Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Thrift Store Goodbye - Poem #30 for April 2014 Poetry Project

This is not a new post for Poetry Friday, but it is an invitation to visit any of the April 2014 poetry project THRIFT STORE poems you missed.  I will be taking them down soon, but for now...they are all in the sidebar.

For this week's Poetry Friday roundup, visit Katya at Write. Sketch. Repeat.

Happy Poetry Friday!  xo, a.

Learn about this, my April 2014 Poetry Project, HERE!

Thrift Store Checkout
Photo by Amy LV

Students - I was not sure how to end today's series.  I still have photographs that need poems, and I've had such fun visiting many thrift stores with poetry in mind.  I feel the way my mother describes finishing a book, "It's like losing a friend."  But April 2014, National Poetry Month, is drawing to a close today. And so the series ends.

Whenever I do not know how to end a piece of writing, I go back to the beginning.  So today's final poem brought me back to April 1, Thrift Store where I found the line, "I push the heavy thrift store door." I began today's writing with just that line, and I followed it to the verse you find above. You may also notice another snip of repetition from that April 1 poem.  Can you find it?

Thrift Store Goodbye - Draft Page Spread #1 
Photo by Amy LV

In the draft above, you can see how many attempts I made at that one line.  I may go back and work on it even more, but I did want to point out to you how often writers find ourselves writing many many lines just to find the right few words.

While I sigh for this goodbye, I am smiling too!  For I am tickled to truly end this poetry project with a poem by my new friend and mentor, Olga McLaren. Earlier this month, I was fortunate enough to work with students at St. John's School in Houston, Texas as a visiting poet sponsored by the Olga McLaren Poetry Endowment.  When Olga retired from teaching at St. John's school, she left the school with a special gift: a visit from a poet each year.  She and her husband Theron hosted a delicious dinner, and I got to see their magical gardens too.  It was a complete honor and pleasure to be this year's visiting poet, and to meet Olga, someone I truly admire.

Olga is a big thrift store shopper too, and you can read how both of us hear the objects speaking to us when we walk thrift store aisles and hold different objects.  I love the phrase "eye-shop" and the way Olga describes these items as "new friends."  I was sad to leave my new friend in Olga, and I'm a bit sad about ending this series too.  It has been a joy and a reminder of how much beauty and use we can find in the things that others leave behind.  Thank you, Olga, for bringing me to St. John's, and thank you for your poem.

Thrift Shops
by Olga McLaren

The winners of last Saturday's book giveaway are:
Please send me your snail  mail addresses to my e-mail address at amy at amylv dot com, and those books will be on their way to you next week.

Thank you to everyone who has joined me for a bit of this month's thrift store journey.  I did not know what it would be when I began, and I certainly learned a lot along the way.  From videotaping my own writing to playing with LiveWriter to sharing daily drafts and process, this was a very instructive month for me, and I look forward to looking back and thinking about what I have learned and what to do next with these poems.

I will not be posting this Friday, May 2.  Please feel free to browse through and read the thrift store poems you may have missed.  I will leave them in the sidebar for a few days after the month ends!

Now, just spend a bit of time in the gardens of Olga and her husband Theron. Amazing!

Fence in the Gardens of Olga and Theron McLaren
Photo by Amy LV

Birdhouses in the Gardens of Olga and Theron McLaren
Photo by Amy LV

Birds in the Gardens of Olga and Theron McLaren
Photo by Amy LV

Little Free Library - Built for Olga by Theron
Photo by Amy LV

Please share a comment below if you wish.


  1. Ah, this is just the poem for a thrift shop lover of oldnew things. Especially birdhouses with books - how awesome is that???!

  2. A perfect closing to the series--I won't say ending because I hope you'll post more from time to time! I love the idea of memories living in simple objects and the repetition of "Reuse. Reuse."

  3. I just realized I stopped receiving emails from you the middle of the month. I will resubscribe and hope to find time to look at all the poems I missed. The last email I received was for the poem about the painting. Thanks for all these poems. It was quite a task.

  4. I really enjoyed this series of poems, Amy! What a treat to have a new one each day of April. Thank you for all of your hard work and good luck with the collection.

  5. Amy,

    Congratulations on being hired to do a school presentation with the retired teacher's donation.

    I liked the circle poem choice to end your thrift store series. What a great project from beginning to end.

    The gardens you visited were fun! Thanks for sharing.

  6. I loved each day, Amy. Your thrift store 'word' shopping was delightful, and the pictures enhanced the poems too. Now, I'll never push open that heavy door without thinking of you.Thanks for all!

  7. Perfect ending to a glorious month of poems. You are a wonder! Each was so perfectly crafted!!

    Important message at the end of this one.

  8. I love how you ended the series. So sad to say good-bye to April. And I love Olga's free library. It's on my list to create. Thank you for not only sharing your work but process. Loved it.

  9. I have so enjoyed your thrift store poems! I really hope they end up in a book.

  10. I echo Ruth's comment - your series of poems should be published! Beautiful. Somehow your poem reminds me of a used bookstore, those that I truly enjoy visiting. :)

  11. What a beautiful project. A beautiful anthology of oldnew. It would be a wonderful book.

  12. Amy,
    Your series has been a delight and an inspiration. My students have loved your poems. They've begged for Doll and Duck over and over again. They also requested I figure out a way to get your blog on the iPods so they can read and listen to your poems during our workshop. Thank you for taking us to the Thrift Shop where we've learned to see things anew.


  13. I have loved this, Amy. I've read most of the posts and have the others saved in my Inbox so I won't miss them! What a great project!