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Archive for April, 2017

NPM: F is for Fib

National Poetry Month 2017

Back in school, back to poetry.  This day we landed on the letter F.  We wrote Fib poems.  A Fib poem is based on the Fibonacci series for a syllable count of 1,1,2,3,5,8.

I read aloud Amy Krouse Rosenthal’s book “I Wish you More,” and showed my students her video “The Beckoning of Lovely.”  These ideas were swimming around in my head when I wrote with my students.  When I used the Word Swag app, the words did not line up like a fib poem, but hopefully you get the message anyway.

You can read some of my students’ Fib poems here.

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Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for the Slice of Life Challenge.

 

One thing I did on Spring Break was visit Barnes & Noble and buy a few books I’ve been hearing about.  Textbook by Amy Krouse Rosenthal was one of those books.  It took us a while to find it, me and the store clerk who was sure he knew exactly where it was.  But the book was hiding under another book.  After all that work to find it, I wasn’t going to let it go.

Then I had to take care of my car, one of those mediocre bothersome chores, except when you take Amy along.  I kept looking up and looking around because I was sure that my delight and vulnerability were showing all at once.  Somehow I felt the spirit of Amy KR right there with me.

She was not afraid to challenge us to be the best we can be.  She wanted all of us to look for purple flower moments and rainbows.  In her writing, the legacy of her generous spirit lives on, but her light is off.  I couldn’t let go of that fact.

Throughout the book, you are asked to text a response. I’m sure Amy didn’t read every text, but the idea has lost some of its appeal without her here anymore.  I wish for more…Amy.

Her style was unique and full of life.  Even her smile on the back flap continues to shine.

Page 291 reminded me that I have a doorknob that I keep on a shelf.  I bought it at an antique store when Jeff and I were planning to build a house.  We never built a house, but I still have the doorknob on a shelf.  Now I know why.

 

 

 

Kirby Larson started a Facebook group to honor Amy with good works on her birthday, April 29th.  “On April 29, 2017, the members of this group will do #More — more kindness, love, more fill-in-the-blank and will share their intentions/actions here to beckon the lovely to spring forth in others.” This is a public group, so anyone can join.

I want to be someone who
opens a door,
nurtures imagination,
keeps an umbrella close by just in case,
one who does more
because there is always
more to do.

Blessings, Margaret Simon

 

 

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No DigiLit Sunday

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

I am not posting a DigiLit Sunday post due to Easter.  Happy Easter all!

We’ll be back next Sunday.

Easter Lilies in my friend Suzanne Dugas’ yard. Photo taken from Facebook.

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Find more celebration posts at Ruth’s blog.

I’ve had a wonderful week off this week.
A little bit of sleeping,
a little bit of reading,
some writing,
some walking,
some talking with friends.

Mostly, I did whatever I wanted to do.
This is what Spring Break should be.
No excuses.
No worries.
Just a stretch of time
to relax and be.

This is not really a poem. I just made it look like one. Last night, my husband and I drove to Breaux Bridge to hear the Nouveau String Band. Oh, this group is so much fun. Lots of dancing, smiling, and laughing happened here. I’m posting a YouTube video of one of the songs they did last night. Put on your dancing shoes.

Here’s an actual poem that I wrote after reading Caroline Starr Rose’s blog post and listening to All the Wonders podcast of Nikki Grimes combined with some toe-tapping moves of my own.

I’m Possible

I’m on the edge of possible
with two steps to the right
Two to the left
Toe tap and spin.

Inside of me
I have enough
to be who I want
to be, enough rhythm,
enough swing
to make my world sing.

You do, too!

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Poetry Friday is with Doraine at Dori Reads.

I joined a Facebook poetry writing group created by Laura Shovan.  We wrote poems during the month of February to ten found words from news articles. So many of us didn’t want it to end, so Laura extended the project. Each month one member puts up a prompt of 10 found words. This month Heather Meloche posted a spring poem by Rainer Maria Rilke.

EARLY SPRING

Harshness vanished. A sudden softness
has replaced the meadows’ wintry grey.
Little rivulets of water changed
their singing accents. Tendernesses,

hesitantly, reach toward the earth
from space, and country lanes are showing
these unexpected subtle risings
that find expression in the empty trees.
–Rilke

Heather’s selected words quickly came together in a poem for me.  The practice of writing poetry is a mystery.  Sometimes I can write, scratch out, rework, search for the just right word, and still end up with nothing worthy of sharing.  But this poem wrote itself.  I love it when that happens, so I continue to scratch each day and celebrate when the small miracles appear.

The Dance

Suddenly, my hardness of heart vanished
into the meadow of his eyes. My gaze traveled
rivulets of tender tears watering the earth.
Tree rises from the soggy ground like a goddess
holding her arms out in expression of pure joy.
We danced in the softness of her embrace.

–Margaret Simon

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I hope you have been following the Progressive Poem. Today I am adding a line. This amazing interactive poetry community builder is the brilliant invention of Irene Latham.

It all started with Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe when she introduced a first person character with fidget, friction,and ragged edges. Mary Lee let the idea of F words dance back into the poem with “facing the day as my fickle, freckled self.” Then Janet set me up the steps to the stage.

I placed myself in the narrator’s shoes, climbing the stairs to the stage. What else would I feel except pure fright? So with alliteration dancing in my head, my blow dryer blew out this line. Every good story needs a conflict, right? Here you go, Jan, have fun with this fidgety, freckled, frightened storyteller. What will he/she do next? Look at the link up in my side bar to follow this poem through its journey.

I’m fidget, friction, ragged edges—
I sprout stories that frazzle-dazzle,
stories of castles, of fires that crackle,
with dragonwords that smoke and sizzle.

But edges sometimes need sandpaper,
like swords need stone and clouds need vapour.
So I shimmy out of my spurs and armour
facing the day as my fickle, freckled self.

I thread the crowd, wear freedom in my smile,
and warm to the coals of conversation.
Enticed to the stage by strands of story,
I skip up the stairs in anticipation.

Flip around, face the crowd, and freeze!

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Slice of Life: New Worlds

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for the Slice of Life Challenge.

I’m failing in my attempt to write a poem a day. It all happened when my spring break started. In truth, I’ve only been off one day, but without my schedule and my students, I feel uninspired. We crave this kind of time, a wide open day to write, and when that time happens, nothing. Blank page.

I have no choice but to give my brain this break it wants. I’ll take a walk and perhaps a muse will come. If I’ve learned anything about being a writer, it is this: writing happens in its own time.

This weekend my husband and I attended a wedding for a friend’s son. We enjoyed relaxing and not being in charge of anything. During the ceremony, the priest read a Rumi poem and talked about how this couple was crossing the threshold to a new world, a world that they would live in together.

Don’t go back to sleep

The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you.
Don’t go back to sleep.

You must ask for what you really want.
Don’t go back to sleep.

People are going back and forth across the doorsill
where the two worlds touch.

The door is round and open.
Don’t go back to sleep.

Rumi

I started thinking about how our world has changed, how change is inevitable, how change is the only constant. Within the last 6 months, two of my daughters have gotten married. Their worlds have changed. My day to day hasn’t changed, but as I look forward to the Easter holiday this weekend, I realize that our family is larger now. We have two sons as well as three daughters. In so many ways this new world is wonderful, and it will continue to grow and change.

I accept this new world.
I embrace the memories of each gathering.
And love the we
we have become.

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