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I spent some time with grandsons this weekend. We had Leo, 11 months, Saturday through Sunday afternoon. Taking care of him is a physical endeavor. He’s at least 20 pounds of activity. I love talking to him and watching his responses. His facial expressions are funny–the O-face, his inquisitive eyebrows, and his endearing smile. Yet, as they say, he is a handful. And rightly so, learning how to move is serious and dangerous business. You always have to be on guard. I saved his life a few times over the weekend.

Cousins Thomas and Leo

Thomas at 2 months is less active and a light 11 lbs. 9 oz. of soft and cuddly. He has started responding with coos and smiles. But I don’t worry as much about his safety. He’s usually being calmly held, or he stays in one place on a floor mat.

As I was looking at my students today, I tried to imagine them as babies and toddlers. I said to them, “It’s hard for me to imagine that at one time if I had put you down in this room, you would’ve pulled all the books off the shelf, stuck your fingers in the socket, or tried to climb on the desks.” They all started talking at once with their stories of what dangerous things they had done as toddlers.

“Look! I still have a scar on my elbow!”

“I jammed my fingers in the door.”

I told them I think we need to save this as a writing prompt. They called me out on “peanut butter” which is what we call things that are off topic.

I admit I’m as bad as any of them at getting off the topic. But I got a good writing prompt out of it.

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Sunset 1

I have been participating in the Teachers Write virtual writing camp at Kate Messner’s blog. The first few weeks I was very good about doing all the exercises. One of the early quick writes asked us to think about a special place. The details of the prompt can be found here.

I visited my parents this summer and enjoyed daily views of their lake. Usually a bird was in the view. The sunset is always beautiful and different. So this became my special place for my response poem.

The Lake
Sometimes near the lake
cardinals flirt,
flickers of red
darting, clicking.
You’ll hear honks of Canada geese,
a gaggle on the shore pecking grass.
There is the great white egret
sailing above the water
reflecting a shimmer of sparkling sun-kiss.
Sometimes, the tinkle of the wind chime
whispers softly, “I love you.”
–Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

Kate’s model poem was her own Sometimes on a Mountain in April. Hers is a poem in photos, very nice. Hop on over there now.

Thanks, Matt Forrest, for taking on the Poetry Friday Roundup today. Go on over to find more rich poetry links. poetry friday button

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