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Posts Tagged ‘#verselove’

Poetry Friday round-up is with Jone.

There’s a loss of energy in grief, a sadness that is heavy and weighs you down. I’m not at all sure that writing helps, but writing for me is the most personal act and wherever I am, my writing is there, too.

Over at Ethical ELA, Shaun Ingalls posted a prompt inspired by Alicia Mountain’s “Drift” inviting us to re-encounter something with a new perspective.

I Hold an Acorn

in my hand
in a field of clover.

Am I a child now?
Walking with sun
bright in my eyes as it rises
above the live oaks?

It is spring, to be sure,
a time of resurrection.
Yet you are
not here.

I cannot call
you or text (You never learned how to text),
so I stand in the field,
hold
the acorn
lift it to smell my childhood, like the scent
of the Paschal candle, anointing
to save,
to savor.

I am here.
You are
not.

Margaret Simon, draft
Grandmother oak in the morning. Photo by Margaret Simon

The Kidlit Progressive Poem is nearly complete. You can follow its progress with the schedule on the side bar. Karen has the next to last line today.

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If you are here for the first time, this post is a weekly photo poetry prompt originated by Laura Purdie Salas as Fifteen Words or Less. This is a place to play with words and interact with other poets. On Ethical ELA this week there were two different Verse Love prompts in which the writer took inspiration from another writer, a word or a line traveled from poet to poet.

Let’s play with this idea of poems communicating with each other. I will start us off. The first person here can take a word or line from me. As always, you may choose to go your own way. That’s fine, too.

Today’s photo is from my friend, first grade teacher Lory Landry. When she isn’t teaching, she is taking photographs. I loved the intimate perspective of this one.

Dandelion by Lory Landry

Mary Lee Hahn is writing a poem each day about the climate crisis. I loved her poem about dandelions.

Wake up, dandelion!
Starbursts ready to fly.
Blow, spring wind, blow!

Margaret Simon, draft

The Progressive Poem is with Linda Mitchell today. Molly had a conflict, so Linda stepped up to add the next line. Thanks, Linda!

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What a full weekend! The Books along the Teche Literary Festival was held in New Iberia. On Saturday, my friend, artist Paul Schexnayder and I led a children’s workshop. He taught the art part and I led the poem part: Poem Portraits. The kids wrote a bio-poem and decorated a cardboard face with Picasso-esque facial designs.

Student portrait

Outside in Blue Dog Park, there was a children’s authors area, but I decided not to sit and sell books this year. I had a good time supporting my SCBWI friends, hanging out at their tables, chatting and selling their books.

It certainly helped that the weather was probably the best we’ve had all year.

Blue Dog Park was the location of the Children’s Author Tents

For Ethical ELA, Gae Polisner and Lori Landau led the prompt with a suggestion to choose a line from another writer’s poem and create your own poem. They called it Collaboration Inspiration and it was probably the most prolific day for writing so far. Pop over to read the amazing poetic responses and to be inspired yourself. I borrowed my first line from Stacy: “Yesterday I wore only a sweater.”

Yesterday I wore only a sweater
Cream-colored comfort
in the morning chill.
I left it on a folding chair
in the children’s authors’ tent
where we joyfully greeted
a couple from Ohio
who loved children
and storybooks
and the craft of illustration.

A book festival can be an inadequate space,
sitting for hours
no sales in sight
pondering imposter syndrome.

Yet on this April day
I dropped my sweater,
tossed my discomfort to sunshine
and a circle of writers
who fed my soul
and warmed my shoulders–
no sweater needed.

Margaret Simon, draft

Progressive Poem is with Mary Lee today.

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I have been following #verselove on Ethical ELA. On Tuesday, teacher-poet Gayle Sands posted a selection of photographs to use for prompts for ekphrasis, poetry about art. I love how looking at art or photography can lead you to a poem, and many times to something unexpected.

Linda Mitchell and I are writing partners in a Sunday night critique group. After I wrote my poem to an image of Alice Paul, I found her poem, a golden shovel about the same photo. I asked Linda’s permission to post her poem along with mine. I think it shows how poets can take a different perspective.

The photo reminded me of my great grandmother who died just shy of her 100th birthday. While mine was more descriptive of the photo, Linda included historical information about Alice Paul and the Sewall-Belmont House.

I always feel the movement is a sort of mosaic.

   ~Alice Paul  to Woodrow Wilson May 2019

The gentlemen from Illinois and Texas, I
am certain, have lost their minds. Women have always
made way for men. It’s 1968. We feel
strength in Sewall-Belmont House since 1929. The
National Women’s Party movement
headquarters is a landmark, it is
not simply ground to lay gravel for a
new Senate driveway on Capitol Hill. What sort
of message does that send to the daughters of
our work? It would destroy the heart of our mosaic

© Linda Mitchell

4/7/20 #verselove

“There will never be a new world order until women are a part of it.”
Alice Paul (1885-1977)

 Alice Paul at Belmont House, 1972.

Alice Paul

Small but fierce
they’d say
about this woman
who wouldn’t be dared.
Hands on hips, head held
high as a carved marble statue
on a pedestal.

Like my great grandmother,
Alice Paul stood in white eyelet
eyes set straight, focused
on the photographer’s lens
like a beam of light daring
him to say,
“Smile!”

Margaret Simon, draft 2020

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