post about turmoil in the world and choice is a lovely leap day post.

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Epistolary Poem

Hello Poets,

I'm sorry that I'm not sorry to see February leave...maybe it's a good topic for a poem? What do you think?


Dear February,


Before March arrives,
I’m saying goodbye.

This isn’t a surprise.
We both know
our relationship--
has run its course.
Though we romanced
through those
raw January weeks,

I’ve seen you
looking more
and more at Snowdrops
popping up around the mailbox.

My heart-shaped candy box
is empty.
There's no more champagne.
We had a great run.
Valentine’s Day,
Lunar New Year.

Mardi Gras
Red and gold sparkles
                                for days.

Let’s not part
with bitterness.
We’re adults.
Maybe next year
we’ll catch up
over drinks.
Take care,
I wish you all the best.


Linda


There's a new WORLD poem up on the padlet. Thanks so much to Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference for hosting our round-up this weekend.


Friedman, Leo, and Pearley B Shelton. The Broken Heart. [Chicago: North American Music Company, 1919] Notated Music. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/2013563438/>.


Thursday, February 15, 2024

Mardi Gras Dragon

Hello Poets,

I just loved this photo from Margaret Simon's post, 'The Photo Wants to be a Poem' on Wednesday.

photo. Margaret Simon 

I wrote a draft...but then, I didn't like it. Whenever that happens, I treat the first draft like it's an exercise. 

I try to re-write the poem in a few different forms to see if anything fresh surfaces for me.

        dragon heat sweep sweeps
        with this late-night revelry
        toss mardi gras beads 

                              Linda Mitchell


My go-to exercises always include haiku and triolet. I've recently added Kwansaba and Elfchen. These short forms give me constraints but a short commitment to the page. They help me revise.


Electric

sequined wings

pink and green

Fire-breathing bead queen

Dragon

Linda Mitchell



What revision strategies do you recommend?

This dragon made an appearance on World's padlet too.

Guess who's hosting our weekly round-up? It's Margaret at Reflections on the Teche. Thanks, friend.