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Archive for the ‘Poetry Friday’ Category

Poetry Friday posts are with Irene at Live Your Poem

Last week, my friend, poet, blogger, writing partner Linda Mitchell posted her found haiku along with the inspirational poem Letter in October by Ted Kooser.  See her post here.  I took it all to create a lesson for my students.  After study of and talk about Ted Kooser’s poem, I shared Linda’s haiku and talked about how these haiku could stand separate from the original poem.  I challenged my students to try finding haiku.

Madison created this lovely poem, but first she gave the form a name “re-ku” as in recycled haiku.

A late light dawning
finding a world of darkness.
Silhouettes of the

lost leaves, soaring
on a draft. They have lost
their way. I watch the

darkness, sipping tea.
The night has wrapped the light, sowing
reflections ‘cross
my window. Watch.

Madison, 4th grade

Free image

I’m fascinated by the rhythm and repetition that Noah used to create his artistic expression of A Letter in December.

The icy water
a letter in December
Sowing reflections

The icy writing
a letter in December
in the window pane

The icy fingers
a letter in December
wrapped around the hearth

The icy shingles
a letter in December
frozen in its place.

–Noah, 6th grade

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Poetry Friday posts with Violet who is celebrating Canada’s Thanksgiving.

 

There are only a few signs that October is here.  The temperatures are still quite warm, but on my morning walks, the sun does not peek over the horizon until I am close to home.  The bald cypress trees in our backyard are turning brown.  And the grass is growing slower, so my mower (dear husband) can spread out the weeks between mows.

In the classroom, when the calendar changes, attention turns to the end of the month.  You know the day, Halloween!

I have subscribed to the Academy of American Poets newsletter “Teach this Poem.”  The lessons are just right for my gifted students. From this site, I introduced Robert Frost’s poem October this week.   We discussed the poem, the rhyme scheme, imagery, and new vocabulary.  We talked about odes and how an ode is like a praise poem to something ordinary.  Then we wrote our own poems, stealing words and ideas from Robert Frost.

I tried a golden shovel with my favorite line, “Enchant the land with amethyst. Slow! Slow!”

O, autumn, your winds Enchant
birds into song, the
sugarcane drapes the land
in swaying soldiers with
suits of green-gold amethyst
Step, step Slow!
Swish, swish, Slow!
Marching to harvest all.

–Margaret Simon, after Robert Frost “October”

Lani, a 6th grader, took a line from Robert Frost and built her own poem around it.

How do you know when fall is here?
When the leaves from towering branches
that loom over us fall into colorful
browngreen leaf piles to plunge into until
twilight makes its unveiling.

When you don’t have to set your
alarm-instead being woken by
The crows above the forests call.

When football starts and your bedtime
changes to fit the Monday, Tuesday,
Thursday, and Sunday games.

When you can wear a sweater
outside and cold fronts become
more persistent.

When the flu sets in and
the doctor is occupied.

When fuzzy socks come out of
the dark hole called
your sock drawer.

When summer clothes
go to Goodwill.

When you stuff your face
on Thanksgiving.

When the days are shorter and
the sunsets more memorable.

When you grieve when it’s over.

Lani, 6th grade

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Poetry Friday posts with Laura Purdie Salas at Writing the World for Kids

 

While summer seems far away as I end my eighth week in school, my poetry swap gifts continue to come.  Jone and Iphigene both contacted me by email to say their poetry gifts were late.  I was late, too, so I didn’t mind.  In fact, I love receiving a surprise in the mail…anytime.  Iphigene’s gift included this beautiful painting of the bayou.  She lives in the Philippines, so she had to use images from my blog to imagine this scene.  She definitely captured the peacefulness.

Bayou Teche by Iphigene Daradar. Acrylic on paper.

This is what Iphigene said in her note to me about composing the poem:

“When I was conceptualizing the poem, I thought I’d write about the Teche, but as I read your recent blog posts, the idea of impossible, possible, and overcoming kept surfacing.  In the end, I wrote a poem with those words in mind. The tone of the poem, too, is not my usual.  It was influenced by the biopic of Emily Dickinson called A Quiet Passion.”

The Extent of Our Souls

By Iphigene (For Margaret)

There is an extent by which our soul stretches
One that is measured by words
Short phrases echoed through
In the silence of our minds

In the loose utterance of
‘stupid’ and ‘can’t’
Mingled in laughter, our skin
Think as nothing

Our souls call as truth
Like a seed planted
In perfect day, bears root
Bears bloom, each day

And so, our soul, fits itself
In the limits of our bodies
Brittle for the measure—
Impossible.

However,
As those who know words
Who play with the scales of phrases
Our measures change with space
And rightly placed punctuation

I’m possible.
Feel the impossible stretch
And the soul re-tells its truth
Stretching to ‘greatness’
And knowing it can.

Bearing roots that bloom
Perennial in the hearts
Of those who try to stretch
Their souls to possibility
and its truth.

This week I was blessed by a gift from Jone MacCulloch.  She takes beautiful photographs.  She sent an amazing close-up of a dahlia and her poem printed on a plaque that stands.  In addition to the photo-plaque, she sent a copy of her book  Solace in Nature which is a collection of her photos and poems.

photo and poem by Jone MacCulloch

 

Here is a photo and poem from her book, Solace in Nature.

winged fighter pilots
dive bomb daily
over sweet nectar
by Jone MacCulloch

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Poetry Friday posts are over at The Poem Farm with Amy.

Thursday, Sept. 21st was International Peace Day.  I don’t think I would have known this without the intentional movement by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater.  Her efforts to promote Peace Day resulted in this padlet of wonderful resources.

I wish I could’ve taught Peace Day all week, but I reserved it for Thursday.  My students explored peace poems, made peace heart maps, and wrote poems of their own.  We had a wonderful celebration of peace.

Peace Heart Map by Jacob

Peace and Harmony
by Jacob

I am a seed
spreading across the world
filling the world
with peace and harmony.
Leaves shaped of hearts
making everyone
feel happiness.  

Peace Heart Map by Madison

On the Wings of a Butterfly
By Madison

Peace to come
on the wings
of a butterfly.

Peace to come
to silent wars
with melodies of peace.

Peace to come
in the purr
of a cat.

Peace to come
in your heart.
Let it spread.

Over at Today’s Little Ditty, Carole Boston Weatherford created a challenge to write an abecedarian poem.  I wrote one for peace and added it to Michelle’s padlet here.

Abecedarian Peace Poem

A peaceful world can
Be–
Caring will make it so.

Dance with
Each other
Face to face; Don’t
Give in to
Hate

Inch by inch we
Join our
Kindred hearts with
Love
Made
Noticeable
Only when
Peace is our
Quest

Resist a hateful
Stance
Tap-tap
Unified
Variations
With
X-steps–
Your own
Zydeco two-step of Peace!

–Margaret Simon, 2017, all rights reserved.

 

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Poetry Friday posts are with Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty.

 

dots

One of my favorite days of the school year is Dot Day.  My students love it, too.  Today we will be making creative dots in class.  I’ll post them next week.

In preparation for our Friday celebration, I shared Laura Purdie Salas’s Dot poem.

 

Laura Purdie Salas

As a class, we brainstormed a list of things that were dots.  I asked my students to write a rhyming couplet with one or two of the ideas we listed.

Writing a rhyming couplet seems easy, at first.  I quickly discovered that rhyming doesn’t go together with making sense in kids’ writing.  We had lots of a lots rhyming with dots.  We even had cots and bots.  We also had internal rhyme rather than end rhyme, slant rhyme, and some just plain nonsense.

One student said, “This is hard.”

I responded, “Yes, but isn’t it fun when it works?”

We persevered and created a poem everyone was happy with. I am sharing two poems from each of my ELA groups.

 

A Pixel on the Page

A pixel on the page is just the start
for what may become a famous work of art.

Everything is made up of matter,
even the mad hatter.

Dots are everywhere
as well as over there.

A dot is the sun. A dot is the moon
disappearing around noon.

The earth is a dot
in not just one spot.

Want to make a rhyme,
running out of time?
Who you gonna call?
The majestic, dotty, narwhal.

One dot, two dots,
three dots, four,
five dots, six dots,
seven dots,
let’s add some more.

A dot is a dot
and there are quite a lot.

All you need is a spot
to make a dot.

I’m a dot, you’re a dot, everything’s a dot.
A dot can be super hot
spilled on the floor
dots,
        dots,
                 dots
                           galore.

 

 

Dot to Dot

Put an egg in a pot to boil
water bubbles, bump and coil.

My fingerprint marks a dot
leaving my dirt in a swirling spot.

A period on the end of a line
On a piece of paper ready to sign.

Potatoes, tomatoes, grapes on the vine
A salad combined for us to dine.

A seed that will grow into a tree
pollinated by a tiny little bee.

A dot…
a dot is a lens on the tip of your eye
looking for clouds high in the sky.

A dot is spot we can see
like that chocolate chip in my cookie.

 

 

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Poetry Friday posts are with Matt at Radio, Rhythm, and Rhyme.

 

There are times when a poem passes your way, like a butterfly on the rose bush or the tree frog on the window glass.  It comes and hovers a minute with the sole purpose of reminding you that God is real and present.

I felt this lighting when I opened Jane Kenyon’s A Hundred White Daffodils and found “Let Evening Come.”  With all the natural disasters in our midst, we need this reminder.

Let Evening Come

Let the light of late afternoon
shine through chinks in the barn, moving
up the bales as the sun moves down.
Let the cricket take up chafing
as a woman takes up her needles
and her yarn. Let evening come.
Let dew collect on the hoe abandoned
in long grass. Let the stars appear
and the moon disclose her silver horn.
Let the fox go back to its sandy den.
Let the wind die down. Let the shed
go black inside. Let evening come.
To the bottle in the ditch, to the scoop
in the oats, to air in the lung
let evening come.
Let it come, as it will, and don’t
be afraid. God does not leave us
comfortless, so let evening come.
Jane Kenyon, “Let Evening Come” from Collected Poems. Copyright © 2005 by the Estate of Jane Kenyon. Reprinted with the permission of Graywolf Press, St. Paul, Minnesota, www.graywolfpress.org.
Duperier bridge sunset

Bayou Sunset: Let evening come…

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Poetry Friday posts are with Kathryn Apel all the way from Australia.

 

Most of my week was spent inside my house watching the weather channel and wondering what Hurricane Harvey had in mind.  He was a destructive force in South Texas.  But here in Acadiana, we got some rain, some wind, and three days off of school.  I am happy we didn’t have to endure the suffering of flooding and wind damage, but there’s a part of me that feels guilty about that.

I’m in charge of this month’s #10foundwords article for Laura Shovan’s Facebook poetry project.  I chose an article that Tabatha Yeatts posted about how we can help Houston: Ways to Help People During Hurricane Harvey.

The ten words I found are: storm, contribute, massive, functioning, need, home, shelter, giving, dramatic, midst.

While the storm was heading north to dissipate, a few bands of wind gusts passed our way.  I love the way the cypress trees bend and wave with the wind.  They are designed to withstand hurricanes and tropical storms.  I went outside to video the trees. When the wind passes through the trees, it sounds like waves on the seaside.

I realized that the video could enhance my poem, so I worked on an iMovie.  If I had been teaching, I never would have had time for this kind of creative play.  The grace of this storm was time to create. The grace of poetry is words to express my deepest empathy.

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