Thursday, April 18, 2019

npm19: progressive poems lands here


Welcome to all, especially those who are following this year's Kidlitosphere Progressive Poem, an annual April tradition begun in 2012 by Irene Latham of Live Your Poem.  One by one we bring a new line, developing the idea of the poem and spinning it in new directions. This year we're challenging ourselves to build a found poem out of song lines, as suggested on April 1 by our kickoff poet Matt Forrest Esenwine.  Read about this project and enjoy data on previous progressive poems HERE.

Well.  I had been planning to pump up the action with some B-52's beachiness here, but by the time the poem reached me, Amy and Linda had suddenly, interestingly, taken a different tack:

                                    "it's not easy to know
                                     less than one minute old"

"WHO, WHO, WHO?!" I shouted inwardly.  We've had an I, we've had a we, we've had a you, then another we, then an I, then a you again. But I wanted a line with we, you AND I together to the end, and I wanted a line with how--my thought was to find a line that would show that the relationship between these deep divers was new and untried (less than one minute old!), that it wouldn't be easy to know how the waltzing would go...

and the B-52's let me down!  I tried "Rock Lobster," "Nude Beach" and "Dry County," "Roam" and "Song for a Future Generation,"  "Dirty Back Roads" and "Deadbeat Club," and none of them produced exactly what I was looking for (although I did spend a tremendous hour or so reliving the extreme lunatical lyrical glory that is the B-52's).  Here's one I'd forgotten about, making me heartily wish I could work some cake into the scenario (you only need the middle 2-3 minutes of this 6-minute song to get the idea)...



So next I tried Natalie Merchant and the lovely "Milly and Molly and Maggie and May," which is an E.E. Cummings poem set to music, involves the ocean, and which also offers an ending assonance:

as small as a world and as large as alone

--which was cool, except that the emphasis was on small and alone, and still nothing happened. So then I tried Natalie's first outfit, 10,000 Maniacs, and an all-time favorite, "These Are Days," which gave me this line:

to be part of the miracles you see in every hour

--nice, but a little cheesy without its abundant context, and which again did not feel as active or forward-moving as I wanted. So I turned to that other great export of Athens, Georgia: R.E.M.  When you can figure out what Michael Stipe is singing (and sometimes even when you can't), you know it's definitely poetry.

I looked for some watery songs and and fell upon "Find the River," which is a folkier number of theirs and offered a line that didn't include its delicious "bergamot and vetiver" but which finally cements that WE and whizzes us along to the brink of something fabulous-- plus a rhyme. Plus "minute" and "years." Plus a light at the bottom of the deep? Please listen to this whole gorgeous song to get the full effect of the line!




KIDLITOSPHERE
PROGRESSIVE POEM 2019 - DAY 19

Endless summer; I can see for miles...
Fun, fun, fun - and the whole world smiles.
No time for school - just time to play,
we swim the laughin' sea each and every day.

You had only to rise, lean from your window,
the curtain opens on a portrait of today.
Kodachrome greens, dazzling blue,
It's the chance of a lifetime,

make it last forever-ready? Set? Let's Go!
Come, we'll take a walk, the sun is shining down,
Not a cloud in the sky got the sun in my eyes.
Tomorrow's here. It's called today.

Gonna get me a piece o' the sky.
I wanna fly like an eagle, to the sea
and there's a tiger in my veins.
Oh, won't you come with me waltzing the waves,
                                                                        diving the deep?
It's not easy to know
less than one minute old  

we're closer now than light years to go

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

Gosh, I hope that gives Buffy something to go on! Below is the complete list of contributors and lines, and I close with mighty thanks to Irene for making this thang happen every year, and to Amy for hosting today at The Poem Farm.  Happy spring holy days to all to celebrate!

NEW!!! You asked for it and now it exists--THE PLAYLIST!

************************************************
Found Lines:
L1 The Who, 'I Can See for Miles' / The Beach Boys, 'Endless Summer'
L2 The Beach Boys, 'Fun, Fun, Fun'/Dean Martin, "When You're Smiling"
L3 The Jamies, "Summertime, Summertime'
L4 The Doors, 'Summer's Almost Gone' / Led Zeppelin, 'Good Times, Bad Times'
L5 Ray Bradbury, 'Dandelion Wine'
L6 Joni Mitchell, "Chelsea Morning"
L7 Paul Simon, "Kodachrome," "Dazzling Blue"
L8 Dan Fogelberg, "Run for the Roses"
L9 Spice Girls, "Wannabe"/Will Smith, "Gettin' Jiggy Wit It"
L10 The Beatles, "Good Day Sunshine"
L11 The Carpenters, "Top of the World"
L12 Lin-Manuel Miranda, "Underneath the Lovely London Sky" from MARY POPPINS
L13 Carole King, "Hi-de-ho (That Sweet Roll)"
L14 Steve Miller, "Fly Like An Eagle"
L15 Don Felder, "Wild Life"
L16 Nowlenn Leroy, "Song of the Sea" (lullaby)
L17 Sara Bareilles, "She Used to Be Mine" from WAITRESS
L18 Stevie Wonder, "Isn't She Lovely"
L19 R.E.M., "Find the River"

And you can see the list of Poem Line Contributors in the right sidebar!

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

npm19: all of the above 17










Rejection
is the title I selected.
Random
are the words that appeared.

Angry's
not the color of the notes.
Neither
could we call them garrulous.

Melting
is what happens to my hope,
little
meltings, little coolings

collecting
on the surface of my heart.



Tuesday, April 16, 2019

npm19: all of the above 15/16

Image result for heptadecagon








Buzdygon
    for Lauren and Jake

You don't notice it at first
so close to an ordinary circle
it appears, until you give it
a fraction more attention
hear the slight vibration
of magnetic poles around the edges.

This is no ordinary circle--
no, not even a regular heptadecagon
with its subtle bending song
of seventeen sides.

This figure will confound you
with complexity, will hit you
with the force of a ceremonial mace,
leave you quavering, semi-shaking
in your shoes, all the hairs on
your head risen in amazement at the
surprising dimensions of seventeen-and-a-

half sides.

©Heidi Mordhorst

Sunday, April 14, 2019

npm19: all of the above 14



suddenly a
tornado watch
ripples our screens
unhinges good sense
concern careens
kindling wind

©Heidi Mordhorst


Saturday, April 13, 2019

npm19: all of the above 13



      my back lawn + metaphor dice =




Friday, April 12, 2019

npm19: all of the above 11/12



There's a whirlwind of poetry play going on around the Kidlitosphere this month, and we do all need more play in our lives.  Margaret has been using some of the toys with her students: Metaphor Dice, paint chips, Magnetic Poetry, Haikubes.  However, reading her April 10 post, a line caught my eye and became my plaything.  I hope Margaret doesn't mind.

 


The Poet Evolves

Gathering words from
the air
not using any toys

Gathering toys from
the words
Not using any air

Gathering air from
the toys
not using any words

**************************************
In conclusion, evolution is overrated. 😏

Scroll down and see some of my other efforts from this unProject this week.  Then go gather some words from the air over at Live Your Poem with Irene, and don't miss Margaret's contribution to the Progressive Poem at Reflections on the Teche.





 

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

npm19: all of the above 8/9
















 11 Years Left

Get a grip, kid--
it's an unwritten rule of
the planet outside your head
that to withdraw is to lose it. 
It only persists in the flexible
copper wirings and firings of
your beautiful brain.  Use it.


Sunday, April 7, 2019

npm19: all of the above 7

Mascots
   for Mary Lee & Hemingway

Writing or reading,
rafting or riding--
how could you fail,
with Rhino to guide you?

Hiking or hooping,
hiving or hiding--
Whatever you do,
have Hippo beside you!


ODT #6 : return

In January I settled on One Difficult Truth to try to keep in mind for the year, rather than One Little Word.  This truth is briefly best expressed as "Life is gorgeous AND bitter" or "this excruciating, beautiful life"--take your pick.  The point is the paradox.

Thanks to Ruth at There Is No Such Thing As a Godforsaken Town, I have another poem to add to my collection of ODT poems.

Instructions on Not Giving Up | Ada Limón

More than the fuchsia funnels breaking out
of the crabapple tree, more than the neighbor’s
almost obscene display of cherry limbs shoving
their cotton candy-colored blossoms to the slate
sky of Spring rains, it’s the greening of the trees
that really gets to me. When all the shock of white
and taffy, the world’s baubles and trinkets, leave
the pavement strewn with the confetti of aftermath,
the leaves come. Patient, plodding, a green skin
growing over whatever winter did to us, a return
to the strange idea of continuous living despite
the mess of us, the hurt, the empty. Fine then,
I’ll take it, the tree seems to say, a new slick leaf
unfurling like a fist to an open palm, I’ll take it all.


It would appear that Ada specializes in these sorts of poems, just based on the titles of her collections:
"Ada Limón is the author of Lucky Wreck (2006), This Big Fake World (2006), Sharks in the Rivers (2010), and Bright Dead Things (2015)."

"...a green skin
growing over whatever winter did to us..."
 

Saturday, April 6, 2019

npm19: all of the above 6

spring qi

all this burgeoning does not unfurl leaves
of peace: this is an unsettling, a stirring of
the rested energies, a sudden squall
above warming earth.

all this springing brings growing pains
of stretch and struggle, wet tendons of roots,
the rage of change straining to get
above ground, to burst.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

npm19: all of the above 4/5

 online fraudulence

nodding
nodding
noggin gone
gotten
gotten
grading done
forging
forging
head ahung
gridding
learning's
bluntly wrong

©Heidi Mordhorst

***********************************************
Yes, it's that time again, where I attempt to encapsulate in single letters the unique and nuanced growth and progress of each child, across multiple measures and along a timeline of nine weeks: report card time.

I've tried to streamline it for myself with summaries like

A= consistently & independently       
B= generally & frequently         
C= partially & periodically       
D= barely & rarely


and for kids and families I've tried to help "standards-based" make some sense with

A= got it!
B= getting it!
C= learning it with help
D= working toward it...but not there yet

but let's face it--kids aren't numbers, and they aren't letters either. I might feel different if there were still a place for comments in the online gradebook, even though it would be more work, but no--we have abdicated professional responsibility for showing our knowing of students with words in favor of a lighter paperworkload. There is no place on the grid for words; only numbers and letters.

And truth be told, every kid is all of the above all at the same time.


The round-up on this first Friday of National Poetry Month is with Karen at her blog with the shockingly clever title.  You can also visit Jama's round-up of April NPM blog projects here.  Enjoy all of the above!
                                                     

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

npm19: all of the above 3


owning it

lift a lime, a loaf of bread
steal a scarf, a spool of thread
nick a nail, a bolt, a screw
all these things belong to you--

because you saw them, touched them, smelled them
then you listened as you held them,
now they live inside your head,
sneak into stories you can spread

©Heidi Mordhorst