Friday, August 21, 2009


Poetry Friday is hosted today by The Boy Reader. Nice to meet you, Kyle--a fellow teacher who will be helping me reflect on my new job as Lead Reader.

So fond of alliteration am I that both our children start with D, which is slightly troublesome in that they must appear in the family diary as TWO space-consuming initials. Here I'd prefer just to call them by their carefully chosen names, but I feel a responsibility to protect their identities in cyberspace (is it warranted?), so here they shall be known as D1 (a girl halfway to 11) and D2 (a boy 6 and 11/12). But they are not both daughters. Though they are both darling.

D1 the mathematician likes to deny that she has any poet in her at all and says things like, "Mom, why do you have to make everything about poetry?" Then the other day at the pool during adult swim I saw her mouthing words and counting fingers, and then she asked to be reminded of the syllable count for a haiku. Gazing into the grass she said,

the clover is not
strong enough to hold the bee
that pollinates it

Is it nature or is it nurture? : )

Friday, August 14, 2009

drawing in, reaching out

I didn't notice it last week under the coastal sky at Rehoboth Beach, DE, but now that we're back in leafy Bethesda, it's clear: each night it's darker a little earlier. Here's an apropoem by Eve Merriam, a great favorite of mine...

The New Moon

Hold on to me
We will slip carefully carefully
don't tip it over
into this canoe
pale as birch bark

and with the stars
over our shoulders
down the dark river
of the sky.

Do not delay.
By next week
the canoe will be bulging with cargo,
there will be no room
inside for us.

Tonight is the time.
Step carefully.
Hold on to me.

That poem just entered my Top Five of All Time (don't ask me what the other four are yet; I didn't know I had a Top Five Poems list).

In other news, aiming as advised for 15 promotional events for Pumpkin Butterfly in October (15 events in two weeks is beyond a girl with a day job, don't you think?), I have strong leads on our local district Back-to-School Fair, a Pumpkin Festival at a farm (three days' worth!), several school book fairs, a workshop at my local branch library and the local B&N. I'm working on an all-ages poetry reading at my church, another something at a local church that goes pumpkin patch in October, and our local Whole Foods. And I'm going to the NCTE conference in Philadelphia in November. Must get postcards printed, must get postcards printed, must get postcards printed...

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

pumpkins on my mind

Oh dear. I can't decide if I'm delighted or dejected to finally find my way to the wealth of promoformation at the bubblestampede blog of Laura Salas and Fiona Bayrock. So many provocative ideas, so many approaches, so obvious that I should have started long before beginning of June! Despite my 'tenacity,' I have been rebuffed by the farm where the pumpkin butterfly poem, "Ghosts," happened; they can't fit my fabulous book launch event into their packed pumpkin-harvest October now I'm trawling for another pumpkin farm that has more respect for poetry and racking my brain for another clever launch venue...