Every Human Has Rights – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

At this peace holiday time, a warm Poetry Friday greeting
for January 12, 2018. We are collected right here at Bookseedstudio.

On January 19, please
join at A Journey Through the Pages.

Special salutes have rung out this week
& continue during the holiday weekend seeking the world
of peace & freedom dreamed of
by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King.

I’m sharing a child photograph of this Nobel Peace prize
recipient who was raised in a family of
many ministers & other religious leaders,
who preached love of all
races, all peoples.
A center that tells his story is here.

c.TheKingCenter,
all rights reserved

A student intern created an annotated photo story here.

The poetry book I’m sharing in honor of Dr. King’s legacy is
EVERY HUMAN HAS RIGHTS
A Photographic Declaration for Kids.
It is a young reader’s edition of the historic United Nations
Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The book is sometimes blunt, it can be light, &
it is eventually hopeful in presenting the 30 human rights.
I think all readers age 11 & older can appreciate this one.
I feel it is a book Dr. King would have loved to read
to students.
Children’s poetry lines are paired with photographs
Here is one poem that made me think of the recent Holidays.

Poem for Right # 26
You Have The Right to Go To School for Free

“Reading, writing, and arithmetic
I’m just hoping it will all stick
It’s my right to learn and obtain an education
When I’m done, I’ll go on vacation.”

Sydney
C. 2009, all rights reserved, National Geographic Society
For more information on EVERY HUMAN HAS RIGHTS.

I have not yet read Andrea Davis Pinkney & Brian Pinkney’s MARTIN RISING,
but a crackerjack children’s literature librarian I know in Virginia, Marcie Atkins, recommended this to me in a social media group, as I was writing this post.From Scholastic. On the list, for sure.

Whether your post relates to peace, Dr. King,
or another wonderful topic, you can share
your URL link in comments below.
I’ll do my best to wrap everything up here,
into this end of this post. You can also send the link details to me at jgaoffice (at)
gmail (dot) com. Please put your actual name in the email subject line if you send it that way. Appreciations.

The first beautiful Poetry Friday blog of the year
featured a book I feel Dr. King also would
have loved to read to children, CAN I TOUCH YOUR
HAIR? Find that from last week, at Reading to the Core.

Some important book links about Dr. King are shared at Live Your Poem.

Peaceful wishes at this time of celebrating
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. &
always.

The January 12, 2018 Poetry Friday Posse includes (but is not limited to…)

Myra GB at Gathering Books, who beams in with luminosity that can float you outside, to read in the light of the moon. Even. With. The. Cold. You will want to visit the picture book she shares -THE MOON’S LOVE IN POETRY, translated from Portuguese into English. The creators are father-son team, Jose Jorge Letria and Andre Letria.

https://gatheringbooks.org/2018/01/12/poetry-friday-17/

&&&

Our own Teaching Authors campus ponders peace within, via April Halprin Wayland’s post. And – a giveaway!

http://www.teachingauthors.com/2018/01/let-go-simplify-and-book-giveaway.html

&&&

Do alligators like the cold? Our poet knows. . . Go ahead and Nix The Comfort Zone.

http://mbhmaine.wordpress.com

&&&

Be on the leading edge of poetry with Linda Mitchell at A WORD EDGEWISE. She shares  lines in a forthcoming release by a magical poet.

http://awordedgewiselindamitchell.blogspot.com/

&&&

Shuffle in the warm sands of downunder with Sally Murphy, who shares original salty verses as winter comfort for the chilled northabove. (Is that the opposite of downunder?)

http://sallymurphy.com.au/2018/01/poetry-friday-three-poems-from-the-beach/

&&&

Welcome back! Keri, at Keri Recommends. We missed you. She returns to share a lot, including her 2018 One Little Word. Perfect timing!

https://kerirecommends.com/2018/01/poetry-friday-trying-new-things-and-my-one-little-word-for-2018/

&&&
Artist & poet Michelle Kogan gives peace at chance with words from the incomparable
Maya Angelou.
https://moreart4all.wordpress.com/2018/01/11/poetry-friday-rising-up-art/

&&&

Poet & novelist Laura Shovan visits the fascinating gingko. And she
is into new fancies, as always. Perhaps, inventing a new kind of scarf?

http://laurashovan.com/2018/01/poetry-friday-gingko/

&&&

Robyn Hood Black, poet with a made-for-movies name, ponders
Burns, the Scottish bard. And for a very good reason!

http://www.robynhoodblack.com/blog.htm?post=1073804

&&&

Dears, if you yearn for a little Emily B. Go appreciate TabathaYeatts for our fix.

https://tabathayeatts.blogspot.com/

&&&

Tune to Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme with Matt Forrest Esenwine (FLASHLIGHT NIGHT guy) who brings a bulletin! (If you are reading this at an indecent late Thurs. hour, he’s live in the first minutes of Friday morn.)  https://wp.me/p2DEY3-1Na

&&&
Ice Music, anyone? Kay McGriff at Edublogs is listening & captivated.
I feel you will be, too.
http://kaymcgriff.edublogs.org/2018/01/11/poetry-friday-ice-music/
&&&
Laura Purdie Salas presents her original poem “When Death Moved In,”
which sadly did not require research. Sigh. Extra love to you, Laura.
http://laurasalas.com/poems-for-teachers/death-moved-poetry-friday/
&&&
Teacher Dance with Linda Baie shimmies with tentative dance moves
of children from two different races, discovering friendship. How?
In poems! Original ones. That they write!
http://www.teacherdance.org/2018/01/poetry-friday-learning-about-others.html
&&&
Jane The Rain City Librarian Jane The Rain City Librariantakes a cozy path into Middle Earth, which feels like the place I want to be.
http://www.raincitylibrarian.ca/?p=20527
&&&
Haiti Ruth
We wrap our arms around the community that has
sent out so much vibrant visual art & music & culinary delicacies to the world. January 12 will always be a time to remember the strong people of the enduring country of Haiti.

https://thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com/2018/01/poetry-friday-my-earthquake-poems-for.html

&&&
Carol Varsalona of Beyond Literacy shares a poetry surprise from the U.S. Mails, a poem delivery treat some Poetry Friday folks take to in fabulous fashion as her post shows. Next time, maybe you will sign up.

http://beyondliteracylink.blogspot.com/2018/01/special-mail-delivery.html

&&&

At Carol’s Corner take an important flight into Germany
with Rose, a 19-year-old young adult pilot (fiction, inspired
by the truths of young women surviving in beastly situations under
German Nazi terror & torture.)
Rose, a character created by the author of CODE NAME VERITY,
is empowered by poetry of Edna Saint Vincent Millay.
I followed so many links once I got started. Appreciations, Carol.
http://carolwscorner.blogspot.com/2018/01/poetry-friday.html

&&&
MaryLee Hahn book wrangler at Reading Year
leads us to LOVE, the book,
with a new poem illustrated for everyone, but especially for
young readers and those who read to them. Want.
http://readingyear.blogspot.com/2018/01/poetry-friday-love.html

&&&
Margaret Simon who steers so steady at Reflections on the Teche
looks into the depths of the bayou and brings us peace.
Poetry Friday: Bayou Sings
&&&
Tara Smith is on duty at A Teaching Life
winnowing wisdom from Mr. Langston Hughes,
poet & philosopher from the past, brought fast forward
for these hands-up-to-the-face-in-dismay times. Potent.
https://ateachinglifedotcom.wordpress.com/2018/01/12/poetry-fridaycrossing-jordan-by-langston-hughes/
&&&
Heidi Mordhurst in the wonderful world of My Juicy Little Universe
gifts us with a needed celebration of precious young writers.Go treat yourself to keen observations of nature, including emerging poets’ lovely lines
inspired by our own (Amy at The Poem Farm!)
https://myjuicylittleuniverse.blogspot.com/2018/01/writing-from-research-2nd-grade-poems.html
&&&
Donna Smith is keeping uniquely iced at Mainely Write.
She has the best winter frost picture ever & imaginative poetry riffing from it.
http://mainelywrite.blogspot.com/2018/01/frost-on-pane.html
&&&
Amy Ludwig Vanderwater of The Poem Farm flies a dove to us
in original artwork & poem. She also finds a dove from a famous artist. But mostly,
go be enchanted with a trick taught Ms. Amy by a wee writing student!
http://www.poemfarm.amylv.com/2018/01/ask-your-cat-ask-your-art-ask.html
&&&
Especially in these times, we are grateful that Dani Burstfield is Doing The Work That Matters. Today she returns from a chilly forest hike with
wish-you-were-there images & poetry.
Poetry Friday: Haiku
&&&
Helping us live our poems, we find piper Irene Latham opening up picture books
where poems flow by with some words Spanish, some words English.
http://irenelatham.blogspot.com/2018/01/on-princesas-peas-and-agua-aguita.html
&&&
Karen Edmisten brings us to a poet we can’t listen & learn from,
often enough, Mr. Langston Hughes. With great appreciations, Karen!
https://karenedmisten.blogspot.com/2018/01/poetry-friday-i-too-by-langston-hughes.html

&&&

Take a whirl with Julie Paschkis’ folkloric art & animal poems, in the gallery today, at Books4LearningThe book title alone is endearing.

https://books4learning.blogspot.com/2018/01/flutter-and-hum-animal-poems-julie.html

&&&

Little Willow with Bildungsroman, known for bringing the right books  to grateful hands, visits with a poem by the artist & poet Rupi Kaur.  Thank you, Little Willow.

https://slayground.livejournal.com/865555.html

&&&

Violet shows us how to be inspired in one, two, three, four, five, six original poems. Cuteness alert in the photo dept! Plus, she dispenses a handful of new-to-me words, folded quite nicely & rightly into an original poem.

https://vnesdolypoems.wordpress.com/2018/01/12/a-january-week

&&&

Do you crave more student poems? I do. Jone, who is maclibrary,  obliges with flair, with four. And she announces a book winner 🙂 Could be you? https://maclibrary.wordpress.com/2018/01/12/poetry-friday-student-poetry-and-a-winner/

&&&

Inventive Brenda, spinning magic at Friendly Fairy Tales, remembers summer while dealing with the stuff of this very season. And don’t cha know, she gifts us a groovy word she made.   https://friendlyfairytales.com/2018/01/11/siren-summer/

&&&

Christine who is Wondering and Wandering mindfully, joins us with an original haiku at the New Year, inspired by the exchange created our own Jone, an annual event that  gives homage to the idea of Nengajo, a Japanese custom of sending New Years postcards.

https://wonderingandwondering.wordpress.com/2018/01/12/new-years-haiku-poetryfriday/

&&&
You will want to be Reading to the Core with Catherine,
where she brings us into the realm of a wonderful Ambassador,
Jacqueline Woodson!
https://readingtothecore.wordpress.com/2018/01/13/poetry-friday-jacqueline-woodsons-on-paper/

&&&

Maybe you have tried the French lai, but it’s new to me. Rather, it was new to me

until Kats Whiskers heart poured out into it. Go visit.

 

***  from your correpondent – Links are flying into this territory in flocks, so latest links, could be in comments, beneath. Appreciations for your creative sharing at your posts & sweet words here. My plan is to tuck in any more arrivals – you folks are busy poet peddlers! –  Sat. morn at some indeterminate o’clock  & to toggle around myself to every P.F. poster before next Friday.  Remember that next Friday we  be conducted by Kay, who brought us the incredible ice music post today.

She is at  A Journey Through the Pages.

Thank you, everyone!

 

 

 

Advertisements

Nature nurtures

A lush hush
nourishes
my
days.
image & words
C. JanGodownAnnino
all rights reserved

A lush hush is what nourishes me these days.

“(But songs need silences to be musical.
Prayer needs silence to be heard.
The world needs silhouetting silence.)”

copyright Everett Hoagland all rights reserved,
in HERE: New and Selected Poems,
lines from the poem by Hoagland, “In the Boston MFA”

Hello in this top of 2018.
The early months of this year I plan to
hibernate in a cave of writing.
I will have interviews to check facts,
trips to the library & bookstore
for more books
& to meet a writing partner.

But more than in other months, I plan
to not hear much that is not Nature
during the hours
my husband is out of the house
at work with his law students.
Today begins a mini-retreat of
working silence,
renewed each day.

Because I do read about the world
intently, I will support causes &
candidates
in letters and button clicks & emails.
But most of all, I expect to listen & learn
from silence.

Mr. Everett Hoagland whose HERE is
my first step in studying his work,
is a poet new to me. I am
transfixed with his honest & heart-felt
takes on the way African & African-American history
is treated, such as the story of Joann Little
& others.

I hope your beginning
days of 2018 are as voice-filled,
or quiet,
as you need or like. In any event,
my wish is that the Nature in your area
nurtures you.

…………

Dec, 15, 2017 Poetry Friday Poetry Party

Today Radio Rhythm & Rhyme hosts a party.
And Random Noodling/ Diane wraps her wisdom around Potery Friday.
Appreciations to both of you.

….

Do you ever decorate for a traditional event a bit outside the box?
Here are some fresh couplets created this morning
from our North Florida neck of the woods.

Knitted jellyfish & sewn alligator float on a tree of pink
Sunny SandyLand serves pineapple juice for a Christmas drink

Our gal’s pie is pecan, as you may guess with one surprising hiccup
Good goo that teases the treat together is Vermont maple syrup!

A triangle outdoor tree evokes energetic elation
It’s nice to note each salty shipshape decoration.

– J.G. Annino

c.2017JanGodownAnnino

………..

c.2017JanGodownAnnnino

c.2017JanGodownAnnino

c.2017JanGodownAnnino

…………

Wishes for Light, Love & Laughter & with hugs of appreciation for Poetry Friday & KidLit Friends.

THE INCREDIBLE MAGIC of BEING – supernova novel

Starlight, star bright
first star I see tonight
I wish I may
I wish I might
make a wish
to make things right

….

Twinkle, twinkle, little star . . .

….

THE INCREDIBLE MAGIC OF BEING
by Kathryn Erskine
I look skyward at night & think of a boy named
Julian, because we just met
in a new novel
that reflects upon the cosmos,
THE INCREDIBLE MAGIC OF BEING.

Julian’s enchantment with stars leads him into
unexpected realms in his new Maine neighborhood.
But no one seems to share Julian’s focus on the cosmos.
They won’t even look through his telescope.
(I will, Julian, I will!)
Star study with Julian and his new buddy,
grumpy Mr. X Sciacchiatano, is good for the soul.
As soon as I could,
I reread this book to see how the award-winning
author worked a big bit of magic on me, back there.
I can’t say what it is or that’d be a spoiler.

I laughed out loud (p. 150, p. 210) &
cried (page 213 & + others.) This middle grade book
has been my escape hatch from the unstellar political news.
More important, INCREDIBLE will entertain &
enlighten the sort of kids whose vocabulary is expanding
like the universe. You know, the nerds.

Almost-10-year-old Julian is fixated on the night sky,
creating custom sky charts. Julian stops
to appreciate sunsets & likes to discuss death,
or rather, the afterlife.
He is ultra aware of feelings, his surroundings &
sudden small events
likely to happen. He also lives with a big medical
secret about his body. And he is deathly frightened
of one thing, not related to his
medical history. Or, maybe it is.
Julian’s family members – two high-achieving
Moms & teen sister Pookie – are frequently
distracted
& mainly unattentive to his interests.

The family’s move to Maine from Washington, D.C.,
to operate a lakefront B & B,
launches the family into what becomes a supernova of
odd occurrences & incredible coincidences.
I loved being along for Julian’s journey.
His advice to avoid dark energy & listen to
what the universe whispers to me sounds wise. And
INCREDIBLE inspires me to remember
star poems of childhood.

I bought this book myself & urge you to go find it at
your library or bookstore. I found this cosmos video and
music on You Tube, which I feel Julian could have created,
(although he didn’t.)
Also, during the time that this book that celebrates coincidences
was my travel reading, our path took me to a park
named Julian (Dr. Julian G. Bruce State Park) near a village
where we stopped in our tracks
to admire a starship. Magic to me.

STARSHIP
c.2017JanGodownAnnino

. . . .

It’s Poetry Friday, so take a few shining
steps with it here.

FLASHLIGHT NIGHT: shining picture book

Hello flashlight fans! Poetry Friday is beamed out from READING YEAR/A Year of Reading.

* * *

FLASHLIGHT NIGHT
by Matt Forrest Esenwine with artwork from Fred Koehler

As a fan of the world’s most gargantuan flashlights – lighthouses –
I carry a torch for creative stories
where flashlights are woven into the action.
So it is not surprising that I am all aglow to
open a new picture book with you – FLASHLIGHT NIGHT.

The text by Matt Forrest Esenwine is a poem story alive with the promise
of high adventure unfolding in the sedate backyard.

Shines a path where waters rush
reveals a hole in the underbrush

The illustrations by Fred Koehler are a nocturne gallery, with the nightshade from
scene to scene heightening the child’s delight in overlooked but important clues,
to go back and look at up close, as soon as the book is first read. This is a read again & again trek into the make-believe unknown, undertaken by three children, a girl and two boys.

To celebrate publication, the two creators agreed to tell me something about their childhoods.

MATT FORREST ESENWINE
“Hi, thank you for doing a post, Jan! I really appreciate that.”

(The book deserves a lot of spotlight, Matt.- jga)

“Growing up in rural New Hampshire, I developed an appreciation for nature from a young age. We lived on 10 acres of mostly wooded property, and although I was not allowed to go deep into the woods, the woods were all around me and therefore afforded me a great opportunity to use my imagination.

I never had a treehouse as a child, but I did have something I called my “hideout”, which was an area just off of our lawn that consisted of lots of large, flat stones, thick juniper bushes, and a couple of large, easily-climbed trees. Some days I would pretend I was a bad guy hiding from the law, while other days I was the good guy trying to track down the baddies.

My hideout was also my “secret” place to have lunch. Mom would give me my food and I would head out to one of the flat rocks there and eat underneath the tree. And even though this little area was right along the edge of the lawn and only 15 feet or so away from the road, I felt like I was in my own little world!

I suppose it is no wonder, then, that the natural world and my sense of family have played such crucial roles in my writing, both for adults as well as for children. I am fortunate that dad has not sold the place yet – at 82, he still lives on that same old dirt road surrounded by woods – but I know that a not-so-little piece of me will be lost the day he does.”

(This paints an evocative picture, Matt. Thank you! – jga)

I first encountered Matt’s work via the Poetry Friday/Today’s Little Ditty crowd, where I am happily surprised to find that we have just appeared in an anthology together.
Now I anticipate Matt’s poems in many forthcoming books.
Please visit him here.

C. Copyright illustration,
FRED KOEHLER
C. text,
MATT FORREST ESENWINE

FRED KOEHLER
“When I was a kid, our house backed up to an acre or two of Florida scrub. Through the woods I had neighbors whose dad worked construction and brought home all the scraps of job site lumber. In those trees, we would build the most elaborate fort systems, with tight ropes lines between the trees, trap doors, and even underground bunkers. We had more fun than any other kids on the planet, and probably could fend off pirates better than the Swiss Family Robinson.”

(I see the foundations of an artist’s mind in those constructions, Fred.
Thank you! – jag)

For more about this exceptional artist, whose work I first encountered in the hilarious, minimalist-word Rebecca Kai Dotlich story, ONE DAY, THE END
& now anticipate next year in Fred’s Pacific garbage patch-set debut novel,
please visit his site & online gallery.
Also, travel along as KidLitTV reveals, via a talk with Rocco Staino, how Fred helped develop this book’s evocative nightscape.

I ordered FLASHLIGHT NIIGHT from my local indy, Midtown Reader.

My hideout (Robyn & Laura, appreciations for sharing yours) memories include
the fairy woods on one side of us in the 1st house & the creek ravine woods
behind the 2nd house.

C. illustration,
FRED KOEHLER
C. text
Matt Forrest Esenwine

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!

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