Friday, September 18, 2020

Poems Can Help Us Make Decisions

 

Monday Two
Photo by Amy LV



Students - This week, one of our class fish, Monday, died. We got a new Monday, but we still remember our old Monday.

Today's poem is a little bit of a goodbye, a little bit of a love poem, and a little bit of a heart-opening-decision. I was sad about Monday's death, but writing about it helped me want to love Monday Two too.

If ever you are wrestling with something inside of yourself, try writing. It might help.

Our Tank with Old Monday
Photo by Amy LV

Matt is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Radio, Rhythm, and Rhyme with the roundup and a giveaway of a new Lee Bennett Hopkins anthology, NIGHT WISHES. All are welcome each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day 

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Occasion Poems: Back to School

 

Mr. Chomper the Pencil Sharpener
Photo by Amy LV




Students - This week I went back to school again, having been out of the classroom and working as an author and writing teacher for the past 22 years. A former fifth grade teacher, now I am a happy fourth grade teacher!

Students and teachers alike have been nervous about returning, and yet, the wonderfulness of children made everything good. I am thankful for my students and new colleagues.

 

Sometimes life offers a change or an occasion such as back to school time. Maybe you get a new pet or move from your old house. One person learns to ride a tricycle and another graduates from trike to bike. Changes are occasions...and we can write poems for them. What changes or occasions are you seeing in your life and in the lives of those you care about these days? Consider a poem as a gift…for your future self or for someone you love.


Kiesha is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Whispers from the Ridge with the roundup and some poems by one of her favorite poets, Paul Laurence Dunbar. All are welcome each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day 

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Poems Can Help Us Say Goodbye

 
1944 - 2020
Loved by So Many




Dear Students and Friends - I have not been in this space for a couple of weeks because my loving father, George Ludwig, died on August 21, 2020. Instead of tending this space, I have been missing my dad very much and also taking care of his house and business.

Too, I have taken a position as a fourth grade teacher, and I could not be happier about this. It has been a sad time and a time of new beginnings, and I am grateful that my dad knew about my job. He was so happy for and proud of me, and I cannot wait to meet my students this week. It has been 22 years since I was a classroom teacher, and at this time of loss, I am happy to have a beautiful new beginning too. Thank you to everyone at Parkdale Elementary and everyone in the East Aurora Union Free School District for welcoming me so warmly.

Each person experiences ups and downs on life's rollercoaster, and I am grateful to have spent so much of my own life-ride with my father. Some of you may know the feeling of almost not believing that someone is gone, and at such a time, reading and writing poems can help us hold our feelings up to the light. Even when the world feels scary, words are here for us. Words and poems can help us grieve, can help us say goodbye.

I wrote this poem in the second person, choosing to write in the you voice instead of the I voice, even though this poem is actually about me and my own dad. It just felt right this way. Remember, when you write your own poems, you may choose the point of view. It need not always be your own.

Carol is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Beyond LiteracyLink with the roundup and her Embracable Summer Gallery of poems and images.We invite everybody to join in each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day 

Friday, August 14, 2020

Do You Have a Secret?


Snow Body
by Amy LV



Students - I am reading (finishing, sigh!) a wonderful, magical book right now titled THE MURMUR OF BEES by Sofia Segovia. This novel takes place during the time of the Spanish Flu, and I am especially intrigued by the character of Simonopio who has a mystical relationship with bees. Perhaps this is why today's poem involves a bit of enchantment. I awoke this morning and simply took some quiet time to think. And at once, I could almost feel my body fill with snow. I could see this, this thing that is not true yet feels true.

If I really DID have a body filled with snow, no one would be able to see it. This would be a secret, and while it is not true, it feels like a true secret today. What might be a true possible secret for you? Go ahead and just sit still and think. Imagine. Allow the magic in. And if you wish, write about your secret. You need not show your writing to anyone, but of course you may if you wish.

And remember, what we put into our hearts and minds comes out in one way or another, so it is important to consider what we allow our brains and hearts to eat. I think I will be reading more magical realism.

Speaking of magic and connections, I feel so fortunate to have participated in one of Tabatha's poetry swaps this summer. Tabatha, of The Opposite of Indifference, often gets such good fun going, and last week, my mailbox and I were tickled to receive this beautiful notebook made by Jone of DeoWriter

Poem and Notebook by Jone
Photo by Amy LV

Her lovely poem reads:

bristly rose pollen
a bee gathers nature's gold
for future poems

I adore how Jone refers to pollen as nature's gold and adore imagining the future poems of honey. Does Jone know we have bees and hope to harvest honey for the first time this year? Does she know that I have planted these exact roses out front of our home? Does she know that I am reading THE MURMUR OF BEES? Magic. Magic and gratitude. Thank you to Jone and to Tabatha for bringing such a perfect poem present to me.

Molly is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Nix the Comfort Zone with the roundup and a monotetra poem bidding farewell to her area code 207 in Maine. We invite everybody to join in each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day 

Friday, July 31, 2020

Give Free Verse Advice







Students - Have you ever watered a plant? When I water plants, I almost think I can hear them whisper, "Thank you." Sometimes it really is the smallest, simplest act that brings a person joy. Here's something to try: pay attention to every small part of a day. Which bring you clear happiness? Keep a list of these things. Maybe one day you will wish to write long about one of them.

Today's poem does not rhyme and does not have a special rhythm. But the lines are short, and they are short so that a reader slows down while reading. I have decided to call this a free verse advice poem.

Here is one of my freshly watered plants. It says, "Hi!"

Happy Plant
Photo by Amy LV

Catherine is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Reading to the Core with a magical book recommendation and the magical poem one of its paintings inspired her to write. We invite everybody to join in each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day 

Friday, July 24, 2020

Poems About Endings



Clara and Her Kittens on May 1
Photo by Amy LV

Henry and Clary Sage on July 21
Photo by Amy LV




Students - On Sunday, the last two kittens our family is fostering will be off to their new homes. Throughout this spring and summer of Covid-19, we have had the pleasure of caring for a mother cat named Clara (her new family named her Molly) and Clara's five kittens: Nutmeg (now Opal), Pepper, Clary Sage, Rosemary, and Ginger (soon to be Gertrude Stein). Caring for these kittens and watching them grow has given our family so much joy. Now it is natural and right for them to have bigger lives in homes of their own, but still...it is sad to split them up and to say goodbye.

Poems stand by us in times of emotion: happiness, fear, grief. Wherever you are right now, there is a poem to match. Have you ever written a poem about letting something go? If you wish to try this, you might start by making a list of losses you have experienced and then choosing one to write from. Oftentimes our joys and sorrows hold hands and together, these feelings and experiences make us who we are. In your poem, see if you can hold two emotions at once.

Did you notice that I repeated the words they were ours? This poem is very short, but those words are important, important enough for me to write twice. Repetition is a way to slowly sew meaning into a reader's heart. When you write, reread your work to see if there are words or lines important enough to repeat.

Margaret is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Reflections on the Teche with a generous share and the question: What is Poetry? We invite everybody to join in each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day 

Friday, July 17, 2020

Just Make Something - A List Poem



Dough
Photo by Amy LV

Dough with Homemade Strawberry Jam
Photo by Amy LV

Baked Scones
Photo by Amy LV

Cut Scones
Photo by Amy LV




Students - This morning my husband had a colleague over for a meeting, and so I decided to make jammy scones! These are a favorite of our daughter Georgia, and it was fun to make them again. Whenever I'm not sure what to do, I make something...and then all is well.

Here is the recipe for today's scones if you wish to make them yourself.

An Old Favorite Cookbook
Photo by Amy LV

Yum! Try it Out!
Photo by Amy LV

Jan is hosting this week's Poetry Friday party over at Bookseedstudio with a lovely poem in honor of her swimming mom. We invite everybody to join in each Friday as we share poems, poem books, poetry ideas, and friendship. Check out my left sidebar to learn where to find this poetry goodness each week of the year.

Please share a comment below if you wish.day