Library Love

Wait just a second!
Today’s Poetry Friday wordsmiths are gathered here. Thank you.

Library Love

A federal entity prompted American composer Ira Gershwin to write,
“Shining
star and
inspiration,
worthy of a
mighty nation. . .” *

Ira Gershwin,
1966, in Washington D.C.

A beloved librarian prompted Lee Bennet Hopkins
to write
Storyteller (for Augusta Baker).
Here are
a few lines from it by LBH

. . . And as her voice
reaches
the highest
rafter-

I believe in

once-upon-a-time,

I believe in

happily ever after.
c. 2015 Lee Bennett Hopkins
in Jumping Off Library Shelves


Book Speak!, Jumping Off
Library Shelves & I Am The Book
comprise my tiny & treasured
collection of poem books
for children
about the dreamland worlds of
books that some
of us are lucky to learn
to love,
the
library.

(Book Speak! is from Laura Purdie Salas, with
the other two from poet/editor Lee Bennett Hopkins. I know I have
missed other poetry collections about libraries/books, not
currently on my shelves,
so educate me, please.)

I pulled these titles
off the shelf Monday,
adrift in thoughts of
library grandeur, due to
a recent reverie
at a library that I only
inhabit
infrequently.

Yes, a weekly trip to our
public treasure trove of titles
is a lift. It is a visit made with
with gratitude not only
for the haul of titles borrowed, also,
it’s where
an astute weekly writing partner
hears me read my
latest, and I, hear hers.

But, hey, it’s Washington, D.C.,
where my heart
flutters to enter
library nirvana.

c.2017JanGodownAnnino

LOC

Literally,
Omnivirous
Collection

c.2017 JGA

The Jefferson Building of
the United States Library of Congress
is a cathedral
to research & to reading.
The art-tiled entry,
& artist-painted murals that represent
the fields of knowledge &
the practice of the arts, the
grand stairs & sculpture
of the entry hall of the main
building, are a
palace for the reading people. One stands
straighter, looks higher and dreams
more determinedly,
here.

At the Library of Congress
we visited, or peeked at, a lot.
The Florida maps on display.
The Gutenberg Bible. The
bookcased and domed
reading room. George and
Ira Gerswhin’s piano, just one classy
piece of the incomparable family
LOC legacy, which includes the annual
American songbook Gershwin Prize. *

c.2017JanGodownAnnino

(*This column’s opening rhyme by Ira Gershwin resides, in his own
handwriting, in the visitor’s guestbook kept for
the Ceremonial Office (here) of the Library of Congress.)

A temporary
LOC display of
special
importance to our family,
with one attorney & one
attorney-in-training, is
“Drawing Justice.”

This engaging exhibit of various
dramatic scenes, mainly in color,
from history-making, even
precedent-setting cases,
created on the job by
our nation’s little-known courtroom
chroniclers, many of them women.
Our volunteer guide that day was
Hope, who we thank for an
extra special tour.

One can not live in the
LOC (although one can enjoy breakfast
& lunch there) & eventually
we left. I was not
sad though, partly because
of another feature of
the LOC.

LOC

Love
Online
Collection

c. 2017 JGA

What/where is your poem about the Library of Congress?
……..
postscript
News flash – I join a party of Poetry Friday pals in celebrating our contributions to a new book, available now in print or Kindle. TODAY’s LITTLE DITTY is edited by Michelle H. Barnes. Look at our book!

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Current. Potent. For Children. And you, too.

Wait just a moment! Find the November tree shelter of Poetry Friday tapped by Teacher Dance.

. . .

Read.
Eat.
Sleep.
Repeat.

Our driveway is graced by
a generous black mailbox
in place of
the usual skinny thing. It stands snug against
hurricanes & squirrels, guarding
incoming packages that I always
hope are stories.
I’m pleased to share a bunch of new titles,
plucked from the mailbox & also
some picked up at our thoughtful,
new indy, Mid-Town Reader.

I will devote at least two posts, maybe three, to
cover other books our mailbox sheltered.
Today’s three are highly recommended not only
for their storytelling but also for what they add to
our understanding of potent issues.
From two, I created short found poetry & from one
I offer a quotation.
Appreciations for your visit.

NOW OR NEVER!, is non-fiction for ages 11 and up
by Ray Anthony Shepard that follows
two history-making black journalists-turned-soldiers.
The men work without pay or full respect in a war erupting from a
loathsome stance of people,
including religious leaders of the South & also in the North,
who declared it was legal for white people
to buy & sell black children,
women & men as if they were hogs.
And then, those buyers had the freedom to
do with the enslaved people,
whatever additional cruelness that they wished.

Fortunately, the United States officially won the war
fought by George Stephens & James Henry Gooding.
Our impression of what it was like for the black troops is upended with this
thorough, document-packed, page-turner.
I hope the book’s readership is huge, beyond schools, museums &
& book fairs, to home bookshelves, especially at this time
when we know the uncountable & unknowable
tradegies created by the slavery business
haven’t experienced closure.

“Couriers
ride
as if for dear
life
bearing ponderous
and ominous looking
envelopes . . . ”

from John Henry Gooding’s weekly dispatch,
Oct. 10, 1863, New Bedford Mercury, in
NOW or NEVER!
54th Massachusetts Infantry’s War to End Slavery

c. 2017 by Ray Anthony Shepard

Learn more about Ray Anthony Shepard,
whose grandfather was an enslaved child and whose great, great-grandparents
were enslaved.

Please know about a novel inspired when an observant young
writer visited Senegal, Africa. She was very moved by a child who sat
on a wall near a shore. And that moment made a difference for
debut author Leah Henderson’s ONE SHADOW ON THE WALL.
Another difference is that her parents created unique family travel
to places of black princesses, black cowboys, black
scholars and to historic sites of black achievement. The author
was able to grow up with experiences
feeling pride in people
who looked like her but were rarely reflected in books she read.

Now she offers the poignant & uplifting saga of loving
children adrift with the spirit guidance
of their beloved dead parents, which is is heard or seen only by the responsible
brother, Mor.
Just eleven years old, can Mor possibly be provider, protector & story-bearer to his
sisters, Mina (Amina) & Tima (Fatima.)? After page-turning troubles of
survival, Mina doesn’t wake from a sleep. What can Mor do?
The reader aches & cheers, on this journey with siblings who
sleep on mats & treasure their goat, Jeeg, & find joy with a small
stone, to transform into a doll, a bird, or a fish.
I feel this MG contemporary adventure
is important to many, including all families who read to each other, to
volunteers or teachers who read chapters in classes
including social studies, or at afterschool/weekend
programs, & to curious self-reading bookworm kids.
And it’s also a winner with adults who take a world view in
wanting to understand more about
children’s lives from all regions.

The author’s travels,
extensive research & consultation with pertinent
Sengalese insiders, experts & friends are an assurance that
ONE SHADOW ON THE WALL
is a trusted ticket to traditions and struggles most
readers, such as myself, can’t even begin to imagine
let alone present in nuanced fashion. I appreciate the
stortylling & the education.

Jeeg

Boabab.
Hollow of
tree.
Squeezed.
Mor,
Jeeg.

Hideout.

“m-a-a.”
“m-a-a.”

found in
ONE SHADOW ON THE WALL
by Leah Henderson

For more on this book & author Leah Henderson

The picture book biography,
MAMA AFRICA! by Kathryn Erskine with artwork from Charly Palmer,
follows the singing activist Makeba – Zenzile Miriam Makeba.
As a toddler she danced & sang. As a young adult, she watched a friend
die because a segregated ambulance wouldn’t treat or carry him after a car wreck.
Makeba lead and sang songs in tribe languages,
carrying powerful opposition messages, singing words
that white South Africans didn’t bother
to try to understand.

Because she eloquently & movingly asked the world to
acknowledge the existence of & help end,
apartheid, she was banished from her homeland.
An invited speaker at the U.N., Makeba asked the world to intervene
against South African’s brutal atrocities & unfair
imprisonment of black people. She appeared on stage
with Martin Luther King. Jr.
& with Harry Belafonte to advocate for justice.
She lost relatives murdered during suppression of blacks and
felt empowered to work
internationally in defense of children, women & men who suffered
the constant terrors. The incident many can cite is the killing of
peaceful children in Soweto township.
In 1990, Makeba returned to a hard-fought, changing
South Africa & saw Nelson Mandela walk out of prison.

The author, as a young white child, enjoyed black friendships
in defiance of apartheid South Africa, during temporary years there.
Heartfelt author photographs & notes offer long-held connections to
the theme. The text is lyrical. Illustrations from artist Charly Palmer
are an artsong of pulsing color, layered & bold.

Songs of call, response!

Khawuleza
alerting song – police approach
Lakutshona Ilanga
searching song – jails & prisons hold missing loved ones
Mayibuye iAfrika
returning song – Africa should be for native Africans
Mbaeke iAfrika
returning song – land should go to rightful owners
Ndoemnyama
forertelling song – apartheid will fail

Nkosi Sikelel iAfrika
asking song – “God Bless Africa”

found in
MAMA AFRICA!
How Miriam Mekeba Spread Hope with her Song
c. 2017 Kathryn Erskine

Learn more about KATHRYN ERSKINE, a popular novelist for young readers, who has won the National Book Award. I have read many of her novels, which mean a great deal to me, especially MOCKINGBIRD. She has a new novel, THE INCREDIBLE MAGIC OF BEING, one of my postal box finds I look forward to being with, soon.

Learn more about artist CHARLY PALMER

What to do with scary thoughts + tote love

(((((Way over here in Kidlitosphere are your Poetry Friday pals.)))))

Do you love totes?

A tote is expressive,
& earns its keep,
a canvas workhorse (on duty, below.)
This one arrived
empty last week when I ordered it
from the great folks at
Every Town who do heavy lifting,
to make our country
safe for kids.
Despite everything gone awry with safety,
and the political trouble spots
of our dear Nation,
I believe there are always more of the
good folks sharing joy than folks
creating the bad.

Totes love books.
Out of shelf space, I stash
incoming books in them.
I won’t try that with a T-shirt, will I?
Books are blessedly arriving often this fall.
Today, unpacking this special tote working as a bookcase,
I tip you off to –

ON ANY DARK AND SPOOKY NIGHT

A must-have Halloween pleaser, I
know you will want to order it
to prove how brave
YOU are.
The poems are the creation of my
longtime newsroom pal.
I wrote the intro.
At only $6, I suspect some
of you will want your own
to boo! someone close to you.

A few tantalizing lines . . .

Night’s Walk
by Audrey Parente

Soft steps rustle leaves
in shadows among folds
of night’s dark bed-gown.

Scented air gusts meet
flirtatious clouds, a courtship
of giddy, twirling clowns

But then . . .

c. 1992, 2017 Audrey Parente
all rights reserved

************************************************

A LINE IN THE SAND Barbara Ann White
ACTIVIST SENTIMENTS P. Gabrielle Foreman
THE FUGITIVE’s GIBRALTAR Kathryn Grover

All three of these titles
unveil aspects of the layered story of
people stolen from Africa,
brought by inhumane treatment to our shores &
the subsequent horrific
tragedy & occasional blessed heroics
& rare simple decency,
of what happened next to entire families.
Could it have been insanity that led most
religious leaders, North and South, to
go along/get along with the horrors lived by
enslaved children, women, men & free blacks?
Their ostrich ways meant that War was the only
path for this Nation, to end the
selfish barbarism of human-ownership of humans.
A way I co-exist with the
troubling state of our Nation is to double-down
on lapses, gaps & holes in my education such as
these books begin to correct. The other way is to
write & —
that, happy to report, is going apace.

************
Last time I mentioned filling in the blanks of my
ABCs it was with Faith topic books.
The passalongs to two Bookseedstudio commenters are
WHAT DO OUR NEIGHBORS BELIEVE, flying off to Carmela Martino.
THE FAITH CLUB is for Robyn Hood Black.
I expect to walk up to the post office soon. If they aren’t
received within 2 weeks, please let me know.
Congratulations.

************

What a Wonderful World as Louis Armstrong
sang, is how I feel when celebrations about a culture
not my own arrive.
This week’s visit is via
DUMPLING SOUP,
winner of a Little Brown & Company award.
I have read it in a library but this is the first
that this delight is my very own copy. For some time,
it has cooked up love magic, spreading goodness through kitchens
across the lands.
Jama Kim Rattigan’s Korean-American story may even
give me the push some cold day to create
what patient Marisa does –
make her own O-no (delicious, in Hawaiian)
mandoo (dumplings in Korean.)
I am practicing a few words,
guided by Jama’s glossary.
At a time when we all are more focused on Korea
(positive thoughts wafting that way)
it is heartening to think of the multitude
of beautiful Korean-American families in the USA,
which DUMPLING SOUP reminds me of,
although with a very loved Korean-American family
here in town, I shouldn’t need a reminder.
The colorful illustrations are from Lillian Hsu-Flanders.
If you can find it on the secondary market as I did, consider
yourself lucky. If you can or you can’t, you will still
learn a lot from Jama’s generous online story
about the path to publication.

**********
I am happy to backpack in spirit
with a new young Mom travel guide writer
in Florida,
Terri Mashour.
Terri is a forest Mom, meaning that
she brought her little girl along on miles of
woods trails that the wee one was all giggles, to explore.
This professional forester’s contribution to
Florida travel books is
BACKCOUNTRY TRAILS OF FLORIDA. She is co-founder of Fun4FirstCoastKids.com
Congratulations Terri! Hope to see you on the path.

* * *
And speaking of Florida travel,
a shunpiker guide yours truly
researched and wrote (through three editions)
is Still. In. Print.

********************************************************************************************

I am thrilled to recommend

FORTUNATELY THE MILK by Neil Gaiman.
This tall tale, which grows crazier, deeper &
splashier with the page-turning,
will be flying to a young Annino family I love.
They will chuckle over both the story & also, the illustrations, from
Skottie Young. (Although I snared an
autographed copy of Neil Gaiman’s CRAZY HAIR for our daughter
years back, this one is going out autograph-nekked.)
I did not know that N.G. shared my worries about
Hurricane (Tropical Storm) Irma. His thought about what he does
with worries, are spot-on for writers. His plan
works when scares other than hurricanes flow by, too.
(advice is at very end of his Oct. 6 journal.)

Next tote time, I hope to see you around as I unpack a different book tote. Thank you so much for visiting today.

“>The Everytown Tote

Irma’s Tinkerbelle

(PoemFriends are peacefully greeted (Sept. 21 – International Peace Day) over at The Poem Farm with Poetry Friday host, Amy.)

Directly across our house. From Hurricane (tropical storm) Irma Sept. 2017

In flights of twos and tens,
hummingbirds darted in light rain to a feeder
I watched in Alabama.
That was one of the beauty spots
calming us
when we evacuated North Florida,
away from high winds
and waterfalls of Irma’s rain.

Maybe because my pictures of them define blurry,
or there were so many
of the whirry, bitty birds,
I made a startling leap of
imagination. J.M. Barrie must have been a
hummingbird watcher
. And I decided that
hummingbirds must have been his inspiration for
Tinkerbelle in PETER PAN.

TINKERBELLE

Our city & county officials called for
a voluntary evacuation.
When a sturdy, outdoorsy,
trusted writer pal informed
me of that alert, we knew it
was right to go with the flow.
Although I had snared the last room reservation
at a chain hotel we like, it was nicer to give that up
to another family & accept
the offer of shelter of another writer pal, whose
spacious house at tree top level,
book-filled from beam to brim,
defines the word retreat.

The hovering Tinkerbells inspired me to
write a poem, Jaunty,
in longhand there (below), which
may fit an intriguing
prompt from Carole Boston Weatherford
at TODAY’S LITTLE DELIGHT/DITTY.

I also found out how one very special canine
works a laptop.
I read borrowed books from our pal,
Joan Broerman, author, writer’s workshop leader
who is a legendary leader in the Society of Children’s Writers & Illustrators.
In generous Joan fashion, she also gave me a book for the road
(BIG MAGIC, Elizabeth Gilbert.)
My hubby & I so very much appreciate Joan for providing calm
energy & generator advice & much more
in the storm.

Maggie & Me

Back home, in North Florida Irma slowed
to a wide, walloping tropical terror, downgraded
from a hurricane.
Irma veered away east of our North Florida hilly town,
leaving people to cope with downed trees & hours
without power. I hope that many, looking at the
destruction on islands and along rivers/lagoons/canal
communities,
understand how fortunate they are not to have to live
in a Florida flood plain. (This is land that should
be set aside from development, as along the
Hillsborough River near Tampa.)

Here is my Hurricane Irma poem.

Jaunty
by J.G. Annino

A bitty bird creature,
darting,
discovers
empty feeder.
Food gone.
Hovers, hovers, hovers.
Human helper, help instantly!
Jaunty keeps looking.
More nourishment needed!

One person
quickly,
quietly,
responds,
rendering
sustenance
to
ultra-vibrant
winsome wonder.
c.2017JanGAnnino

Jaunty

Thank you all, first responders. Thank you librarians, who are among the many groups organizing for hurricane relief.

Thank you for collecting images of Hurricane Irma’s impact,
Washington Post , including photographs from my
beloved streets of coastal Southwest Florida,
where I no longer work & live, & from coastal Northeast Florida, where
we sometimes play.

Irma’s irritation

Poetry Friday is flashy over here.

(also, winners of books from my last post at Bookseedstudio haven’t been notified yet.
With work on my verse novel, I am delayed in that project. Appreciations for your patience.)

In the meantime . . .

Hurricane Irma scares every sensible person
with connections to our treasured
Caribbean Islands & Florida.
So I feel it’s fitting that
I share another scare, a fright that I hope
you will want to see because it has been delightfully
distracting to me, to put it together on short notice.

It is my new intro to
a wicked collection of Halloween poems that
were brilliantly created
by my longtime writing pal, Audrey Parente.
First pubbed as a private chapbook in 1992,
this chilly collection returns now in 2017,
in time for Halloween. I’ll report back with
the link about it when ready for prime time.
I’ve previously mentioned this chapbook
at Bookseedstudio. And here
I am reading from it.

Fortunately any poetry person likely owns
a stack of spooky poems or stories
to read, by candlelight or flash,
or FLASHLIGHT NIGHT power,
if the electric juice
fails due to
furies of weather.

c. all rights reserved
Jan reading
ON ANY DARK AND
SPOOKY NIGHT, written by
Audrey Parente.

If you or loved ones or
beloved places are anywhere underneath the path
H. Irma, H. Katia or H. Jose, my best wishes & prayers for
safe hurricane days include you, too. Now, The Intro….

Bleatings to all.
Only the fortunate few
will dare turn pages of
this clever collection.
And why is that?

The Headless Horseman.
Carrie.
Frankenstein.
Nurse Ratched.
Thing.
Perhaps you know
these chilling
characters of literary legend?

As you inch through
these pages, or rather,

when these potent pages
are through with you,
it will become clear that none
of the denizens listed
dare out-Boo! the
inventor of this edition.

In tattered times before this,
when animals talked
and the undead walked,
Audrey Parente,
damsel of dark words,
crushed creeping chinch bugs,
added to those bodies,
jaundiced juice
for her purple purpose
– invisible ink.

Her silently screaming
scrawlings and scribbles
slunk their way to visible
publication
in an ancient age –
nineteen hundred ninety-two.

Fortunately for the
discriminating Halloween howler,
these visions rise again.
Relax, sit back. Allow them
to haunt you, taunt you,
delight you, fright you,
educate you, saturate you.

You are in the hands of a
master mistress of the
verse arts, the singular
Audrey Parente*,
with her terrorizing truths in

ON ANY DARK AND SPOOKY NIGHT.

– J.G. Annino, 2017

* warning!: author assumes no responsibility for resulting strokes, faints, heart attacks, etc.

Finally that scary weather picture book: CLOUDY WITH A CHANCE OF MEATBALLS. Take cover!

Sanctuary + pass along books

Sanctuary + book pass alongs

I am exiting from my self-created
verse novel writing retreat
to share three book titles for
these times.

These times
meaning, days following
the loss of three lives at Charlottesville
due to a domestic terrorism murder &
affiliated helicopter crash.

LOVELOVELOVELOVELOVELOVE
Heather D. Heyer
H. Jay Cullen Berke M.M. Bates
PEACEPEACEPEACEPEACEPEACEPEACEPEACE

c.2017 JanGodownAnnino Tallahassee memorial for Charlottesville – two friends, two lights

As one of my first actions in response to these deaths,
I sought out books that can help me better understand
various faiths & cultures.

I am one of those uninformed persons who has never
taken a world religions class, although as
a Christian, I feel it is my responsibility to know much
more about my Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic, Baha’i, Jewish
& other-faith, neighbors.

So I am fortunate to be learning from
WHAT DO OUR NEIGHBORS BELIEVE?
by Howard R. Greenstein, Kendra Hotz and John Kaltner.
I will pass this book along to a commenter here.

I also bought THE FAITH CLUB from Ranya Idliby, Suzanne Oliver
and Priscilla Warner. This is also a book for adults, but it grew from
discussion, when the three authors actually
orgaized to write a children’s
picture book. I will
also pass it along to a commenter here.

Please help.
I’m looking for titles of recent (2016-2017 or upcoming)
K-1st grade excellent picture books
that unfold lively, engaging stories with joy,
while managing to represent
various cultures & beliefs.
Appreciations for your recommendations, which
I expect to find & place in the book bag I take to school,
as a longtime volunteer reader.

LITTLES
c.2017 AG Ford illustration
Kelly DiPUcchio text

I found a 2017 bundle of joy, compliments of
the LeRoy Collins Leon County Public Library,
that is
LITTLES, And How They Grow by Kelly DiPucchio
(Grace for President), with artwork from AG Ford
(What Color is My World.)

From LITTLES:

Littles are washed in warm sudsy baths
with duckies and daddies
that quack and who laugh

I can’t help but feeling, even knowing in my heart,
that if the Ohio young man responsible for
the compassionate Heather’s death,
had grown up in a compassionate
family whose members
regularly read him books
such as LITTLES, he wouldn’t have been on
the wrong section of the participants, that
weekend. Nor would he have written
that high school paper tribute to
the hateful set of beliefs that is Nazism.

My heart goes out to
the victims’ families,
to Charlottesville and
personally to the children’s authors
I know in that lovely area of Virginia,
along to educators and librarians,
as the community
works harder than ever,
to continue on what many know is its
true progressive path.

Deep in my heart
I do believe
We shall Overcome
Some day

I feel fortunate to know Poetry Friday, a Shining Light
& promoter of peace.

And I found this little light to shine
for the whole world
via LITTLES’ author
Kelly DiPucchio & I hope you like this little light 🙂

Also please know these urls:
http://www.wjkbooks.com/Products/0664230652/what-do-our-neighbors-believe.aspx

https://www.thefaithclub.com/ranya-idliby-questions.html

Summer fine

By today all winners of a copy of the dog-gone great  p.b., THE FLEATASTICS, are notified.
A link back to the Q/A with author/illustrator Lisa Desimini, if you are catching up.

Here is a link to Laura Shovan’s Poetry fb page that some of us are reading & contributing to this summer & actually since February & then forward through the year’s end.

And, now  some images of fine times. Wishing you more reading, more writing & more time in the great outdoors this summer. See you here in September!

unnamed-5

c.2017 My handsome Dad Annino & his great-grandson namesake. BRAVO!

IMG_0779 (1)

sloooow down, dears. please. c. 2017

19990047_10211860520380759_7462630826864973280_n

Our world-loving college gal – Joy at the UNISPHERE c. 2017 Anna Annino

Artist-Author LISA DESIMINI & THE FLEATASTICS + book for you!

LISA DESIMINI & THE FLEATASTICS

Today I am thrilled to interview my favorite picture book
artist who is also a dear pal.
Lisa Desimini is a frequent illustrator – interpreter of poems
for children, in beloved titles such as

DOODLE DANDIES, Poems that Take Shape
GOOD MOUSEKEEPING And Other Animal Poems
LOVE LETTERS
TOUCH THE POEM

The poets Lisa appears with, between covers, are
among my many favorites, including –
Naomi Shihab Nye, J. Patrick Lewis, Arnold Adoff.  
 
Lisa is also the author of her own delightful picture books.
They include DOT THE FIREDOG and also a story my
Book Bear puppet & I schlep along to reading time at
school each October, TRICK-OR-TREAT, SMELL MY FEET!

c. Peggy Gifford/ Lisa Desimini

FAMOUS Naomi Shihab Nye/Lisa Desimini


Until recently, Lisa’s newest lovely books are
THE GREAT BIG GREEN, which she illustrated for poet Peggy Gifford, and
FAMOUS, illustrated for poet Naomi Shihab Nye.

This spring Lisa’s newest, THE FLEATASTICS, which she
wrote and illustrated, jumped into the welcoming world.
These reviews scratch the surface:

 “Desimini’s frolicking microscopic world of fleas is a realm within a realm…
Amid the plot about perseverance, (she) sprinkles in the flea family’s running
commentaries.
The engaging, brightly colored scenes filled with comical asides
should be a great story time read for high-energy kids.”
– Booklist
 
“Desimini’s…universe of fleas delights with boundless imagination
and pockets of hilarious flea dialogue, vivaciously depicted.”
– Kirkus Reviews
 
 Let’s give a bouncy Poetry Friday welcome to LISA DESIMINI as she shares about
THE FLEATASTICS.

LISA: Hi Jan, I’m thrilled to be a part of your book blog!
Thanks for having me!

THE FLEATASTICS Artist-Author LISA DESIMINI, c. 2017 Lisa Desimini


Q. 
It’s a joy to be with you, Lisa.
You jumped from one coast to the other. When we visited years ago
in New Orleans, your base was the NYC area. These days the West Coast
is your muse. Is the children’s book vibe different in California and as
author and artist in children’s literature, what resources do you
connect with there?

LISA: SCBWI has a summer conference here and I’ve attended twice.
I saw friends from NY and met some new ones here on the west coast.
I received tons of valuable information and inspiration.
Even though I’ve done many books, I find there is always more to learn.

Q.
I remember your sharing (and I kept it under wraps) about this lively
idea that you couldn’t shake off – a flea circus!  It made me giggle.
And now that I have met tiny main character Sarafleana, I have a seat
on the front row of the tent. What were the high points of your creating
Sarafleana, her family, and her journey?

LISA: It was a long circuitous journey. I tried out several main characters with different motivations.
I had Farley Fillmore–he was too small to be a part of the circus.
I thought about a traveling sporting event with a tiny flea that was never allowed to play.
When I came up with the first line, “Sarafleana was a born jumper.”
I knew I was on the right track.
Another joy was coming up with flea-inspired ideas, names and terms like the grand fleanale.
The classic name Sarafeana was perfect, I just had to add the “l” to transform it to Sarafleana.


Q.
One of the delights of this book is finding the sly puns and terms, especially
on re-reading THE FLEATASTICS for hidden treasures.
Here is the chicken or egg question. Art and image first, or words and story?

LISA: Well, the first thing I came up with was a quick sketch of a Dachshund.
His tail was on page one, then there were 13 spreads of his body,
(just a line through the middle of the page) the final spread was his head.
I thought maybe there could be different scenarios going on behind the dog.
The seasons could change or the weather.

One day I looked at that simple sketch and saw the dog’s body as a stage.
That’s when I came up with the idea of a flea circus performing.
I developed the story before I did any serious sketching.
It took many rounds of sketches before I came up with the look of the fleas.
I wanted them to look cute and silly not scary and mean.

Q.
You aced that!
Switching to another species, I know about the serendipitous arrival of the kitty,
Crash, into your life. (How is Crash these days?) But you LOVE dogs, too.
Right here on the shelf, I’ve pulled out DOT THE FIRE DOG, the sweet visit
with a dedicated dalmation that you wrote and illustrated. What is it
about dogs that makes them ideal characters for picture books?

LISA:I think dogs are loyal, silly and present.
They are our pals.
I’ve only had and been around good-natured dogs that want to be a part of everything.
And they can be so wise.
I am now a kitty lover since we got our, Crash.

Beloved Crash devotedly assists in all aspects of office work.
c. Lisa Desimini


If things go well with THE FLEATASTICS I would love to do a sequel with cats.
Cats have their own silly quirky habits.
I think grooming their entire body, hairballs and catnip might be a part of that story.

Q.
As an upright who has lived with spunky kitty Ginger
for 16 years, that sequel sounds so mewvelous.

For visual artists and for writers who glom onto art-process
details, please share a peek into your studio.
At home or off site?
Corner of a room or an entire four walls?
Natural light or electric?  
Digital-creation or hand-drawn?
And, just how do you corral all the supplies that a dedicated
collage artist such as yourself, wrangles?

LISA: Good question! I counted… my studio is about eighty-eight steps from our house.
It was the garage turned into an apartment by a previous owner.
So it has a bathroom, bedroom and kitchen, but I removed the stove and put two sets of flat files in there. They contain all my collage papers and many paintings from kids books and book jackets.
I have a futon bed for guests or in case I work late.
I have acrylics, oils and my computer.

c. Lisa Desimini

For THE FLEATASTICS, I made paper collages, I sealed them with a clear gel and painted shadows and highlights and added texture.
Then I scanned them into the computer and added backgrounds and other details.
I made the fleas in the computer because they were too tiny.
I keep a folder of scanned papers, objects, fabric, photos and painting textures in my computer so I can do my collages digitally, if I have to.

Q.
Appreciations for a groovy peek into your process and the inspiring studio.

We are not giving away any story spoilers today about performers
in THE FLEATASTICS circus, to savor the surprises in reading it.
But before we leave the famous act, is there any encore information
you’d like to share?

LISA: This book was very different for me, it was challenging but
SO much fun!


I loved working with thought/dream bubbles, the background
flea dialogue, and subplots.
I want to explore that format even more so I’m working on a
graphic novel idea about a magician.

 
Q.
A Lisa Desimini graphic novel – that sounds magical.
Thank you again for this visit about fun but also educational,
THE FLEATASTICS.
(I didn’t know anything about flea hatching!)
Please tell high-jumping Sarafleana, Brava!
And we wish THE FLEATASTICS family many tents of happy
performances ’round the world.
Also a scratch of the heads, to sweet
Sparky and sleepy Snoozer.

LISA:
Thanks, Jan! I loved your Q’s!

Q:
Applause back at you, Lisa!

This is a joyful book that unfolds in
an easy- to- follow surprise story line, yet with many fascinating asides.
I love seeing each little flea’s “look” and how the visitors
to the dog park have personalities, such as the one dog always
thinking of the yellow ball.
Also, I love seeing the woman wonder about a cat park.
Every time I read it, I find discoveries. You will too.

THE FLEATASTICS Show Continues

Now, ladies and gentlemen, girls and boys, cats and dogs,
fleas and fleamasters,
Lisa’s Desimini’s flea circus offers an encore right here on
Bookseedstudio’s stage with our giveaways, via generous
publisher Boyds Mills Press.
Please comment below and your name will identify you.
If I don’t know you let me say, Hello!
Be sure to share your real name & contact info (website link, email)
if that info can’t be easily found online. If you don’t want to be considered
for the give-away – and we do have multiple copies – you can still comment & say so.
After Monday July 24, more comments are welcome, but they won’t be entered,
so be sure to comment before Tuesday July 25.
Thank you.

Hop over to these links, too.

Mr. Schu Reads
Watch a book trailer for THE FLEATASTICS

I previously reported on THE GREAT BIG GREEN

Home from Canada

I am recently home from Canada & sifting through
provincial magazines & newspapers I picked up along the way.
I am fussing with cameras that don’t want to upload pictures of
deep woods & river otters &
am admiring Emily Carr art cards I brought home.

But today I want to tip you off to Canadian poet Jordan Abel,
whose heritage includes a father from the
First Nation Nisga’a (Tsimshiam),
of the British Columbia mainland.

Jordan Abel is an award-winning literary artist who is likely
to become well known far beyond his land. While we were in
British Columbia he received a $10,000 award for his poetry
& it was delightful to be greeted by positive poetry news
on vacation.

INJUN, his new book, which I haven’t yet read, is a work of
synthesis, & erasure. If you have ever clomped into the mass of
U.S.-produced old Western genre pulps – and some more
recent ones – you owe it to yourself to learn about this book.

If not, you will be interested anyway, if you are keen to feel
the effect all those racists rants have had on one First Nations
child. This child is now a talented poet & is not taking it
any more.

Jordan Abel hangs pulp westerns up by their own stirrups, with
deftness & irony, according to passages I have read
online. I am eager to spend time with his books, including
THE PLACE of SCRAPS. I found out about Jordan Abel from
Marsha Lederman, of The Globe and Mail.
. . . .

I am grateful to my father, Albert Godown, for keeping
accessible important books & articles about Native Americans
in our 1960s living room & for speaking with great respect
of Native peoples, although his only scant connection, and to
a Plains Tribe, was through marriage. So I have long been
attuned to learning from the descendants of those who
arrived on this continent 10,000 or more years ago.

I lost my father when I was in my 20s, but I always come
round, eventually, to happiness, on this
Father’s Day Weekend,
because I could enjoy his steady storytelling that
lasted to the end, his 72nd year.
He drove me from New Jersey into Canada when I was just a kid,
to view my first New Brunswick moose in the wild, & to grow bug-eyed
at the tidal pull of the great Bay of Fundy. On his birthday, in
Canada, I dedicated my recent trip from North Florida to the other
Canadian shore, to him.

Happy Father’s Day.

. . . .

Somewhere on Vancouver Island near Victoria, the province’s capitol city.

Emily Carr

Emily Carr, Canadian genius “Among the Firs”/ Emily Carr House
https://www.emilycarr.com


British Columbia<

If you would like to dip into wonderful POETRY FRIDAY it is collected with a great
post about the new Poet Laureate at the Library of Congress, by the generous Carol’s Corner.

HERE WE GO

Whee! Here We Go!

Just the sort of thing I would sing after –
a holiday weekend traffic jam is unstuck, OR
we set out on a loooong beach walk that doesn’t end until land ends, OR
my verse novel clocks in at halfway home.
I can now say I’ve experienced these three.

So this post celebrates a gift that Bookseedstudio
received aways back, awarded for my correctly
guessing the number of dactyls jammed into in a jelly jar
or somesuch feat over at Today’s Little Ditty,
which is also known by me as
Today’s Little Delight.

My prize is to finally pop the cork on my
pretty copy of the
anthology HERE WE GO, created by poetry mavens
Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong.

My particular sample of the book is graced with
autographs from poem makers Robyn Hood Black and
Michelle Heidenrich Barnes. Alongside them, between
World art covers from Franzi Draws, are
Naomi Shihab Nye, Joseph Bruchac,
David Harrison and Renee LaTulippe, among a buncha
poet luminaries whose work I
like to fetch off the shelf for fuel.
Because of this book
I am also now a fan of artist Franzi. Go look
her up.

“HELLO” copyright, Franzi Paetzold, all rights reserved

HERE WE GO, lifts up ideas on every
page of the slim volume,
which is also a workbook. But I especially
want to share just a coupla lines from two poems.

Girl Grit

What if
I saved lions
some endangered species
using every strong, skillful word
I know?

© Margaret Simon

Look for the Helpers

Look for the helpers
the healers
the givers

The arms-open
hands-holding
everyday heroes.

© Michele Heidenrich Barnes

Potent.

The main character I’m moving through
life in my 1800s-set story,
is in the business of
saving, similar to the character
in “Girl Grit.”

And she is also looking for the
arms-open
hands-holding
everyday heroes
of “Look for the Helpers.”

The full poems are in the book. If your students or you are about saving
and helping, remember to crack open your
copy if you have one, or find a sample for your
table. Lucky you, if you nailed a coupla autographs!

 

HERE WE GO Final front cover 121116 JPEG

Poetry Friday + 2017 Progressive Poem of Kidlitosphere

The usual Poetry Friday frolic is collected
today at Dori Reads.
. . . .

We are just shy of the half-way point
in April & Nattional Poetry Month. Lucious links of the 2017 menu are
at Jama’s Alphabet Soup.
It’s a bodacious buffet!
I will tip you off to
Poetry Mosaic.
Take off your shoes, put up your feet & allow the poets on stage there to
entertain you with their readings. It’s among the wonderful new additions to the month.

Back here at Bookseedstudio’s Friday the 14th’s day in
the National Poetry Month Progressive Poem of
Kidlitosphere, I am
sculpting in the meandering
playground of words. We are creating
together but separately, smoothly, sweetly,
a new poem. Makes me giddy!  Yesterday’s mighty fine strong line from Margaret Simon/
Reflections on the Teche, officially known as line 13, needs a neighbor. So line 14 arrives:

Shiver me. Look who’s here. Must I disappear?

See if you think that fits
as the poem-to-date appears a bit further, below.

As always, we are soothingly stage-directed
by Progressive Poem pixie & perpetrator
Irene Latham at Live Your Poem. (Who quilted/created
our lovely logo.)
Handsprings are boing boing boinging
all around for her idea & influence.
Enjoy the dragonwords
and when this is titled at day 30
perhaps you’ll dare read it to a
captive
castle
audience?

Untitled 2017 Progressive Poem In Progress

I’m fidget, friction, ragged edges—
I sprout stories that frazzle-dazzle,
stories of castles, of fires that crackle,
with dragonwords that smoke and sizzle.

But edges sometimes need sandpaper,
like swords need stone and clouds need vapour.
So I shimmy out of my spurs and armour
facing the day as my fickle, freckled self.

I thread the crowd, wear freedom in my smile,
and warm to the coals of conversation.
Enticed to the stage by strands of story,
I skip up the stairs in anticipation.

Flip around, face the crowd, and freeze!
Shiver me. Look who’s here. Must I disappear?

. . . .

Now here’s the wand hand off to Brenda,
at Friendly Fairy Tales,
who will weave her magic over words for day 15.

Line-leaders day by day:
April 2017
1 Heidi at my juicy little universe
2 Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference
3 Doraine at Dori Reads
4 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty
5 Diane at Random Noodling
6 Kat at Kat’s Whiskers
7 Irene at Live Your Poem
8 Mary Lee at A Year of Reading
9 Linda at TeacherDance
10 Penny at a penny and her jots
11 Ramona at Pleasures from the Page
12 Janet F. at Live Your Poem
13 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
14 Jan at Bookseedstudio
15 Brenda at Friendly Fairy Tales
16 Joy at Poetry for Kids Joy
17 Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect
18 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog
19 Pat at Writer on a Horse
20 BJ at Blue Window
21 Donna at Mainely Write
22 Jone at Jone Ruch MacCulloch
23 Ruth at There is no such thing as a godforsaken town
24 Amy at The Poem Farm
25 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge
26 Renee at No Water River
27 Matt at Radio, Rhythm and Rhyme
28 Michelle at Michelle Kogan
29 Charles at Poetry Time
30 Laura Purdie Salas at Writing the World for Kids

Happy Happy Poetry Friday! And please remember that
the collected castle of Friday characters is
at Dori Reads.

 

Sofa sabbatical

Sofa sabbatical
by Jan Godown Annino

She said
I won’t say break a leg
(before the event)
because that really happened when
I said that to my Sister once.

Once spoken does an I won’t say count?

Upon the counterpane
two blanket pillows
prop up dancer’s fracture.
Elegant term,
masking clumsy movement.

Defined: strong tendon creates inversion at bone stress.

The show did go on,
seated.
This was not brave,
feeling only a
sprain strain pain.

Who am I to diagnose?

My handsome
helped me home,
right foot carrying
an Eastertime goose egg,
purple.

As a child I memorized RLS’s
Land of Counterpane.
As in his poem: All my work
beside me lays
to keep me busy all the day.

I think Stevenson called for toys.

© 2017 Jan Godown Annino

. . . .
To be true to Stevenson, will summon toys.
Would rather toys beside me lay.
But wait – where are toys?

. . .
I am looking forward to tomorrow’s Poetry Friday when I add to

the 2017 Progressive Poem

that Margaret at Reflections on the Teche so handily added to today.

(My indulgence here is fresh, with three ending lines, discarded. Any thoughts?
It’s been fun to present at March and April events. I miss mobility, but should have a walking boot soon enough.)

Young #Tolkien in a Picture Book

Do you know there is a worldwide day of appreciation
for the works of J.R.R. Tolkien – a reading day?

O.K. I should have known. Some of you smarties do.
But do you know there is a brand-new illustrated book
for ages 4 to 8,
about the child days of the genius creator of
THE HOBBIT
and THe LORD OF THE RINGS
triology?
That’s news to you? Great. I’m as tickled as if I’ve had a
large plate of seed cakes for second breakfast,
to introduce you to this book.

 

9781626720923

The cover art work by Eliza Wheeler is one reason to hug
this sweetie into your world.
The storytelling by Oxford, UK expert Caroline McAlister
is compelling and her back matter is illuminating.

I hope you  enjoy my Q/A here about this brand new p.b. biography.
At that site of educators, librarians and writers on blogger/blogspot, you’ll have a chance
receive one of the multiple
copies we are handing out, to celebrate the book birthday of
JOHN RONALD’S DRAGONS.
(Monday April 3, midnight, is comment close time.)

Thoughts here are so very welcome, also.
But the book give away is only at the link above.
Thank you.

And now a J.R.R. Tolkien verse from
“Far Over the Misty Mountains Cold”
in THE HOBBIT:

On silver necklaces they strung
The flowering stars, on crowns they hung
The dragon-fire, in twisted wire
They meshed the light of moon and sun.

You can visit this fun fan site for the full poem. which I feel some of you
can recite, or at least verses of it.

Poetry Month
I am anticipating all your “flowering stars”
of April’s Poetry Month.
We are fortunate that
talented poet & Poetry Friday maven/mentor Amy collects
us at the colorful POEM FARM.
http://www.poemfarm.amylv.com

Billy, meet Tameka

This past week breezed right in.
Sunday we took a brisk walk that turned out to
be a lovely 10 miles in the sand near the Apalachicola
fishing village, where a book event caught our attention.
And the week also brought us March 22, the birthday
of Billy Collins, so beloved a poem-maker,
he has served as U.S. Poet Laureate twice.

I have a few lines to share from a poem maker new to
me, who I discovered at a workshop this summer,
but first I’d like to pay tribute to Collins.
He is suitably feted by the Poetry Friday community this month.

(And if you are looking for more Poetry Friday greatness,
it is here this week.)

These words below are from Billy Collins’
“To My Favorite 17-Year-Old High School Girl”

For some reason, I keep remembering that Lady Jane Grey


was Queen of England when she was only fifteen,


but then she was beheaded, so never mind her as a role model.

 Frankly, who cares if Annie Oakley was a crack shot at 15

or if Maria Callas debuted as Tosca at 17?

We think you are special by just being you

playing with your food and staring into space.

c.Billy Collins all rights reserved

 

See this for an interesting Billy Collins page.
Now here are two verses from the poem maker I don’t
think you know. She brings this one to us in
the voice of a child.
The girl just loves her skipping around moments,
close to home.
It is from “Around Our Way on Neighbors’ Day”
by Tameka Fryer Brown:

Blue sky, no clouds,
Corner store.
One more
Block to walk before
I’m home. It’s a special day
today, around our way.

Blue sky, no clouds.
No one stares,
or cares
That loud music blares.
Hustle… bustle… salsa sway,
Wild day, around our way.
c. 2017 Tameka Fryer Brown

AROUND OUR WAY ON NEIGHBORS’ DAY by
Tameka Fryer Brown
art by
Charlotte Riley-Webb

Neighbors pour out into the street to share
food, music and dancing and the child whirls through
all the yards and visits the front porches,
in a sweet community coming together of people of
varied cultures.

I am not alone in following the work of Tameka
Fryer Brown.
Here is what Kirkus said about this poem,
published in picture book form with sensational
art by Charlotte Wiley-Webb. “…In this lively and
accessible poem, a multicultural community brings food, music
and laughter to the streets to celebrate their neighborhood….”

I think I’ll mosey over Tameka Fryer Brown’s way. She is one to watch.

Nancy Willard

Nancy Willard

Hello all Poetry Friday seekers.
I am grateful to Heidi who organizes it here this week.

This week, I am spending time with
my Nancy Willard books,
especially, THE SALT MARSH,
TELLING TIME,
A VISIT TO WILLIAM BLAKE’S INN &
STEP LIGHTLY, Poems for the Journey,
collected by Nancy Willard.

I want to pick one to share Saturday,
when I feel fortunate to be meeting with
teens at the request of a legendary
librarian I treasure, Ms. Lenita Joe.

Since Nancy Willard treasured every poem
she placed in
STEP LIGHTLY,
reading them feels like two chairs are pulled up
before a big window overlooking a salt marsh,
tea is poured and
a conversation begins.

Nearly every selection speaks to me, especially
the poems about writing,
but for this post I’m sharing two lines,
from Emily Hahn, in her poem,

“Wind Blowing”
“I can see everything, all around the earth;
Red sun dying, gold sun’s birth.”

c. Emily Hahn, all rights reserved

I feel that is Nancy’s world now,
stepping lightly,
knowing and seeing everything.

Here is a sweet memory written
just a few days ago by her friend
and former neighbor, poet
Lee Bennett Hopkins.

I was thrilled
to meet Nancy Willard in Roanoke, VA
once, at the graduate program
in children’s literature.

She sat in on a creative writing seminar
I enjoyed so much, led by
Han Nolan. She was available to us –
we were all big fans. I treasure the moon she drew
in my copy of NIGHTGOWN OF THE SULLEN MOON.

When she learned that my thesis
for Hollins University included
serious poems about bears in history, she
suggested I look up the work of her poet
friend, Galway Kinnell.
Reading him was rough work, but it helped me.
In expectation of my editing & layout of a
chapbook of bear poems, experiences &
images, I feel fortunate to have been
touched by Nancy Willard’s
magical presence that summer.

I’ve previously mentioned her books here.
and also here, where I shared her signature artwork
a gift that graces books of many admirers.

And I think NW would have liked the recent honor that LBH earned in my state.

“Ballet slippers and saxophones:” #Lee Bennett Hopkins

Kwame Alexander
When I was 2 my mom read me poems by #NikkiGiovanni & #LeeBennettHopkins. So cool that #TheCrossover has won the LBHopkins Poetry award!”

By Jan Godown Annino

If there is a King of Children’s Poetry in the U. S.
he is Lee Bennett Hopkins (the Queen would be
Jane Yolen.)

Lee Bennett Hopkins, Center Stage, Florida Artists' Hall of Fame  c. 2017 Stephanie Salkin, all rights reserved

Lee Bennett Hopkins, Center Stage, Florida Artists’ Hall of Fame
c. 2017 Stephanie Salkin, all rights reserved

LBH is a world-wide record holder in poetry.
And as young poets can attest, for 25 years
he has become the leader in establishing poetry awards
that lift up the art of poem-making and poem-reading,
to the highest levels.

This poet – and novelist- is also a long time leader in championing diversity of characters and themes in children’s books.

I can not say LBH chose Florida for retirement,
because so many projects are popping
for him. During a small dinner in his honor
with his lifetime partner Charles Egita, at
Paramount Grill, LBH talked of
juggling 60 poets’ work. That is because
in addition to writing his own heartfelt poems,
LBH a supreme anthologist of poetry for children.

So among tempting aromas, I selected
tofu scramble in his honor last week,
the night before
he took the stage with rock stars
Don Felder (The Eagles) ,
Billy Dean and Jim Stafford,
to be inducted
into the Florida Artists’ Hall of Fame.

Move over Ray Charles,
Tennessee Williams,
Zora Neale Hurston
and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, who proceeded
LBH as honorees in the Artists’ Hall of Fame.

Much has already been written and
will be written
about this honor.

Enjoy Robyn Hood Black piece on LBH,
and futurewise, look for a Michelle Henderich Barnes’
report on the Florida
Convening Culture Conference that was
wrapped around the awards event. (Stick with the link to MB
above, for a cuter than candy pix of LBH!)

But let me just say that I felt as if
I was a
mermaid swimming sweetly on Sanibel sands,
among sandcastles made of syllables
and sounds ripe for poem-making,
as a result of being with LBH & his posse.

So now,
I’m back to writing, reading,
critiquing & visiting schools.
(It’s Dr. Seuss week!)

I close with big appreciations to
Secretary of State Ken Detzner and
his posse including Sandy Shaughnessy,
for bestowing the honor, which was
championed by many, including
poets Stephanie Salkin & Jude Mandell

A VIDEO TO NOTE
I do expect to return here with more on
LBH and the award. But first,
visit with this great video record
of the ceremony, which I enjoyed
straight-through as I couldn’t be in the
Gainesville audience,
scooting home for scheduled events.
Hint: when you have time, stick with this
Florida Channel memory for the poetic line,
we need ballet slippers and saxophones.”
Did you hear the crowd’s applause?

. . .
WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED
I am still focused on the continued
hate speech in this country.
For my Poetry Friday piece this week, I will again
highlight the resistance anthem, WE SHALL NOT BE MOVED.
But I am happy to provide links on Friday to some
poetry blogs keyed to an exciting March poetry
commemoration,
which I very much look forward to reading.

………..

We are all . . .

The always-informative, often soothing Poetry Friday collection is, collected here this week.

. . .

" We are one Earth"               c. 2017Jan Godown Annino

” We are one Earth” c. 2017Jan Godown Annino


We are one Earth.
We are one People.

We are all immigrants, citizens.
We are all Christian, Hindu, Buddhist.
We are all Jewish, Muslim.
We are all Black, Hispanic, white.
We are all First Nation, Asian.

A long-time spiritual of decades ago that sang out
across this land soothing many, is known as
I Shall Not Be Moved.
It transformed in the U.S. Civil Rights era to
We Shall Not Be Moved.

And it just came into my world,
a most welcome zephyr.

A group of us were invited to stand and sing
this as a protest song of solidarity, in a version
with some words changed for modern times.
We attended this service in response
to vile speech,
sent to a local Jewish temple
and hurtful to us all.

Singing there, a zing zanged
through me.
I felt more uplifted than
I had in months.

We Shall Not Be Moved keeps company with me.
Here it is, with my 2017 tweaks. 

2017 Edition, We Shall Not Be Moved

Will shall not, we shall not be moved.
We shall not, we shall not be moved.

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

Jews and Christians, we shall not be moved.
Jews and Christians, we shall not be moved.

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

Hindus and Muslims, we shall not be moved.
Hindus and Muslims, we shall not be moved.

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

Immigrants, citizens, we shall not be moved.
Immigrants, citizens, we shall not be moved

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

Black and white, we shall not be moved.
Black and white, we shall not be moved.

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

Hispanic, Asian, First Nation, we shall not be moved.
Hispanic, Asian, Firsr Nation, we shall not be moved.

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

Gay, straight, trans, we shall not be moved.
Gay, straight, trans, we shall not be moved.

Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

O YES! Like a tree, growing by the waterside,
We shall not be moved.

©2017 Jan Godown Annino

This is shared with a huge heart of appreciation
to my husband’s former students, the ones who
kindly invited us to the service.
They are long-time consumer activist-attorneys,
David and Barbara Abrams. The Florida Supreme Court
recently honored David Abrams for his generous
public spirit. And he is quick to note that
his law partner, and partner in life, Barbara Abrams,
is why he is able to give so much time to the community.

For more on the original I Shall Not Be Moved.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Shall_Not_Be_Moved

To catch the tune, listen here.

A book, a month of books

I am fortunate to be part of today’s crew at
POETRY FRIDAY.

This week I completed THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD
by Colson Whitehead, whose many honors for
bringing the main character, Cora, and her mother,
Mabel, to us, include
the 2016 National Book Award.

“The world may be mean, but people
don’t have to be, not if they refuse.”


– Mabel The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead

I cried through much of it, especially at the end.
The author combines history and his own magical realism.
With those tools, he giftedly presents powerful suggestions
about the physical and emotional torture of the
enslavement business that are visceral and I flinched.
It is a swift thing to convict in our minds the U.S. businessmen and women who perpetuated imprisonment and brutality upon children, women and men.
THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD also delivers us to others
whose complicity must also be remembered and discussed.
The author’s ultimate gift is a fiercely independent young
woman whose spirit will not be squelched. At an imagined
museum in South Carolina, a temporarily-free Cora plays
parts in three different time-period dioramas of black history.
It gave me chills to see her assignment. I made an air-first
as Cora figures out how to get back at gawking white visitors.

Teachers should read this novel; it will be good to see how
it informs both history and literature classes,
for more mature students.
It may also be widely available on television.

This is a 2016 NPR interview with Colson Whitehead

. . .
Although any day of the year is an important time
to learn about more
titles on the black experience, here are some links,
in celebration of
February, Black History Month.

The Brown Bookshelf

Debut author Leah Henderson

I enjoyed meeting author Leah Henderson at a workshop
and think you will want to follow this talented
thinker as her writing career expands.

Poetry for Children
This site, above, created by children’s literature/poetry specialist Sylvia Vardell,
who I hope to meed some day as many of you have, features a link
to SoundCloud posts of poems on various aspects of the black experience. the-underground-railroad<

Thankful

So, we do appreciate the people who have our backs.

In history, the people, including children, who stood up against Hitler & the Nazis are appreciated in books such as Scholastic’s HEROES OF THE HOLOCAUST. Sometimes it was just a cup of tea and food smuggled to a sickly child. What makes their book for young readers especially potent is that their
stories of bravery are all about acts of resistance undertaken by teenagers in Europe during World War II.

 img_5486

Allan Zullo and Mara Bovsun’s book remembers greater-than-a- cuppa-tea actions. The bravery of severe resistance, the acting of deceptive roles in the face of likely arrest, torture & death.

Leading the memorialization of the good people who had the backs of Jews & others’ Hitler targeted is the group, Yad Vashem education center & memorial keeps the flame of memory burning.
The link above is to one of many pages there.
It is especially noteworthy in these times, because the page I selected, honors Muslim Rescuers of Jewish people.

Today is Poetry Friday and also Holocaust Remembrance Day.
The poem of Martin Niemoller is one that many of us studied in school.

“First They Came For The Jews”

by Martin Niemoller

First they came for the Jews
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for the Communists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a Communist.

Then they came for the trade unionists
and I did not speak out
because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for me
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.

You may also want to learn about the brave IRENA SENDER. Whose feats
are documented in at least two books for students.
http://www.irenasendler.org/facts-about-irena/

Please visit a publisher with important titles, consistently, for young readers & educators, on the Holocaust.

Re-DISCOVERED: Tom Lehrer

This week I didn’t read one of the books that I did actually
share in the Kindergarten class where I volunteer.
Instead I sang it.
WAKING UP IS HARD TO DO, a song from Neil Sedaka, is
a perker-upper in crayon colors illustrated by Daniel Miyares.
It comes with a bonus for me here in Florida; the main character is
an alligator who has to get to school.
The kids didn’t care that I’m not a professional singer. They joined
in, too & we croaked together though a lively time.

In a writer’s illogical way, the success with that for story time,
led me to look online at clips of Shari Lewis
and Lamb Chops singing,
then onto clips of comic Soupy Sales’ crazy old kid’s TV show,
and then I found the brilliant math professor-satirist
Tom Lehrer,
liberal lyricist of the 1960s.

As of 2015 in his 80s, Mr. Lehrer lived quietly, as he apparently
fervently wishes, according to sources I won’t cite.
I wish him his desired anonymity in this crazy world,
great good healthy days & alligator-sized
appreciation for the joy that listening to his songs
brought me on Inauguration Day. I suspect
they will now be a comfort through the weekend & beyond.

Here are some Tom Leher lines about the lip-service paid to unity:

But during National Brotherhood Week
National Brotherhood Week
It’s National Everyone-Smile-At-
One-Another-hood Week
Be nice to people who
Are inferior to you
It’s only for a week, so have no fear
Be grateful that it doesn’t last all year!

c. Tom Lehrer, all rights reserved

I know your kindness and good will lasts
all year & as the first month winds down
in this strange new year, I appreciate more than ever
this nourishing nest of Poetry Friday readers & writers.

In case you want to visit with Tom Lehrer.

Hello, 2017!

Catching up, with pleasure

Whew!
When I was a wee one, my Father would sometimes say,
“That’s been a year this week,” after oodles of stuff
had whizzed through our life in short space.

I feel that way now.
I’m jumping back here to post about a lovely new book.
To be specific, it’s a lovey book: LUCY’S LOVEY.

unknown

This delight is a debut picture book from Betsy Devany, a creative spirit who, when she is not writing,
spends every work day with a flock of toys. Art from Redwall illustrator
Christopher Denise brings the adventures of little Lucy & her missing lovey, to life.

Betsy’s inventive story is page-turning prose as a mystery unfolds.
Since much about poetry is on mind, I collected a found poem
from LUCY’S LOVEY.

Only Some of Lucy’s Babies

Fancy
Tiny
Minky

Humongous
Flat
Burper

Squeaky
Sparkly
Bubba

Since you will want to know more, here is a way to meet Betsy online.

I go back to reading in the school where I volunteer soon
and LUCY’S LOVEY is already packed for the visit

New Year’s Poetry Post Card Exchange

I have received lovely cards & original poems.
I want to post images after I complete my small stack
& send them off. (By January 23rd, the Chinese N.Y.)
More appreciations to the exchange originator.
And to the poem makers who sent them to me.

Law Advocate Students Rule!
I was in San Francisco on New Year’s Day. But I live in Florida.
That was quite a hop for us, and so it was wonderful to travel there to acknowledge students of FSU Law School. The lawyers-in-training work with my dear husband, Paolo Annino. In only one example of student power, their consistent
advocacy for children who were blatantly placed incorrectly in nursing homes in Florida,
due to wrongheaded political policy, has resulted in the Father Robert Drinan award. This was awarded in S.F. and I felt so honored to see my husband accept it on their behalf.

Accepting the Father Robert Drinan Law Award, Prof. Paolo G. Annino

Accepting the Father Robert Drinan Law Award, Prof. Paolo G. Annino

(And yes, the law students sprung the kiddos from nursing homes.)

If you know of folks considering an advocacy career, at any age,
law is a supremely kick-butt, effective area.
I believe there is no better training ground for feet-first
experience than the FSU College of Law Public Interest Law Center.

Girlfriends Rule!
In addition to our moveable Christmas drive from Tallahassee to Daytona Beach
to be with our 95-year-old & 85-year-old Elders (my hubby’s dear parents),
to returning home to fly to San Francisco (sunny days, before the rains!)
I landed, repacked & hit the roads to squeeze in a visit by myself with dear gal
pals Terry & Weida, in two different Florida cities. We did the selfie thing &
the catching up thing. What a bonus good ending, to a feel good string of holiday days.

c.2017JanGodownAnnino, all rights reserved

c.2017JanGodownAnnino, all rights reserved

c.2017JanGodownAnnino,  all rights reserved

c.2017JanGodownAnnino,
all rights reserved

Poetry Friday Regales!

Poetry Friday is a visit from your Hygge (cozy) place with a community of poetry readers & poetry writers.
This week, until next Friday, it is candle-lit at Keri Recommends. Thank you, Keri!

Sicily in Florida

Some days of December I am posting
at the lovely invitation of peaceful
Mary Lee Hahn (who is doing this every day!)
#haikuforhealing.
I hope these short meditations are as soothing
to you as they are to me.

Homemade

Spinach sausage sweets
Nella’s Sicilian kitchen
Love lucious loaves
c.2016 JanGodownAnnino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

A Year of Reading Invites Haiku

Why hello there & welcome to Bookseedstudio’s blog.
It’s a poetry day here.

Also, please visit the
Poetry Friday collection curated this week by
thoughtful Jone at Check it Out.

Again,
I’m responding to the peaceable invitation of
Mary Lee at a Year of Reading to
think of Haiku for Healing in December.
What a soothing thought this is, just thinking of
her idea.
………………………….
Dec. 13, 2015 #haikuforhealing

Homemade

Spinach sausage sweets
Love lucious loaves
Nella’s Sicilian kitchen
c.2016 JanGodownAnnino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c.2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

c. 2016 Nella Annino

……………………………
December 9,2016 #haikuforhealing

Manatee
Above spring surface
Unexpected sparkle spout
Manatee breathes
c. 2016 JanGodownAnnino

C. 2016JanGodownAnnino, all rights reserved

C. 2016JanGodownAnnino,
all rights reserved

Dec 8, 2016 #haikufor healing
Spinach
Frog-green baby moons
grow round by the kitchen door
love delicious discs
c. 2016 JanGodownAnnino

C.2016JanGodownAnnino, all rights reserved

C.2016JanGodownAnnino,
all rights reserved

We chanced upon several manatees at our national treasure, Wakulla Springs last month during a Thanksgiving vacation visit. I’m tickled that for the first time my little red Canon camera is permanent witness to an exhale of one manatee’s breath.

My dear hubby planted a spinach new to us & how sweet & cute, it is!

I hope you are well & that
you are writing well, reading well.
And, appreciations to A Year of Reading!

#IAMTHANKFUL

The best antidote to the anxieties and disasters of life is laughter,
and this children seem to understand as soon as they are born.

Iona and Peter Opie: I Saw Esau

#IAMTHANKFUL 1
It is close to the end of November.
And despite the fact that our beloved Obamas will leave
The White House in January, I am joyful in the fact that locally,
Tallahassee progressive people whose careers our family are
fortunate to know up close, are now newly-minted elected leaders.
It’s not easy serving a community 24/7 but I know they are
enthusiastic about their tasks & will be a boost to community
well-being.
Local, local, local is the way to build up community.
Isn’t this how President Obama & Michelle Obama
first stepped out?
Since all of these local leaders worked vigorously with our
area’s children before finding elective office, it’s exciting for
our area’s young adults who knew them in their child years, to
be hopeful that you can Grow the Good.

#IAMTHANKFUL 2
I was asked by a poetry pal, Michelle, creator of the nourishing blog,
Today’s Little Ditty,

to post my written response, remembering a place of solace.
I am thankful to my parents for much, but especially for the ways
they helped me appreciate the gifts of nature, such as the shore.

C.2016JanGodownAnnino Florida gulf shore

C.2016JanGodownAnnino
Florida gulf shore

Walking the edge
by J.G. Annino

of land
at the lapping Gulf
on a melon curve of sand,
sandpipers escape curls of water.

I stop to receive a wave,
be a slow sea snail.
A ripple washes salted wrack ashore,
taps my ankle bone
lays a green ribbon down.

On a sieve of Sarasota sand
Dad unpacked
to fish from shore
Mom unpacked
to read in a curve of sand.

I toyed with the playground,
ate from the hot dog pavilion,
tossed bread to gulls,
sought digging children,
did not listen to the water song.

This day I breathe the sea rhyme,
see it swipe a shelf of sand,
feel it dissolve trouble from the day,
whoosh, whoosh,
whoosh, whoosh.
C.2016JanGodownAnnino

Joy Month

Joy Month

(If you seek Poetry Friday links – & if you’ve landed here, I’m hopeful you’ll want too, please visit with Laura.)

This may be an only post in my busy, 2nd-favorite month of the year.
I am thankful for so much, including your visits &
comments here through the year.

img_5948

Before a light flight
by J.G. Annino

A silk garland
small patches
yellow, orange, black, white
lifting
falling,
a fluttering
shimmer
of poured sunshine.

c.2016JanGodownAnnino

Every year near here butterflies arrive to gorge on fuel.
Then they lift up to the sky for fall migration over the
gaping wide Gulf of Mexico.

To witness this feeding, as my husband & I did again recently,
always feels like a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

c.2016JanGodownAnnino

c.2016JanGodownAnnino


Because this seasonal sight is so close to Thanksgiving,
it always helps me imagine the even more abundant sights of Nature,
that once were here & everywhere in this
Hemisphere as experienced by Native Americans/American Indians
hundreds of years ago.

In the upcoming holiday of Thanksgiving,
depictions of the Native families who farmed, fished, hunted
and lived in villages or on the move,
people who made art and clothing,
medicine and toys,
can be shared in well-meaning
but uninformed Thanksgiving ways.

Because I waited for years for someone in the
Seminole Tribe of Florida to write a book for children
about the astounding matriarch leader, Betty Mae Tiger Jumper,
before doing so myself, I am asked about resources
for families, schools, community youth groups & libraries.
If you have a similar interest here are starting places:

American Indians in Children’s Literature

OYATE

National Museum of the American Indian

I also find these books to be helpful.
Any title by Joseph Bruchac

FATTY LEGS by Christy Jordan-Fenton & Margaret Pokiak-Fentonwith artwork from Liz Amini-holmes True story of an 8-year-old child.

A NATIVE AMERICAN THOUGHT OF IT by Rocky Landon with illustrations by David MacDonald

DO ALL INDIANS LIVE IN TIPIS? Questions & Answers from the National Museum of the American Indian
ENCOUNTER by Jane Yolen, illustrations by David Shannon

c.2016JanGodownAnnino

c.2016JanGodownAnnino


Happy Native American Heritage Month/November
Happy Thanksgiving/November
Happy National Novel Writing Month/November

Bookseedstudio

c.2016A.Ghoul c.2016A.Ghoul

Halloween 2016

In the night arena waiting in seats,
we are two who dare

peer at beings that materalize
from their shadowy lair
Shambling they ramble, roaming a slow pace
Quaking, we steadfastly keep our place
It selects us from the brave at hand for ghoulish festivities the night suggests
Shaking we pretend this is a jest
Now from behind our seats . . .
c.2016A.Zomb.E c.2016A.Zomb.E

View original post

October, with Barbara Juster Esbensen

I hope you enjoy this verse
from the poem, “October Alchemy,”
by Barbara Juster Esbensen.

She is one of my favorite poets who I learn from,
especially through her guiding,
A CELEBRATION OF BEES:
Helping Children Write Poetry.

October Alchemy
By Barbara Juster Esbensen

Wind runs howling,
Rain slants cold;
Elm leaves pave
The streets with gold.

c.1963BarbaraJusterEsbensen,
in SWING AROUND THE SUN (2003)
……..

Family in New England jump for joy when June arrives.
I know someone who dotes on December.
My month is October.

As Barbara Juster Esbensen says,
it’s golden.

I opened the door to the dark this morning
& this very first day
of my month rewarded me
with a crisp embrace.

Love Cups, by Anna Maria Annino

Love Cups, by Anna Maria Annino


Unplanned,
now today is the morning I
carefully picked up our
summer-idled
Love Cups. They were created in New England, then
surprise-gifted to us
by the hard-working multi-media artist
in our family, Anna, a brand-new law
student.
Our heart-handled sips
(organic coffee, my husband)
(chai green tea with licorice tea, me)
taste better in these gorgeous cups,
if the morning ranges from cool
to freezing. (North Florida can freeze.)

October 1 is also when I
delight in a return
to crafty ways.

c.2016JanGodownAnnino

c.2016JanGodownAnnino

TODAY
is the first day
of the rest
of my best
month.

Lee Bennett Hopkins, please

Poetry Friday percolates perfectly at READING TO THE CORE this week.

It is a good week at Bookseedstudio.
With permission from generous educator and poet,
Lee Bennett Hopkins,
some of his words on poetry are here today.

Also gathered today are
three recent poetry links,
important to me. They appear after
the words from LBH.

Lee Bennett Hopkins, briefly, on the Poet, on Poetry

A poet is, in the narrowest sense, a maker of verses.
A poet is also imaginative in thought, expressive in
language, and graceful in form.

Good poetry is imaginative. It deals with emotion and has
significance beyond the act of creation. It uses figurative
language, yet is compact in thought and expression. Good
poetry has an element of beauty and truth which appears
unstable outside of the poem.

Poetry both predates and transcends the written word.
It is the rhythmic expression of imaginative thoughts
about our world and its people. –
Lee Bennett Hopkins

I will dwell with those thoughts this weekend.

The awards for the winner and honor books
in the 2016 Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award for Children
were given this week at Penn State.
The Honor Books are
MY SENECA VILLAGE by Marilyn Nelson
HYPNOTIZE A TIGER by Calef Brown
with Winner,
ENCHANTED AIR by magical poet Margarita Engle.
These winning titles shine like moonbeams on my reading list.

551763_3185685260838_1433051237_n

Three links, promised above, are

A Sept. 19, 2016 online celebration of LBH,
where he shares a bit about his 2017
title due from Lee & Low.

A septercet poem, attempted. The
septercet is a classy form
originated by wondrous Jane Yolen.

An explainer of the septercet form,
as covered at TODAY’s LITTLE DITTY,
treasured blog that is celebrating
septercet creator Jane Yolen
this very month. Look sharp,
the septercet challenge is offered
near the end of the informative
post.

This very week here in Florida,
I presented assemblies
to about 80 attentive
4th graders & also to their pals,
about 100 attentive 5th graders.
I snuck in a little poetry appreciation,
too, although the talk was about
non-fiction research
& writing, of the
non-poetry flavor.

Finally, here I am back at Poetry Friday.
Yes, a good week.

img_5463

A pantoum: Read a spell

Read a Spell
By J.G. Annino

c. 2016 Jan Godown Annino "Foreign Language Edition"

c. 2016 Jan Godown Annino
“Foreign Language Edition”


You want to escape into a good book.

When they call your name, don’t answer.

Begin where you left off.

A side patio may be the right place to read.

When they call your name, don’t answer.

Some sly books can hide inside a jacket.

The laundry room is often good for one chapter.

Be prepared to say it is school work.

A jacket pocket may hold it.

It is right to enjoy a book for pleasure.

Be prepared to say it for a test.

Their entertainment makes your head spin.

It is your right to enjoy any book.

Offer to read a chapter out loud.

Their entertainment makes your head spin.

They lack something you have.

Offer to read a chapter out loud.

Begin where you left off.

They lack something you have.

You escaped into a good book.

2016 Jan Godown Annino

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino "Fulham Palace Book Cat"

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino
“Fulham Palace Book Cat”


……………..

10 Good Things After Hurricane Hermine

10 Good Things After Hurricane Hermine
(arrived Sept. 2, 2016)
by J.G. Annino

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

10 Unlimited chocolates.

9 First butterfly seen, after.

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

8 Early to bed.

7 Unlimited reading.

6 Utility bill (pool pump, garage-door automatic opener, A/C + device use) will plummet.

5 Candlelight.

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

4 New poems + other writing (#amwritng.)

3 So many helpers.

2 Hand-written notes/cards/letters accomplished.

1 Unscathed by Hermine.

~ jga

Although we are without electric power as I post this,
our experience with Hurricane Hermine was a breeze.
Hurricane season lasts through October; this was our first
brush with a hurricane in 2016. The damage picture is
a current scene at the entrance to our street & not our
house. We count our blessings.

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

c.2016 Jan Godown Annino

ISLAND’S END by Padma Venkatraman

(Heidi, at My Juicy Little Universe, squeezes flavors on Poetry Friday this week.)

Island’s End, a novel from
Padma Venkatraman

This spring through a workshop,
I learned about a novel from poet &
award-winning novelist Padma Venkatraman.
Although this post isn’t about her novel-in-verse,
A TIME TO DANCE, which I expect to
bring to a post later,
I hope you will like beginning to know her works.
And if you already found her, I’m glad we share
appreciation for Padma (also known as T V Padma)

ISLAND’S END by Padma Venkatraman

This contemporary-set novel welcomed me to
meet a hunter-gatherer tribe, lead by the elder,
Lah-ame.
I became pulled into their ways. The characters
& the setting feel so real, I would welcome a
story about their earlier years, leading up to the
time that we meet the communal villagers.

ISLAND's END by Padma Venkatram, Penguin Young Readers Group

ISLAND’s END by Padma Venkatram, Penguin Young Readers Group

Ideal Readers of this book, look for stories involving:

Nature
Back country camping
Self-sufficient subsistence societies
Coastal-set stories
Girl leaders
Little brothers/families
First Peoples
Love

The story line
Lah-ame, the tribal family’s longtime & wise male
leader, and the main character, Uido, the chosen new leader,
a young woman, are faced with an intrusion of outsiders
coveting wood of fabulous trees, set in contemporary times.

Favorite line
“Maya covers her face with her hands, as though tears
are something to be ashamed of. I put my arms around
her, but she does not sob.”
(about a visiting outsider, Maya, who doesn’t want to harm
the people or resources of the isolated island)

Favorite scene
If I say, I’ll be sharing a key plot element, but
the rituals & traditions of the tribe call out
to my inner-anthropologist self.

Book bonus 1
Pitcher plants! Seasonal pitcher plant bogs grace
the wild part of our North Florida world; I can’t
remember when I’ve found these unusual plants
to be an important feature of a
beautiful novel the way they are here.

Book bonus 2
Inspired by a writing prompt shared at
Reflections on the Teche by Poetry Friday’s
Margaret Simon,
I selected words that feel charged, played with them
& offer this found poem,
inspired by ISLAND’S END:

Water slurps
by Jan Annino

Healer
Drumbeat
Dreams

Healer prays
Apprentice prays

Drongo bird*
Crocodile
Monitor lizard

Turtle fat
Bear skin
Beeswax glue

Healer prays
Apprentice prays

Cliff
Beach
Reef

Healer prays
Apprentice prays

~ Jan Annino

*Drongo bird

Book bonus # 3
The author’s oceanography career before publishing novels
sailed her to many places, including islands off India.
In learning that some island groups inexplicably avoided
harm from the disastrous 2004 tsunami, she found a
story route into how that could be.

For more on Padma Venkatraman, author of
CLIMBING THE STAIRS
ISLAND’S END
A TIME TO DANCE

The Nerdy Book Club

Padma Venkatraman’s website

Meet Padma at these places:
James River Writers Conference 2016

Highlights Foundation, 2017

Pete’s Dragon, August 2016 movie

Pete’s Dragon, yes!

 

 

The whys:

I left the movie wanting to
climb a tree.

A key part of the plot is that
a child reads & rereads & rereads….
a specific picture book that is very important to him.

Music & lyrics sound as if they are
from a mighty fine acoustical concert.

Legends & myths are some of my
favorite literary tropes.

Respect for imagination, forests & loyalty that is deserving, are to be appreciated.

The child actor, Oakes Fegley, is exceptional.

51TLfMvP4wL._SY400_BO1,204,203,200_

So, too are the special effects to make
the facial expressions of Elliot (the dragon)
seem real.

All the key actors are quite spiffy in
their roles. It’s cool to see
Robert Redford comfortable in his
good-lookin’ older guy skin as a
neighborhood storyteller.

Wood whittling. Not a lot, so get there
on time.

I award a nest of green pixie dust
to the creative maker, David Lowery. Bravo!

This was a movie I was too busy to see.
But when I read this  USA TODAY feature, I was motivated to get myself into the theater.

 

Dr. Carla D. Hayden, welcome!

    I am interrupting a blog break for a special announcement.

(But first – please know that this week perky Poetry Friday is beautifully shelved,
here at Books4Learning.)..

This week news arrived of a dynamic, digital-sharp, new
Library of Congress head Librarian, for the decade hence.

Her name is Dr. Carla Diane Hayden.

I must skip to the most important morsel about her
– for me –
she was born in Tallahassee, my town.
Now follows a poem, only after some significant
skinny about our new Librarian of Congress, first —-

* Book she read over and over as a child, Bright April, by Margurite
De Angeli.

1941880

* Well-liked leader in Chicago at that huge public library system.

* One bold year spent at the helm of the American Library Association.

* Innovative leader in Baltimore, where she leaves colleagues sad
at her departure from the historic Enoch Pratt Free Library System.

During riots last year in Baltimore, Dr. Hayden earned praise because
she kept the main library open although it was close “to the epicenter
of unrest.” When so much was shuttered, Dr. Hayden felt that
peaceable folks deserved a safe public haven. According to many
reports, the library became that, not only for reading, but also
offering a place to receive food and to meet other needs.
Here is a video that speaks to those moments, & others.

President Obama’s nomination of Dr. Hayden was challenged.
Despite full clarification of some important questions that
should have satisfied all.

And this week, 18 senators still voted
against this illustrious candidate.
Fortunately the bi-partisan majority ruled.
She is especially needed immediately because of several
reports indicating that the LOC is woefully & perhaps threateningly
for some of the public’s collection, behind in many aspects of librarianship
in the digital age.
See the state-by-state vote (& three who didn’t vote) here.

In Honor of Dr. Hayden, newly of the LOC
By Jan Godown Annino

May you find time to read.
From Bright April, to I Almost Forgot About You,
time to read books
may be
miniscule. (The Flag of Childhood is quick to dip in and out of.)

May you find a windowed nest.
From Georgetown to Capitol Hill,
finding a D.C. condo, like yours in Baltimore,
may be
challenging. (Try Brookland.)

May you ignore racist, sexist remarks.
From the Old South to Badlands survivalists,
bleeping, blocking & (privately) booing
those uglies can be
fun. (They hope for a book contract.)

May you be appreciated.
At office bookshelves and home library stacks,
please know that most real readers are
glad you are
#1 at the LOC. (About time!)

May you visit Tallahassee.
From the Meek-Eaton Black Archives at FAMU, to the Mayor’s office,
it’s a whole new town
than how things before,
went down. (In 1952.)

– c.jga

Unknown

Salty summer with Langston Hughes & Ashley Bryan

Poetry Friday’s weekend picnic is collected by Tabatha!!!

Today, my little corner of the blogosphere
washes ashore with
a picture book poetry collection and artwork
that may make you sail fast,
to the nearest beach.

On a recent humid, landlocked night at the library,
I hooked into the splashy, floaty cover of SAIL AWAY.

This bounty is a group of poems by Langston Hughes,
with art
from puppet maker, painter, creative wizard,
Ashley Bryan.

SAIL AWAY  cover artwork  c. Ashley Bryan,  poems c. Langston Hughes

SAIL AWAY
cover artwork
c. Ashley Bryan,
poems c. Langston Hughes


Many readers know that Mr. Bryan is a long-time,
year-round dweller of an island off the coast of Maine.
His artwork collage compositions for this collection
are rolling, liquid beauties.
(A surprise on the endpapers reflects his love of his Mother, is all I will say about his process for this book.)

Not many of us – me included – are familiar
with the years that the late, great, Mr. Hughes
labored as a seaman.
This book tells us that his appreciation of the
salt life stems from jobs he landed on ships and boats
in Europe and Africa.

Long Trip
by Langston Hughes

“…We dip and dive,
Rise and roll,
Hide and are hidden
On the sea….”

lines from “Long Trip”
c.Langston Hughes

My first editor in the news bureau where I worked
upon college graduation was also a licensed
U.S. Coast Guard Captain.
Capt. Mike, who was as gentle a wordsmith
& boatsmith as you could find, would
understand those lines.

The seas become inscrutably flat at
times, which is how our family likes it
when we pop up a big umbrella at the shore.
But who knows what flat water covers?

Sea Calm
by Langston Hughes

“How still
How strangely still
The water is today.
It is not good
For water
To be so still that way.”
c.Langston Hughes

I hope you can ship off to your favorite pond, lake,
creek, river, bay, ocean, or backyard kiddie pool,
with Capt. Hughes & Capt. Bryan.
I’d like to give a basket of tumbled-in-surf, St. George
Island, Florida, shells to the brilliant publishing team that
hauled this catch ashore for the world to sing.

For more on Ashley Bryan, I found an important
interview from The Horn Book, with details about
SAIL AWAY.
http://www.hbook.com/2015/08/talks-with-roger/ashley-bryan-talks-with-roger/#_

Of the many online resources about Langston Hughes, I think this
one from Howard University Library is especially wonderful.
http://www.howard.edu/library/reference/guides/hughes/

And I hope you swim back here, likely sometime
in August, after this blog returns from break.

Oyster Boat c. JanGodownAnnino

Oyster Boat c. JanGodownAnnino

A visit with Irene Latham

Happy summer! The very helpful Diane is herding haiku folks &
other poetry people into the weekly partee known as Poetry Friday.

A visit with Irene Latham

I have twice bumped into Alabama-based author
Irene Latham.
We exchanged grins at a cozy SCBWI Southern
Breeze workshop. Then months later, we appreciated
the airy space of The Bookshelf, a friendly emporium
in a Georgia village.

Irene Latham P.B. Shelf (with approving elephant) The Bookshelf, Thomasville, GA  c. 2016 JanGodownAnnino

Irene Latham P.B. Shelf (with approving elephant) The Bookshelf, Thomasville, GA
c. 2016 JanGodownAnnino

All my moments with this often-traveling, award-winning poet,
novelist & picture book author give me the feeling that
I want to be a calmer & kinder person & a much more
creative writer. No wonder I’m craving an Irene Latham fix. 

I left a trail of peanuts, in hopes of enticing this
elephant-loving woman into the Bookseedstudio studio.
The snacks worked. We are today’s exclusive site for,
A visit with Irene Latham.

Q.  
Peanuts or popcorn?

I can’t pick… enjoy them both! Especially if there’s
chocolate involved…

Q.  
 Book wrangling. Keep them in a tall, narrow bookcase? A
short, fold-up bookstair? Alphabetized by author?  How do
you tame your home/office library?

I have books in every room of the house — but I try really
hard to keep only the books to which I have strong attachments.
(Books are meant to be read, not collecting dust on a shelf!) I don’t
do alphabetical, though it sure would make things easier to find! I
tend to group according to emotional impact. I do have several
bookshelves devoted to only children’s literature.

Q.  
Background sounds. What is your writing zone playlist?
Is silence when you write, golden?

Silence is my sound of choice. Or birdsong.

Q.  
We are visiting Birmingham, your town. 
What are 3 places you’d take us to?

Vulcan at night,
Johnny’s in Homewood for the best
upscale meat-n-three you will ever eat,
and Reed Books.
And then there’s the Civil Rights Museum, Railroad Park,
Birmingham Museum of Art, the Botanical Gardens,
our fabulous zoo… 

Q.  
Please finish the sentence. A map is…

. . . unnecessary.
Let the journey guide you, not the map! (I actually love maps
and am learning some of the best things ever are found when
you put the map away.)

Q.  
If your name weren’t Irene, it would be…

. . . Hannah. (I am named after my great-grandmother,
Hannah Irene.)

Q.  
If writing weren’t your work, it would be… ?

My husband and I love to travel and love to EAT, so
maybe together we’d host a TV travel show? 
 
Q.  
What should children’s writers ask
themselves when they start a new project? 

Am I having fun? Am I delighted?
Does this story fill me with wonder and joy?

Irene Latham with young friends, The Bookshelf, Thomasville, GA

Irene Latham with young friends, The Bookshelf, Thomasville, GA

Appreciations
to Irene for these fun thoughts. You can glean a fine dollop of
poem-making tips & shake paws with the elephant-loving
Irene Latham at these fresh & delicious 2016 events: 

Alabama Writers Conclave (Birmingham, AL) – July 15-17
Mississippi Book Festival (Jackson, MS) – August 20 
Poetry Camp (Bellingham, WA) – October 1
SCBWI Writing & Illustrating for Kids (Birmingham, AL) – October 8
Louisiana Book Festival (Baton Rouge, LA) – October 29
NCTE (Atlanta, GA) – November 17-20

ALSO
you will not want to miss, coming to a bookshelf near you
(sooner or later) this hard-working poet’s way with words in:
IT’S NOT BLACK AND WHITE
(poetry picture book, co-authored with Charles Waters)
FRANK AND MISS FANCY
(historical fiction picture book)
POP, BAM, BOOM!
(poetry picture book)
THE OCTOPUS POSTCARDS
(nonfiction picture book)

FOR
more juicy details visit www.irenelatham.com

AND
if you have’t already, read these Irene Latham books
find them fast:
FRESH DELICIOUS
DEAR WANDERING WILDEBEEST
WHEN SHE SUN SHINES ON ANTARCTICA<
/>

LEAVING GEE’S BEND
DON’T FEED THE BOY


THE COLOR OF LOST ROOMS
THE SKY BETWEEN US
WHAT CAME BEFORE <
/>

Here is a little Irene Lantham poem-in-progress,
about Irene,
but certainly not BY Irene.

Brave Irene

Deep down in
another writer’s desk
dwelled fusty words,
not the best.

Irene swatted the dull things
away. She clapped her paws:
“Walloping crisp verbs,
come in and play.”

A calvacade of tight terms
appeared:
crack
creak

gulp
flick
shine
peel

hammer
squabble
gobble
burble

leap
convene
squint
grimace

Multitudinous words danced
in the now-lively place.
Appreciations extended!
Violets in a vase.

“Tut, tut,” Irene said,
“Good words always lived here.
You just had to banish
that writerly fear.”

-jga

#OrlandoStrong

It is good to see how the world, this country, my state,
& the city that lies four hours south of us – Orlando –
pulls together. Daily there are expressions of love &
comfort, for the families of the June 12, 2016 mass shooting.
One sweet event is a PLANTING PEACE garden just around the corner
from the lovely Henry. P. Leu Gardens on Lake Rowena, with each
fallen person or survivor, honored by a specific colorful
flower planted & later, the garden always cared for, very visible,
in the median of a prominent street.

#OrlandoStrong  c. 2016 Anna Annino

#OrlandoStrong
c. 2016 Anna Annino


We also learn about those who have passed on as their
funerals occur. One story that strikes me is of a mother,
Brenda Lee Marquez McCool. She forced her
21-year-old son to flee for his life, after she was shot.
At his invitation she went with him to dance to lively Latin music.
She did not survive; her son did.

OneOrlando is the fund Mayor Buddy Dyer has created to assist
the families of those killed & also the survivors; some still face
more surgeries & long recovery. It is OneOrlando, P.O. Box 4990,
Orlando, FL 32802-4990.

Passages – Joan Perry Morris

Many researchers work with the resource, American Memory, in the Library of Congress.

A buncha history hunters – Ken Burns, other well-established popular &
academic historians – also seek images from Florida Memory. It is an unparalleled digital library of historic documents with millions of visits, worldwide.

The talented creator, Joan Perry Morris, was a
longtime friend who assisted my mother in the 1970s with
Mom’s research on a local history book about the Fort Myers,
Florida region (Sanibel-Captiva to the beachbound.)
Later I appreciated my turn, in relying on Joan for significant
boosts during Florida newspaper & travel book years, before
I wrote children’s books. Joan was zesty about tracking
down topics & tidbits & served up spot-on ideas for other projects.
As Tropical Storm Colin sogged up our way, Joan Perry Morris was
remembered this past weekend, in North Florida, with both reverence & wit,
by state leaders & by just folks, like us.
We felt fortunate to be invited to share in this special celebration
of her 81 years with us. Love you always, Joanie.

https://www.floridamemory.com/
Find more “In Memoriam,” April 22, 2016 via Latest blog posts
tab, lower right of tabs, or the search button.

The Florida Handbook, one edition of those where Joan invited my chapter contributions.

The Florida Handbook, one edition of those where Joan invited my chapter contributions.

Highlights of Working at Writer’s Wonderland – 2

Favorites from the Workshop – The Work at The Novel-in-Verse Workshop
by Jan Annino

(Seekers of the POETRY FRIDAY round-up, of which this article is a part, are collected by Jone at CHECK IT OUT. https://maclibrary.wordpress.com/)

To cope from withdrawal symptoms
following a Highlights Foundation Workshop
last month, I’m writing about my favorites
from the experience.
In the last post I listed High Five
Favorites from The Tour of The Office.

Favorites from the Workshop – The Work

Work!
A lot of it.
In an ardent
doodle, doodle, idea, idea, scribble, scribble,
sense.

Breakthrough moments
bubbled up,
so I chucked swaths of lines,
retooled others in light of
directions newly imagined.
Terrific progress.

Mornings I awoke to birdsong.
First light filtered in from a wood,
across a red clover field where
a red tractor sat.
A breeze tickled delicate white curtains
against honey blond, paneled, cabin walls.

Each of the perfect-weather mornings,
I grabbed my journal/notebook that wears
an embossed mantra,
“A moment of gratitude makes a difference in attitude.”
It arrived home juicy with impressions,
characters, thoughts, titles, snatches of
dialogue & questions.

I tugged myself away from the cabin’s
spell & went outside early.
Plump robins worked to make a nest
in a beam of my front porch.
Writers also saw Baltimore orioles.
I stopped in my path for the flight
of an indigo bunting.
Bluebirds visited me uncountable times.
And more delight –
chipmunks wove in an out of slate walls near the 5,200 square
foot airy conference center fittingly known as The Barn.

copyright 2016 Joanne R. Fritz, all rights  reserved

copyright 2016
Joanne R. Fritz, all rights
reserved


More Work
Each morning top-drawer authors,
Kathryn Erskine and Alma Fullerton,
guided us with pithy & lively lectures & writing prompts.
They are each of them such
physical presenters, it felt at times as if we
watched theater.
We listened to a potent talk &
enjoyed many conversations with
visiting author Padma Venkatraman,
(A Time to Dance, Island’s End, Climbing the Stairs.)

Afternoons offered time for one-on-one
meetings with the mentors.
Plus, individual writing marathons inside.
Or out, with assistance from previously noted
chipmunks and avians.
Writers found the creek at the bottom of the hill.
It reflected a clearness that guided
thoughts & work.

copyright,  Kathryn Erskine,  all right reserved

copyright,
Kathryn Erskine,
all right reserved


<

By 4 we collected in the living room of The Barn
in a daily group critique
for the brave. Everyone felt brave,
drawn out by the nurturing faculty.
We appreciated the Floyd Cooper art on the walls &
the big sofas holding red pillows emblazoned with the
distinctive H for Highlights, logo.

The nights were usually free for reading,
writing, or discussion. I felt fortunate that an
insightful librarian, also working on historical fiction
like me, asked to share evening work time in The Barn.
Another night we were gifted with visits from City
Folk, an accomplished agent & an esteemed editor.
Such insights, we gleaned. Such access, we appreciated.

Favorite Words of Wisdom
Katherine Erskine, whose books include Mockingbird, Quaking,
The Badger Knight, plus the forthcoming, Mama Africa:

All of your stories will make wonderful books.

Imagine an elaborate line-up of dominoes that you will be setting off, in touching
the first one. Each domino must connect. Each scene must connect with the next.

Keep in mind who is the antagonist. Who is the battle against.

Alma Fullerton, whose books include In The Garage, Libertad, Burn
& the forthcoming, 50 Lashes:

Don’t sacrifice story for poetic form.

My first draft is basically barfing on the paper.

The evil person can be even nastier if we don’t see him/him from
his point of view, but when we view that antagonist from the outside.

Bonus Staff
The kind & funny chef staff (hello there, Marcia,
Amanda, Megan, Derrick & a spot-on walk-on, Kent!) matched
the quality of the story-crafting faculty. And their treats are
missed (hello there, toasted kale appetizer, mushroom loaf,
stuffed peppers, cream of squash soup, rhubarb crunch,
grilled asparagus, local cheeses, et. al!)

In Summary
Pages were required with the application;
this varies workshop to workshop. We 12 brought
library or teaching or children’s bookselling or publishing
tales with us. Students traveled from as far as Idaho, and as
next-door as N.J. and PA.
We grew close to each other, in sharing about our novel-in-verse
(one biography-in-verse) projects.
I’m anticipating news in the months ahead about terrific progress.
I’ve already brought fresh work to an at-home writing partner
at the library last night.

To Be Continued
How cool it is to be collected in an online group by our
spiffy librarian techie, my sharp critique partner
that night, to continue the journey begun at Highlights.
Appreciations to all.
With extra thanks to Kathryn Erskine & Joanne Fritz for
sharing the photos for this article. My 125 images
I took in the 5 days didn’t make it home, but
that’s another Story.

Highlights of Working at Writer’s Wonderland – 1

Highlights of Working at a Writer’s Wonderland – The Tour
by Jan Annino

I write this blog article as a coping mechanism
to soothe withdrawal, from leaving
a Writer’s Wonderland.

Last month I attended my first Highlights Foundation
Workshop for Children’s and Illustrators. A two-word
writing results summary is – terrific progress.
I hope the days there aren’t my last visit to the Highlights
nirvana for writers, editors, and illustrators.

Here today, from the recent Highlights Foundation
Workshop for writers of novels-in-verse, are my High Fives
about The Tour. Tomorrow’s blog article is about The Workshop.

The Tour
My High Five Favorites at the Office – The Tour

images-2
Highlights logo is cheerily emblazoned on scattered carpets.

images-1
A giant skull sits in the editor-in-chief’s office (ask about it on
tour.)
images-2
Magazine editors work in an historic downtown former mayor’s home,
a building accented with high ceilings, big, built-in
bookcases, and tall windows.
images-3

Editor name plates are old Scrabble tile holders that display the
wood letters spelling first names. (Hello Joelle, Channing & everyone!)
images-4
All on the magazine staff answer mail from children; every piece of
child mail is answered.

Finally, my heart also melted when I saw that books created by
book friends (Lee Bennett Hopkins, Lisa Desimini, Irene Latham)
are so handy for reference.

Okay, so I gave you one more – that makes six. The Highlights
folks like to overdeliver and I feel we all carried that spirit
away with us.

I hope you can visit this blog again; tomorrow I expect to post High Five Favorites from the Workshop – The Work.

(printablenumbers.org a resource for educators, is much appreciated
for today’s numbers.)

Verse novels love persona poems

Creative Margaret hosts the Poetry drumming this week at
https://reflectionsontheteche.wordpress.com/

LOVE for persona poems

posted by J.G. Annino

I’ve been enjoying a stack of novels in
verse & they send me looking into what these engaging
creatures are all about.

A visit to poet/instructor/sweet Poetry Friday pal/Tuscany expert
Renee LaTulippe’s No Water Water poetry site,
led me to that site section of Post Index & the entry, Verse Novels.
Many nourishing details there! www.nowaterriver.com/

Then I toggled over to Michelle H. Barnes’
Today’s Little Ditty. In this month, May 2016,
Michelle, my poetry workshop pal/Poetry Friday guru & all-around
wonderful Florida colleague, features an interview with poet Laura Shovan about personal poems. Laura’s debut MG novel, which I featured here in my last post, is a novel in verse.
Laura asked for poems written in response to her writing prompt
and they appear daily on Today’s Little Ditty this month.
michellehbarnes.blogspot.com/

Did you know persona poems love verse novels and
of course, vice versa?

A persona poem lands

The shore at our part of the Gulf of Mexico is sand marsh. And that marsh and that shore make all the difference, in spring & fall.

For some birds, the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge is the first
landfall, after a punishing migratory haul across water.

And so it was that recently we ventured on an
old path at the St. Marks refuge. Old, but never before trod by us.
The grassy way was busy with plant & insect inhabitants,
but not with visiting uprights.

c.JanGodownAnnino

c.JanGodownAnnino


We admired everything, including water lilies opened to the sun
in still pools, the last pom pom bursts of purple thistle spikes
and assorted small yellow and orange beauties.

We found adult butterflies and juvenile grasshoppers.
When we met one critter I couldn’t identify & I wondered –
who are you?

Think
by J.G. Annino

Dear bird watcher,

Ah!
You saw a flash, pale yellow
I heard you – “What a pretty fellow>”
Do not think me here for show
I face treacherous miles to go

While you watch me on this thistle
Think – he had to stop and wet his whistle
Think – what other creatures has he seen
Think – what is his perch when humans dream

Flash!
I lift my wings – I’ve seen seeds
After drink and rest it’s food I need
While wings beat steady steady again
Go write a poem, be my friend

I must fly,
Bob, traveling bobolink

c. Jan Godown Annino 2016

c. JanGodownAnnino

c. JanGodownAnnino


Some after story
Bob O’Lincoln is the call some birders
attributed to this bird. Over long time that name
evolved to the lyrical way we say it today.
A tagged bobolink once traveled 12,000 miles in migration.
In a day a bobolink can fly up to 1,000 miles. Without a
suitcase! Bobolinks like rice fields, to glean the grains, such as
in Louisiana & South Carolina on their way to Canada or The North U.S.
Sources: Cornell Ornithology Lab online
Wikipedia
MyDictionary.com

A thank you chirp for bobolink identification of this photo –
which I took May 7, 2016 on our walk at St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge –
trilled out to my birding/writing pal, dear/near neighbor, Ann Morrow.
And two chirps of thanks to Michelle H. Barnes of the always illuminating Today’s Little Ditty, & to Laura Shovan for the persona poem prompt.

Laura Shovan, April Halprin Wayland, Jame Richards

Happy Last Poetry Friday of National Poetry Month goodness!
Bloggers of the poetry party, are well-rounded up by the
talented Buffy Silverman at Buffy’s Blog
http://www.buffysblog.com/

My post here at Bookseedstudio
is about three novels in verse new to me, which
I recently devoured.

THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL by Laura Shovan
GIRL COMING IN FOR A LANDING by April Halprin Wayland
THREE RIVERS RISING by Jame Richards

Each of these stories look at love in an eloquent & moving way.
I admit my bias toward the first two. They float from the pen
& keyboards of two exceptionally talented Poetry Friday folks.
When our big black mailbox offered the third author’s novel,
and I began reading I decided I hope to know her, too.

THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL is a
fresh-born book I wish I could have read in my middle grade years when I moved far from one beloved school to an unknown district. The students in this class face the final days of their beloved school buidling, which is an old friend. I like how with humor & feeling Laura Shovan profiles the different & sometimes volatile personalities that make up a 5th grade class. Laura deftly brings them all together in their feelings for the old school. They want to keep it from being demolished. She crafts this effort with surprises & even musical riffs, for a charming debut novel about an entire classroom of kids.

Ideal readers are fans of stories involving
conflicts within a diverse, middle-class community
friendships within same
disagreement process with parents and school authority figures
exemplary teachers
student ingenuity
poetry
Favorite character voice
With 18 enjoyable narrators I will allow myself two – Gaby Vargas & Jason “Seuss” Chen
Favorite line (s)
“I wish we had school in the woods.” Ben Kidwell in “Dream School” poem.
“I love the dragonfly appearing on my paper.” Rachel Chieka Stein, “Japanese Painting”
“A stranger, a reader,
a poet, a brain?
Will you forget who I was
or stay just the same?” Edgar Lee Jones “Time Capsule Rap
Book bonus
perfect student portraits by Abigail Halpin
some students are in Zoo Creatures Band
end pages – poetry forms explained, prompts & poetry glossary, given
If you are a 60s fan, some fun references via a teacher

images
It’s fitting that nourishing articles about the wonderful
THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
abound online, along with top reviews. Please see
Linda B at TeacherDance, Jama R at Alphabet Soup,
(4.21.16 edition) & a host of others.
Laura’s blog & website are http://www.laurashovan.com

GIRL COMING IN FOR A LANDING is school-set too, in the vibrant
voice of one middle grader who remains unnamed. Multiple poems from
the student narrator – about poems! – make me selfishly love this story. I expect to read some of them to my writer’s groups.
Ideal readers are fans of stories involving
challenges of the school year
young romance
the heart & soul of an emerging poet
exemplary teachers
family connections
poetry
Favorite line (s)
“…music is so amazing
it builds a nest of tears
in my throat.”
Book bonus
Elaine Clayton’s distinctive artwork, created for each of 100+ poems
Shakespeare’s Sonnet Number Twelve

images-1
April Halprin Wayland’s website is http://www.aprilwayland.com/
I first found my way to her titles through the nourishing blog, Teaching Authors, where April is a frequent contributor. http://www.TeachingAuthors.com/

THREE RIVERS RISING is a race for life, during the 1889 Johnstown, Ohio Flood. Events in days leading up to the break of an insufficiently engineered dam owned by wealthy men including Andrea Carnegie, are shared via the story of a budding romance. I liked being pulled into eddies created by the couple’s deceptions & joys. I was also swept into the story of the sensible & sad nurse, ministering to the flood victims. With multiple narrators and voices, the true love between Celestia & Peter make their poems poignant & powerful.
Ideal readers are fans of stories involving
actual disasters in times past
young romance
differences between the powerful & those without power
individual heroics
dysfunctional family dynamics
Favorite character
Peter
Favorite lines
“When will this hell of rain end?
I haven’t seen the stars in so long.” Peter
“Fun always knows where to find her.” Celestia
Book bonus
detailed South Fork Dam chronology, suggested readings
images-2
Jame Richards lives in Connecticut & her blog is at http://jamerichards.blogspot.com

posted by J.G. Annino/Bookseedstudio

Progressive Poem, Poem in Your Pocket Day & More

Hello from Bookseedstudio.

It’s the 21st day of National Poetry Month.

It’s Poem in Your Pocket Day.

It’s also the 21st day of the 2016 Progressive Poem party,
with a new line for you to read, below.

The poem party is an annual online meetup launched by my (& your)
terrific poetry pal, Irene Latham.
of Live Your Poem fame.
Who by the way, has a brand new ARTSPEAK poem up
at her site. Along with picture book, poetry book & adult
novel, goodness. http://www.irenelatham.blogspot.com/

2016 Kidlit Progressive Poem
After today the 2016 Progressive Poem, as yet unnamed,
bounces from Florida up to South Carolina, to my
Haiku & artist pal Robyn Hood Black at
Life on the Deckle Edge. Yesterday the poem
visited Haiti, and Ruth at
There is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken
Town. From that important post, she provided an intriguing line.
April 1st the lively children’s poet, picture book
author & mentor, Laura Purdie Salas, set the stage.

2016 Progressive Poem

A squall of hawk wings stirs the sky.
A hummingbird holds and then hies.
If I could fly, I’d choose to be
Sailing through a forest of poet-trees.

A cast of crabs engraves the sand
Delighting a child’s outstretched hand.
If I could breathe under the sea,
I’d dive, I’d dip, I’d dance with glee.

A clump of crocuses crave the sun.
Kites soar while joyful dogs run.
I sing to spring, to budding green,
to all of life – seen and unseen.

Wee whispers drift from cloud to ear
and finally reach one divining seer
who looks up from her perch and beams —
West Wind is dreaming May, it seems.



Golden wings open and gleam
as I greet the prancing team.
Gliding aside with lyrical speed,
I’d ride Pegasus to Ganymede.

To a pied pocket, the zephyr returns

. . .
But there is more. First, here are each line’s contributors:
1 Laura at Writing the World for Kids
2 Joy at Poetry for Kids Joy
3 Doraine at Dori Reads
4 Diane at Random Noodling
5 Penny at A Penny and Her Jots
6 Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink
7 Liz at Elizabeth Steinglass
8 Janet F. at Live Your Poem
9 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
10 Pat at Writer on a Horse
11 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog
12 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty
13 Linda at TeacherDance
14 Jone at Deo Writer
15 Matt at Radio, Rhythm and Rhyme
16 Violet at Violet Nesdoly
17 Kim at Flukeprints
18 Irene at Live Your Poem
19 Charles Waters at Poetry Time
20 Ruth at There is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken Town
21 Me at Bookseedstudio
22 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge
23 Ramona at Pleasures from the Page
24 Amy at The Poem Farm
25 Mark at Jackett Writes
26 Renee at No Water River
27 Mary Lee at Poetrepository
28 Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe
29 Sheila at Sheila Renfro
30 Donna at Mainely Write

Quite a crew, eh?
But wait – there is more.
Remember Poem in Your Pocket Day?
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A pocket is one of my favorite features of clothes.
Pockets tie in first place
with buttons & hats in my delightful duds pantheon.
For 2016 Poem Your Pocket Day, I wear an apron for its pockets,
to carry poems for sharing in Kindergarten, where I am a longtime
volunteer with the lovely national literacy program,
BookPALS. Some of those poems are quite naturally, from poetry picture books of the Poetry Friday crowd.
https://www.poets.org/national-poetry…/poem-your-pocket-day

But there is more.
As I said, it’s National Poetry Month.

In a lovely surge of synchronicity, I’ve soaked up
up wisdom in person from poetry greats. In my April 15
article here at this site, I wrote about past U.S. Poet Laureate
Robert Pinsky’s visit to our town.

Devon Glover’s lively Sonnet Man
visit to our just-closed
Shakespeare Festival
immersed me that historic form,
& also as it can be recast in rap.

thesonnetman
Nikky Finney’s visit to FAMU’s literature conference
last month set a sensational poetry stage. She told how
her Talladega College mentor strode up to her on a Friday
when she saw that this student was, as students will do
on a Friday at 4 p.m., goofing off with her pals before they
headed to the gym to dance.

“Miss Finney, tell me, do you really have time to sit there, have you
finished reading every book in the library?” asked
Dr. Gloria Wade Gayles.
The formidable mentor turned and strode off with her briefcase.

Nikky Finney said the abrupt reminder – great expectations are held
for the promise of your talent – kept her reading books in the library instead of goofing off all through college. And yes, she read in the library that night instead of hanging out in the gym.

Who is Nikky Finney? Child of South Carolina
segregation-into-integration times.
National Book Award Winner for Poetry for the atmospheric
HEAD OFF & SPLIT and winner of other mighty fine honors
including fellowships, grants & awards. Her other titles include
ON WINGS MADE OF GAUZE, RICE, HEARTWOOD and THE WORLD
IS ROUND.

Happy Poetry Month to you & yours
in all its varied celebrations!
Jan
unnamed-10

Favorite Poem Project & Robert Pinsky

Favorite Poem Project & Robert Pinsky
http://www.favoritepoem.org/

Such an honor! The former U.S. poet laureate,
Robert Pinsky, brought the national Favorite Poem Reading
Project to our town, Tallahassee, recently.

images
Of course we managed to get to the event.
Everyday people from around the state of Florida read a poem,
by an established author. This is the road show for a previous online invitation at the Favorite Poem website. I didn’t enter, as it was some time back. But I’m so glad so many (at least 18,000) people did.

They picked one poem that, over and over, calls to them.
This is one of Robert Pinsky’s favorite challenges. To ask everyone to find a favorite poem or two, read them regularly, and further, he urges us to read the poem out loud and not stop there. Memorize a favorite poem. That allows us to carry it with you, everywhere.

Now, if you are a Poetry Friday regular, this is a given. But
for Bookseedstudio readers who are here from other paths,
might this be a good thing for you to try?

Recently I saw this:

“When was the last time
you did something
for the first time?”

Maybe memorizing a poem will be that new first time
neuron nudger.

Back to Pinsky

This acclaimed poet looks like a cross between Bill Nye, the
Science Guy & that great space educator Carl Sagan. With a
wide grin & great voice, he was just as engaging
as each of them.
“A poem is a work of art made for a human voice,” he told us.
“But it’s not the art of one expert. It’s the art of any and all.”

Here are just three of the poems read that evening.

“Nick and the Candlestick,” Sylvia Plath
“Why I Am Not A Painter,” Frank O’Hara
“Soneto XVII” Pablo Neruda

And I still remember how Pinsky quoted James Baldwin,
“Culture is everybody’s birthright.”

So, everybody, I have always been one of those who can’t pick one
favorite poem. But he said in that case, know that you are
working with one of your favorites. Despite the title of the project,
it doesn’t have to be THE one and true only favorite. Like picking
among children, impossible to do.

So here is the title of a poem section I like a whole lot among
many favorites. It is, “Alphabets,” (part 1) and it is
from the pen of the great Seamus Heaney. It begins:

Alphabets
by Seamus Heaney

“A shadow his father makes with joined hands
And thumbs and fingers nibbles on the wall
Like a rabbit’s head. He understands
He will understand more when he goes to school.

There he draws smoke with chalk the whole first week.
Then he draws the forked stick that they call a Y.
This is writing. A swan’s neck and swan’s back
Make the 2 he can see now as well as say…”
c. Seamus Heaney

Now, I must not have been paying attention because
I didn’t have much advance notice of this long-planned
event & jammed in time, was I, so I had no Pinsky
collection, to nail a book autograph, one of my hobbies.
But everyone says to start with “The Song of Poetry,”
which is both a terrific poetry collection &
an informal primer for poem-making. So it’s on the way.

Thank you Robert Pinsky, for your service as U.S.
Poet Laureaut, for putting Tallahassee
on your map & to Erin Belieu of FSU,
for making this evening happen.

Next time I expect to have a few words about
Tallahassee’s great good luck in the visit to FAMU of
transformative poet Nikki Finney (Head Off & Split.)

Also then, I expect to be playing the National Poetry
Month 2016 Progressive Poetry Game, with Irene
Latham at Live Your Poem & Equally Wonderful
Others. Here’s the lineup (apologies for
computer gremlins -drat! & no links…)

2016 KIDLITOSPHERE PROGRESSIVE POEM
1 Laura at Writing the World for Kids
2 Joy at Joy Acey
3 Doraine at Dori Reads
4 Diane at Random Noodling
5 Penny at A Penny and Her Jots
6 Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink
7 Liz at Elizabeth Steinglass
8 Janet F. at Live Your Poem
9 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
10 Pat at Writer on a Horse
11 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog
12 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty
13 Linda at TeacherDance
14 Jone at Deo Writer
15 Matt at Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme
16 Violet at Violet Nesdoly
17 Kim at Flukeprints
18 Irene at Live Your Poem
19 Charles at Poetry Time
20 Ruth at There is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken Town
21 Jan at Bookseedstudio
22 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge
23 Ramona at Pleasures from the Page
24 Amy at The Poem Farm
25 Mark at Jackett Writes
26 Renee at No Water River
27 Mary Lee at Poetrepository
28 Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe
29 Sheila at Sheila Renfro
30 Donna at Mainely Write

AND today’s Poetry Friday frolic is hosted by my pal Michelle H.
Barnes at the tuneful Today’s Little Ditty.

FRESH DELICIOUS, Irene Latham, Mique Moriuchi

If you are in the market for a market,
grab your basket and stop by
the vendors of FRESH DELICOUS.
It is a crisp collection of
more clever than a cucumber poems
from Poetry Friday’s perfectly wonderful
poem vendor, Irene Latham.

It may be the only poetry collection for children
& I also think for adults, to be honored by its
publisher with a poem printed right
on the BACK COVER!
With artwork front, back & middle,
of adorable paper cut outs,
by Mique Morichi.

"Pole Beans" by Irene Latham, from FRESH DELICIOUS, artwork including back cover, by Mique Moriuchi.  Do you see there is a poem printed on the back cover? Yay!

“Pole Beans” by Irene Latham, from FRESH DELICIOUS, artwork including back cover, by Mique Moriuchi.
Do you see there is a poem printed on the back cover? Yay!

Pole Beans
by Irene Latham

Plucked
from vines,
they no longer
climb.

Now they
swim
in bins-

schooling
fish
soon to be
hooked.

©2016 Irene Latham

I’m the delighted owner of three of Irene’s books,
one poetry collection for adults
(THE COLOR OF LOST ROOMS)
this tasty one I’m munching on today,
FRESH DELICOUS & also,
DEAR WANDERING WILDEBEEST.

I can’t imagine what will arrive from her
desk, next. But I will be so eager for it.

I wonder if the next publisher will be as wonderful
as this publisher WordSong, to put a poem on the back cover?

For grammar groupies, this clever collection also
tickles the funny bone when Irene finds
punctuation –
in summer squash.

But it’s not just me. FRESH DELICIOUS is piling up a
buncha fresh accolades, such as:

“A collection of lively poems celebrate edible delights from the farmers market…. Written mostly in free verse, clever poems show farmers market produce in a new light…. Moriuchi’s colorful collages pair perfectly with Latham’s poems…. This poetry collection will inspire readers to rush to the farmers market to compare Latham’s images with their real-life counterparts. Kid-friendly recipes are also included at the end of the book. Whimsical poems will inspire readers to play with their fruits and vegetables.” —Kirkus Reviews

I think you’ll want to pick your favorite poem from this collection soon!
FRESH DELICIOUS-web

This is my introduction for this fantabulous month –  April. It is when poem making,  poets & poem reading is celebrated.

Today is Poetry Friday. Host  Amy Lv dives into it with a poem about coral at

THE POEM FARM. That’s at https://www.poemfarm.amylv.com/

Also, beginning today, lines of a community game known as

the Progressive Poem, take shape on various blogs. The complete list

is with FRESH DELICIOUS author, my friend, Irene Latham, at

LIVE YOUR POEM.   I’ll be back with the URL for that goodness.

Am noodling on not my regular laptop & doing my best.

Happy poem reading, poem teaching & poem making!

 

 

 

 

St. Patrick’s Day

I like thinking about my Irish roots in March.
Bailey is like Smith is like Jones, eh?

But I snatch my mother’s few stories from my memory
& stir my own recollections. My dear mother
was New Jersey-born, but her grandparents hailed from
the Emerald Isle, I’m told.
My mother made Irish soda bread, or more correctly named,
railway cake, because of her added raisins. She and her
sisters (one of six girls & boys) were religious about
sending St. Patrick’s Day greeting cards, often homemade.
I have asked one cousin, who seems to have
more detail about which part of Ireland our Baileys
immigrated from, for connections because Mom emphasized
my father’s interesting French Huguneout lineage,
& shirked the Irish side of things.

9780815624059-us
IRISH LITERATURE, edited by Maureen O’Rourke Murphy
& James MacKillop, helps stir the pot. Here are lines of
a poem I like returning to, among several, from this collection.

Emily Dickinson
by Michael Longley
Emily Dickinson, I think of you
Wakening early each morning to write
Dressing with care for the act of poetry.
Yours is always a perfect progress
Through such cluttered rooms to eloquence, delight,
To words – your window on the mystery.

I’ve been considering how writers of some lyrics are
poets, especially when I listen to ballads and other
songs performed live.

"Leaving Connolly Station" CD -  Sligo Line

“Leaving Connolly Station” CD –
Sligo Line

We recently enjoyed a performance of our area’s premier
Irish music group #Sligo Line. Now their lovely CD is headed down the line
to our daughter’s godmother,
Florida-born but Irish through and through.

Happy Luck o’ the Irish & good poetry
reading & writing to you.

The weekly Poetry Friday ceili (dance) & feasta (party)
are hosted by wonderful poet & Haiku Highness
Robyn Hood Black at Life on the Deckle edge. It is
for new participants as well as returning contributors &
just for fun, readers. So take a look.

Snappy alligator, sleepy alligator

Last Sunday we went out the door and ran into a bunch
of alligators.
They were loafing.

#St.MarksRefuge c.JanGodownAnnino

#St.MarksRefuge c.JanGodownAnnino


I decided their back story was that they
were full from hunting blue crabs, snakes, mullet
& turtle & similar meals abundant in their home, about
45 minutes from our home.

I was there hunting.
For ideas – poem thoughts, finger play actions,
things to say about alligators. In town I’m looking for
children’s books, quotations, crafts about alligators.
To have fun with kids next month
at a regional literary event, outdoors in a park in
the StoryFort. All ages kids possible, but likely 2-6.
Your suggestions are most welcome.

Which brings me to Muhammad Ali.
I enjoy the lines & verses I read from
this underrated poem maker. As a reporter
I was at a campus press conference for his
appearance in town. It was a thrill to hear him
recite, with joy & great expressions, his ditties.
I also know from the reporter who rode
two hours back to the airport with The Great One,
that Ali grabbed the tape recorder & made up a funny
ditty on the spot for the reporter’s father, when Ali
learned he was a fan.

ALI RAP,  The First Heavyweight Champion of Rap

ALI RAP,
The First Heavyweight Champion of Rap

Here is part of one Ali ditty on my current topic:

“I’ve wrestled with alligators.
I’ve tussled with a whale.
I done handcuffed lightning,
And throwed thunder in jail.”
c. Muhammad Ali

I don’t like Ali’s sport that is damaging to
the human brain & body. I want to say that.
But I do like his talent with words. And his
many humanitarian actions.

Alligator Pie by Dennis Lee is more likely
one pleasure I will share with the kids.

I am also appreciating my visits with serious
poems that reference alligators, such as The
Alligator Bride by Donald Hall.

Happy (alligator-absent) weekend & coming week,
to all.

Today’s Poetry Friday is a lovely walk in the park
with Live Your Poem/Irene Latham.

That same alligator weekend for me, was a book debut weekend for the wonderful & talented Irene. And fortunately for me she was in a Georgia bookstore that we love to visit from Tallahassee. I expect to return here this month for a visit with FRESH DELICIOUS,
her third enchanting poetry collection for young readers.

Here are some more looks at last weekend’s resident reptiles.

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino

For our bird lovers!

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino  - we lucked into white pelicans, too!

#St.MarksRefugec.JanGodownAnnino – we lucked into white pelicans, too!

More poetry, promptly!

DAY 28 of Laura Shovan’s found prompt project

Today is the most special Sunday in February 2016
because it is the last Sunday of Feb. 2016
we will ever see rise
& set. Ever.
We will see other last February Sundays, but
never the exquisite 2016 version that today is.

If you are seeking a way to make it live on,
add a poem to this day’s incredible photograph
from Mary Lee Hahn. Appreciations to Mary Lee!

photograph from Poetry Friday's Mary Lee Hahn, Day 28, Laura Shovan's 2016 Found Object Poetry

photograph from Poetry Friday’s Mary Lee Hahn, Day 28, Laura Shovan’s 2016 Found Object Poetry

Add your responses in the comment section,
or provide links there to your poem making at
your site.

Here is one to start

Showtime

Dear garden pals,

And so I see you
puff your stuff –
golden ears
bleeding hearts
floret duets
cotton bolls
paper coins
pods of pea
and the assorted
riff raff
fly by
volunteer
plants

Now is my year to bolt
molt
burst my veil
do not be alarmed
by this cascade bloom
my offering is
from
the part of me
that doesn’t
clear the room

love,
Mum Allium
c. 2016 Jan Godown Annino

Also please visit the site curated by Carol Varsalona her
for “Spring is in the Air,” her lovely response.

And join the joy tucked within this contribution from
poet Charles Waters

Day 28

GRADUATION

Seedlings huddle

for one final group hug

before sprouting away

to feed the world.
c. Charles Waters

I appreciate the brevity with a punch, of these from Carol & Charles.

And now Margaret Simon sets the stage –

Blossom shrouded in
lace waiting for curtain call
to dance moonlit waltz.
c. Margaret Simon

And Diane Mayr backs up for the wide perspective –

Day 28 was almost a nonstarter. I managed a tanka, but without the alluring allium flower!

new neighbors
riding their new mower
we roll our eyes
at the dandelions and
spring onions gone to waste
c. Diane Mayr

Appreciations to creative Margaret, Diane, & to all you inventive poem makers.
Some day I will catch up to you.

Appreciations to Laura Shovan, who is one fantabulous poem maker,
debut MG author & poetry blogging pal.

Promptly, poetry! Laura Shovan’s February gift.

Each year poet Laura Shovan plays with words and poem-making,
by sharing prompts, catalysts for creativity with words.

This year photographic images are the wardrobe door into idea spinning.
(And we are all spinning about Laura’s forthcoming novel in verse.)

Today’s photo is one I snapped in Washington, D.C., in the tunnel
between the Library of Congress buildings.

I’m pleased to have this response to the photo prompt,
from poet Charles Waters, via Laura Shovan.

Day 23

MAIL BAG
My pouch is bundled with news,
thoughts, sweepstakes, prayers
that I can’t wait to share.
c. Charles Waters

. . .
Another look at it –

Bin binge
by Jan Godown Annino

O what treats
what treatises
treasure maps
photographs

poems
ballads
rhymes

cartoons
stories
picturebooks

babbling brooks

have been rollin’
in this underground
river of words.
© 2016 Jan Godown Annino

c.JanGodownAnnino

c.JanGodownAnnino

This traveling photo prompt party would be pleased to have your thoughts, lines or even poems.
Share here in comments.
Or at Laura’s blog (the link is in the first line of this post, above. And there is another link, below.)

Or via your own blog, with a link to your blog left in comments here.

And you can do this any time.
Or use the prompts but keep your results to yourself.
That’s mighty fine, too.

If you are joining recently here’s Laura’s intro.

And here is the way the found poems went last week –
Week Three

One little word 2016

Both my one little word for 2016 &
also a new occasional feature here
are the lovely term –

MOMENTS
There are also some lovely links below.
. . .
MOMENTS collected in December by JGA
MOM Annino serves her Sicilian stuffing of perfectly seasoned ground beef & rice
GARDEN-clogging past the front-step toad
FIRST-time learner! I now unzip the big purple red ball to share & devour the arils of the French fruit, grenade, a giant pomegranate berry splash zone! (scroll to 2nd item…)
OUR daughter’s moist golden ring cake of dried papaya, cherries, pecans & cashews
MY hubby finding dolphins as they charge & devour fish caught behind a sand bar in Ochlockonee Bay (Tampa’s SaltStrong’s video – it looked just like this!)
LEAVING extra postage stamps on the P.O. packaging counter, various walks to
our neighborhood USPS, in December
GINGER cat is back to his jumping, joyful self, after a worrisome muscle attack.
. . .

In February I plan to return here with January MOMENTS
. . .
The MOMENTS inspiration comes from an author
I was fortunate to meet in 2015, after following along
in social media for some time.
You may have guessed she is the smile-spreading Irene Latham.
She writes beautifully, for adults and children.

Next month you can put on a parka for one of her new books,
WHEN THE SUN SHINES ON ANTARCTICA, And Other Poems from the Frozen Continent.

by Irene Latham illustrations by Anna Wadham

by Irene Latham
illustrations by Anna Wadham

After this Antarctica book has me fluffing up
my feathers for warmth up against a picture
book shiver – I can develop goose bumps
at 50 degrees – I’ll be taking my market basket out to carry her
FRESH! DELICIOUS! Poems from the Farmer’s Market.

(Maybe there’s a pomegranate poem in there.)

So, my occasional MOMENTS blog here at Bookseedstudio
is inspired by Irene’s Live Your Poem blog listing of experiences
that elicit her gratitude.

MORE MOMENTS
If you like the idea of thinking further about the magnitude
of our Moments,
you may want to visit with two more muses:
MUSICIAN Velma Frye’s original poem song, “Moments,”
from the album/CD I AM TO SOMEONE. (Proud that two
comments of praise for her talents at this site are quotes from my magazine feature.)
AND
ACTOR/performer Roberto Benigni, having the best MOMENT,
with life, with his favorite poets, with love! Settle in -not to miss.

APPRECIATIONS to you for sharing your moments with me here this year.

MOMENTS & Poetry Friday
I’m content to find MOMENT as this year’s guiding word, my first Poetry Friday OWL (one little word)
If you want to read more about Poetry Friday, this article is for you.
AND here is the Poetry Friday organizing plan in 2016.

In progress – anaphora to the P degree

Happy New Year! It’s Jan here.
And good day or good evening to you, with my special best
cheer for a chirpy 1st week of 2016.

In summer, which conveniently lasts through October at a
minimum, on humid beach walks that turned into Gulf
of Mexico floats, I attempted to write
a pantoum poem.

DSCN4376
The winter holidays brought me the gift of more salty
beach hikes. Now I walked against cool breezes,
even wind, wrapped up in jacket, long pants
+ my hubby who doesn’t feel cold
the way I do.

So I had images from quite a stretch of sand, surf & sound
to work with, revising the poem.

A pantoum uses anaphora, repetition, which
was what I was doing visiting the same shores
and the topic felt like a smooth fit.

I’ve enjoyed some appreciative eyes on this
one-in-progress, with a generous + patient
critique reader kindly arriving from
points north to school me in the
traditional pantoum ZAZA close,
which carries the final line back to
the 1st. Thank you, Donna at
Mainely Write.

http://mainelywrite.blogspot.com/

My gratitude extends also to my weekly
critique partner, the poetic Adrian at
Slow Dance Journal.

https://slowdancejournal.wordpress.com/2016/01/

My pantoum attempt is incomplete,
but it washed me with a swoosh!
into the first full writing
week of my New Writing Year.

DSCN2343_4
The challenge to try an original pantoum
popped up from the creativity & generosity of
Angie Karcher and the poet wizard J. Patrick Lewis
who teamed up last April inside this article.

https://angiekarcher.wordpress.com/2015/04/09/rhypibomo-2015-day-8-j-patrick-lewis/

They have my warm breezes of appreciation, with a
a beach picnic on top (if they come to town.)

https://angiekarcher.wordpress.com/2015/04/09/rhypibomo-2015-day-8-j-patrick-lewis/

Pantoum plan
lines 2+ 4 become 1 + 3 of the next stanza,
except that the last stanza goes wild,
with lines 2 + 4 appearing as lines 3 + 1 of the
1st stanza. This is known as ZAZA. I think.

Feel free to float by with –

better explanations
links to your pantoums
others’ pantoums
your beloved pantoum sources/wisdom/shrieks.
Among my consultations –
THE TEACHERS & WRITERS HANDBOOK of POETIC FORMS (Ron Padgett, editor)
E.O. Parrott’s HOW TO BE WELL-VERSED IN POETRY
+ the colorfully illustrated by Chris Raschka, A KICK IN THE HEAD from Paul B. Janeczko (I’ve always liked a man with Jan in his name.)
…..
Salt Beach
by Jan Godown Annino

Listen when the laughing gull is silent
Catch winds that sigh down the shore
Dig where coquinas click in sand
Jump a purring tide that rolls to land

Catch winds that sigh down the shore
A bare foot squeaks on slanted sand
Jump a purring tide that rolls to land
Ghost crabs scuttle and then retreat

A bare foot squeaks on slanted sand
A wet wash of shells chime in rhyme
Ghost crabs scuttle and then retreat
Jump a purring tide that rolls to land

A wet wash of shells chime in rhyme
This will take you where you want to go
Jump a purring a tide that rolls to land
Listen when coquinas click in sand
©Jan Godown Annino, 2016


Now, if you are still here, you see how
this is NOT a pantoum.
I didn’t rhyme correctly +
I don’t have a ZAZA pattern close.
Maybe even more pantoum errors
have drifted in there.
So I expect to return with this poem
in true or at least, truer pantoum form,
later. But it’s
fun to be this far along +
to share the process.

Here’s a ripple of pantoum joy.

An animated pantoum!

http://mseffie.com/assignments/poem-a-day/19.html

An Oscar
(Hammerstein)!

http://www.mldb.org/song-145571-i-am-going-to-like-it-here.html

And lessons!

http://www.floodmarkpoetry.com/2014/12/pantoums.htmlhttp://www.floodmarkpoetry.com/2014/12/pantoums.html

http://www.windowsproject.co.uk/wbweb/wwbg25.htm

http://www.write4web.com/tag/pantoum/