Thursday, January 25, 2024

Pinata Man -- January 26th

Happy Poetry Friday!

I spent a little time thinking about the Poetry Pals prompt for January. You can find it on Tanita Davis' blog, fiction, instead of lies. Thanks for the challenge, Poetry Pals! 

Linda's golden shovel 1/26/24

When we are small, we play.

Our mind celebrates

ability to make the

world over by the power

of ourselves, by the power of

our innocent imagination.


reality is the

least worry of a child.

It’s our work in

life to keep all--

all we can of

that once-upon-a-time truth of us.

Even though world snuck into the golden shovel above, there is a weekly poem for World on the World padlet too.

Make sure you head over to Susan at Chicken Spaghetti for all the poems she's rounding up this week.

Thursday, January 18, 2024

After Viewing Angel on Earth by Edith Breckwoldt

Hello Poets!

And, hello Friday snow day! Thank you, Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge for hosting our round-up this weekend.

This week, I have a poem in response to a beautiful memorial I visited in Germany over Christmas break.

Saint Nikolai church was destroyed by Allied Operation Gamorrah during World War II. After the war, city planners of Hamburg found restoration of the church, whose congregation had already relocated,  prohibitively expensive and time-consuming in this very busy city. 

Since the blackened outer walls, floor, crypt, and spire remained, the ruins were turned into a memorial sculpture garden.  Read more of the history here.

While visiting the memorial grounds, I was taken with this sculpture. She's beautiful...and the plaque at her base is beautiful too. 

Angel on Earth is my inspiration today.

"Angel on Earth" Take my hand and let me lead you back to yourself. Edith Breckwoldt 2003.

We are three weeks into 2024 and I already have a New Year's postcard from Jone's exchange that I adore. I sent mine out this week. Poem #3 is on World's padlet.

Overlooking Hamburg from the spire of St. Nikolai December '23

Thursday, January 11, 2024

January 12, 2024

Happy Poetry Friday! Thank you, Tangles & Tails for hosting our round-up this week.

January can be a tough time of the school year. We arrive at our work in the dark and often leave as it's darkening or already dark. The string of first-semester holidays is behind us. There is serious work to do, serious tests to take, and grindstones to put our noses to.

Gray winter day

Many students are doing great. Some are struggling. This is not unusual. 

This past week I had what I thought was a fun activity for students. One student, in particular, was struggling such that they could not even find a way to put their name on their paper.

At first, I was frustrated. I was kind of taking the behavior personally. I called in a colleague who knows the student well and asked that they chat with the student--hoping it would spark some energy. The chat backfired.


School can be tough. It can feel too hard given the simultaneous internal work of growing up.

Per my usual, this student stuck with me in my thoughts. What could I have done better? What can I do better next time we meet?

This was the frame of mind I was in when I drafted the poem below. I am not in a low place personally. And, I don't want any reader to worry that there is a serious crisis brewing for me or even for the student.

I simply worked out some feelings through poetry. 


I went out into the world
not finding a single reason

to laugh

keep still

learn something new

or even try.

My mind and even my body
feel defeated

before I can begin.

I’m not happy or sad,

not angry, not confused--

just lost in such a way

that I don’t remember

how to care in any big or small way.
This is all to explain my apathy.

Linda M.
draft 1/12/24

World poem #2 is on World's padlet. We are on our way--wheeeee!

Thursday, January 4, 2024

Happy New Year!

Hello Poets and Happy 2024!

I am hitting the ground running after a glorious winter break trip to Hamburg, Germany. Even though the weather was dark and drizzly, I loved all of the Christmas markets, art museums, neighborhood walks, and dinners with friends. Thank you, Marcie Atkins, for hosting this week's round-up.

WORLD is my one little word for 2024. I introduced WORLD here. A padlet has been started for WORLD here.

Our creative and smart poemster friend Heidi set the January challenge for the Inklings. Come along and play with us.

First, we received this beautifully hand-made countdown calendar. Each day celebrates Yuletide with a prompt for thinking and writing. I love this so much!

Heidi's gift

I don't have a poem for every prompt...but I have some. Each prompt worked well with my time away to slow down and look--taking in sights, sounds, and, feelings more than my day-to-day speaking, teaching...and even complaining. Writing to these prompts was good for my soul.

Returning Sun

When our faces are hidden by winter clouds

we wear scarves, hats, and mittens

We look for you in the dark sky

We call out Sun, return to us!

Sun, return to

Sun, return


Linda Mitchell 1/5/24


Seating with room to spare-
including a spot for you
on this crowded bus of the WORLD.

A smile for you and all
your friends – and theirs too.

Generosity has spare change
to help anyone out in a pinch.

Generosity makes sure no one
is left out or behind.

Generosity has an abundance of heart, 

space, things to share.

All of this and more is generosity.

Linda Mitchell 1/5/24


Where cats
sleep in my favorite chair

Home is where brewing coffee
scents the air

Home is where my laptop
sits on our kitchen table

Home is where I am able

to look out to pine trees

waving seasons in
and sweeping seasons out.

Home is where I sleep best

best when everyone I love
is there.

Home is singing washing dishes after a close game of cribbage

Home is

reading before bed and a kiss goodnight.

Linda Mitchell 1/5/24

For more responses to Yuletide prompts visit:

In 2024 my olw is WORLD

Happy New Year 2024!

I hope everyone enjoyed a happy and safe Christmas, Yuletide, Hannukah, and Kwanzaa holidays. 

Thank you, Margaret, at Reflections on the Teche for starting off our year of SLJ posts. 

I've been excitedly waiting to share my one little word for 2024 with you all. I tentatively chose WORLD in November and it's hard to say if coincidence or confirmation bias that led to me choosing it for this next year. What do you think? 

My Journey to WORLD

  • Like so many, I'm sad about the state of affairs in so many parts of our WORLD. I've been journaling my thoughts and in November seriously considered making WORLD my olw '24

  • At work, I've been using 11x17 inch paper for student activities...the size of that paper inspired me to use some WORLD clip art and copy 30 (11x17) pages at a local Kinkos to make journals with. I made the first journal for myself using the oversized paper and pages from old atlases. I'm very satisfied with this journal size and theme

  • In December I stumbled across this quotation from Maggie Smith's poem, Written Deer. WORLD seemed to be speaking louder to me


  • Over Christmas Break, my husband and I traveled to Hamburg Germany for some time as tourists and time with German friends. After choosing a coffee cup from a selection on a tray, our friend explained to me that the iconic gate of Hamburg is known as, the gate to the WORLD.

  • I was also drawn to these books in our friend's very impressive library. By now hook, line, and sinker WORLD had caught me. What could I do but give in to a year of WORLD focus, reflection, and writing?

So what do you think? Confirmation bias? Coincidence? Devine suggestion? No matter which path led me to WORLD, we are happily making friends and dreaming big dreams together for this next year. 

I have made a padlet for a WORD poem for each week of 2024.