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

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.







For our bird lovers!

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

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

16 thoughts on “Snappy alligator, sleepy alligator

    • Love it, Breanda!

      The #St.MarksRefuge features a series of land causeways that border waterways.
      That day we walked on a path that usually brings us past lots of birds & if the sun is right, alligators, basking.
      We were not level with them on those causeways.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I know what you mean, but laughed out loud at the idea of an alligator’s backstory, which conjures up strange and terrible deeds. I love seeing your pictures, am a little leery of walking where I would see alligators, but then I hike where I might see mountain lions. I love Ali’s poems, but only a few that I’ve seen in random places, didn’t know there was a book. I assume you know “Me, whee!” which I used often to show my students the thrill of few words saying much. Do you know de Paola’s Bill and Pete stories, very fun. Thanks for a delightful post, Jan.


  2. My dear Ms Jan,
    Here are two of my favorite alligator books: The Lady With the Alligator Purse and There’s An Alligator Under My Bed. Love your pics! Thanks also for the info about Ali. I knew he was a rhymer, but didn’t know about a book.


  3. Jan, showcasing Ali while speaking about alligators was quite interesting. My husband boxed in college so we have been fans of Ali for years. I do love his way with words. You are really immersing yourself in alligator lore and reality so I am supposing that your day with the children will be quite thrilling. I also can’t imagine being that close to alligators to take their pictures. You did a fantastic job. Thanks for making this post so enjoyable.


  4. Jan,
    thanks for bringing this book to my attention. And for the Dennis Lee Alligator Pie and Donald Hall mention. I know I’ve read Alligator Bride, but I certainly can’t remember it now. So you’ve sent me off to play with more poetry. Thank you. Great pictures BTW.


  5. Jan! I can tell you are having fun preparing for this alligator talk. 🙂 Love the pics, and I didn’t know Muhammed Ali was a rapper. I rather like the one you share here. I thought for sure there would be an alligator poem in JP Lewis’ National Geographic Big Book of Animal Poetry, but…. nope! Thanks again for sharing time (and lunch!) with me in Thomasville. What a gift. xo


    • Thanks, dear poetry pal. Mr. Ali is a man of interesting accomplishments.
      And I am always anticipating tasty poetry connections, especially with you.
      I was the fortunate one that it was close to home!


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