Wednesday, April 25, 2018

NPM 2018: It's Poem in Your Pocket Day Eve!

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Tomorrow is one of my favorite days of the year. When I was teaching, it was a performance day in my classroom. Everyone shared a poem from his or her pocket! 

Now that I'm retired, it's become a lunchtime event at the middle school where I used to teach. We display poetry books and our book club members pass out poems they have rolled up and tied with ribbons. I don my "apron of many pockets" and take advantage of students standing in line for lunch - the perfect captive audience for poem sharing. And "Pocket Poem" by John Grandits from Blue Lipstick will definitely be in one of my pockets (along with at least twelve other favorite poems). 


"Yes, it's a good idea to carry a poem in your pocket.
It's a little snack for your soul."

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

SOL & NPM 2018: Book Decisions!





Today I join my fellow bloggers in "serving up a slice"
to the Tuesday Slice of Life (SOL) community.
Thanks to Stacey, Betsy, BethKathleen,
Deb, Melanie, Lanny, and Kelsey
 for hosting this meeting place each Tuesday
and nurturing our writing lives.




I have a four hour flight home today. I've been visiting my brother in Oklahoma (where I grew up). And it's decision time!
Here are the books I've chosen to put in my bag today.
(And yes, that means there are a few others in my checked bag.)

1. I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes with Death 
by Maggie O'Farrell is my number one read for today. I hadn't heard of this book, but when I picked it up from our library's Lucky Day Collection (2 week checkout, no renewals, 2 items per library card) and saw that it was a memoir, I knew it was a must read for me. I read most of it on the way here and only have 70 pages left. Knowing that it's in my bag makes me eager to arrive at the airport
and have some wait time.

2. Dear Fahrenheit 451: Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks:  
A Librarian's Love Letters and Breakup Notes 
to the Books in Her Life by Annie Spence is number 2 on my list. It was due yesterday, so I must finish it today so it can be returned tomorrow. This is one I'll read with my writer's notebook and sticky notes at the ready. My favorite letter so far? Dear Frog and Toad Storybook Treasury. There's so much to love in this letter that I simply have to copy pages 42 and 43 for my favorite quotes file.

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Don't you think it's appropriate that I have two poetry books
in my bag for National Poetry Month?

3. Voices in the Air: Poems for Listeners by Naomi Shihab Nye is one I want to finish before I attend Saturday's Arbuthnot Honor Lecture at Western Washington University when I get to hear from Naomi Shihab Nye in person. And don't you agree that the title, 
Voices in the Air, is perfect for flying?

4. Poems Are Teachers: How Studying Poetry Strengthens
Writing in All Genres by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater is the professional book that I planned to read for National Poetry Month. It's on my #mustreadin2018 list. But so far, I've failed miserably. Maybe because there's been so much poetry to read and love in the blogosphere this month. It's in my bag, so maybe I'll spend some time
with it while I'm airborne today.

I love reading time with no distractions so I'm definitely
looking forward to today's four hour flight!

Monday, April 23, 2018

NPM 2018: Poetry Mosaic from Bookology

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

I discovered The Poetry Mosaic under the Features tab on the Bookology site. During each day in April, you can click on the day to hear a poem read by the poet who wrote it. Today's poem is "Sack Lunch" read by Charles Waters. Each daily icon includes a picture of the poet, the book the poem comes from, and a link to the poet's site. This resource will remain on Bookology throughout the year. Bookmark the page to listen to thirty remarkable children's poets reading their own poems. 

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Celebrate this Week & NPM 2018!

Join us each weekend for Celebrate This Week with Ruth Ayres.

When we pause to celebrate, we find the joy.
Discover. Play. Build. 

   A week filled with moments to celebrate and remember.

Each week I join Ruth Ayres and a few friends
to celebrate the week and to focus
on the positive things that happened in the past week.

Jack at Island Books story hour
with Nancy Stewart (and Grandpa)
 Our first grandparents' meeting at the library, 
led by Nancy Stewart of Sing With Our Kids -
"We are the keepers of traditions, songs,
language, stories, and indulgence."
Karen's birthday celebration on Vashon Island -
check out the huge tulips!
Grandson Teddy and son Blake at the library

Oklahoma trip
Nothing beats spending time with family. My brother lives here and this is my first visit in almost two years. I love that my nephew James brought his two kids, Leah and Asher, for a quick visit.  After church we enjoyed a delicious Sunday dinner of roast, gravy, carrots, potatoes, and rolls. Thanks, Kathy! Lucky me -
I still have two more days to spend with family!
James with Leah and Asher 
Aunt Kara reads a bedtime story
to Asher and Leah.

Check out "Earth Day" by Jane Yolen
in honor of Earth Day.

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Saturday, April 21, 2018

NPM 2018: What poetry do you pack in a bag almost full?

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

My bags were almost full for my trip to Oklahoma when I remembered that I wanted to take some poetry to share with my niece's fourth grade students. I squeezed in my Poem In My Pocket apron and looked at my shelf. So many books to choose from and so little room . . . So I decided to bring two books perfect for sharing with fourth grade.
Falling Down The Page:  A Book of List Poems
edited by Georgia Heard
all the small poems and fourteen more
by Valerie Worth with pictures by Natalie Babbitt

Friday, April 20, 2018

NPM 2018 & Poetry Friday: Poetry Found!

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

It's another busy morning, but somehow I find it easy to become distracted by my inbox. First, there's Tara's Poetry Friday post, with a new-to-me poem "Two Set Out on Their Journey" by Galway Kinnell. Then I open the weekly newsletter from Fresh Bookology where I click on this article about Pomelo Books and our poetic friends Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. One of my favorite features of the Fresh Bookology newsletter is this section 
which leads me to Kirby Larson's blog where I end up scanning posts and discover "This Sacred Thread" in a comment to her blog post, Another Slim Christmas.


This Sacred Thread
By Heather K Janules


They once dwelled among us, the people of memory.
They who knew us, they who taught us,
They who hurt us, they who loved us.
They touch our lives time and again,
through their presence and their absence.
Through familiar scents and favorite songs,
Through old stories and renewed sorrow.
As the earth turns and leaves fall,
We reach back to renew the bonds between us.
With hearts and hands open
We hold onto to love,
Ever-stronger than death.
We reach back in gratitude and understanding –
Without our time together,
The pain and the joy,
We would never be who we are today;
We would have little to pass on ourselves.
Without fear, with thanksgiving
and with hope for all that awaits,
We remember those who have gone before,
We honor the circle of life and death,
And our place within this sacred thread.


Isn't it lovely to find poetry in one's inbox? Here's to a delightful Poetry Friday! 
 has this week's round-up of poetic goodness. 
She's celebrating the release of 
Imperfect:  poems about mistakes:
an anthology for middle schoolers.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

NPM 2018: Celebrating Poetry!

National Poetry Month 2018
"Give praise with friends near and far,
flinging words to the sky!"
- Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

It's one of my favorite months of the year and somehow it always ends up being one of the busiest too! Here's a resource that I just found today on a blog post from our library site about poetry. How I missed it seeing it before I don't know, but it's incredible, it's astounding, it's so filled with love for poetry! (last updated, March 2016) I know, you're just like me, never enough time, but this one is worth a look. Stop now and bookmark it for future reference.