Friday, April 17, 2020

progressive poem 2020 is here!

Howdy to all and welcome to Day 17 in this year's Progressive Poem! Started in 2012 by Irene Latham, the tradition has been carried on this year by Margaret Simon.

Our Day 1 Donna led us over the that nice bridge there into a suspenseful adventure by providing not a single starting line but TWO options from which Day 2 Irene could choose!

Well, everybody loves THIS twist, of course, so here we are on Day 17 with Linda Baie's two lines to weigh, and two more lines to compose for Mary Lee's deliberations on Saturday.  Here's the poem so far.

Progressive Poem 2020

Sweet violets shimmy, daffodils sway
along the wiregrass path to the lake
I carry a rucksack of tasty cakes
and a banjo passed down from my gram.

I follow the tracks of deer and raccoon
and echo the call of a wandering loon.
A whispering breeze joins in our song
and night melts into a rose gold dawn

Deep into nature’s embrace, I fold.
Promise of spring helps shake the cold
hints of sun lightly dapple the trees
calling out the sleepy bees

Leaf-litter crackles…I pause. Twig snaps.
I g
asp! Shudder! Breathe out. Relax... 
as a whitetail doe comes into view.
and I choose...
She shifts and spotted fawns debut.

That's a pleasant rhyme Linda Baie provided, isn't it? Not to mention fawns--at least two!  I also like the theatrical quality of those last lines.  So now let's zoom in (yes, I said "zoom;" it is just not possible at this stage for any interaction online NOT to include the word ZOOM).  So, let's zoom in closer on these creatures.  Will the encounter be slow and mesmerizing, or brief and energizing?

Option 1:  We freeze.  My green eyes and her brown

Option 2:  I shift. Banjo twangs. They bound away.

I now hand it off to Mary Lee in full faith that she will take either option and make the most of it!  Follow along as the poem makes its journey through April.  Here is our intrepid band of collaborators.

just for fun 
1 Donna Smith at Mainely Write
2 Irene Latham at Live Your Poem
3 Jone MacCulloch, deowriter
Liz Steinglass
Buffy Silverman
6 Kay McGriff @ kaymcgriff
7 Catherine Flynn at Reading to the Core
8 Tara Smith at Going to Walden
9 Carol Varsalona at Beyond Literacy Link
10 Matt Forrest Esenwine @ R, R, and R
11 Janet Fagal, Reflections on the Teche
12 Linda Mitchell at A Word Edgewise
13 Kat Apel at Kat Whiskers
14 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
15 Leigh Anne Eck at A Day in the Life
16 Linda Baie at Teacher Dance
17 Heidi @ my juicy little universe
18 Mary Lee Hahn at A Year of Reading
19 Tabatha at Opposite of Indifference
20 Rose @ Imagine the Possibilities
21 Janice Scully at Salt City Verse
22 Julieanne at To Read, To Write, To Be
23 Ruth
24 Christie Wyman at Wondering & Wandering
25 Amy at The Poem Farm
26 Dani at Doing the Work That Matters
27 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge
29 Fran Haley at lit bits and pieces
30 Michelle Kogan

Poetry Friday is hosted today at Nix the Comfort Zone, where bread and jam for Molly provide loads of comfort to all us.  I think we're nixing the nix today!

Finally, may I invite you back in time to check out my National Poetry Month video project?  I'm sort of enjoying using my amateur YouTube channel to present poems I'm still pretty proud of (you know, when I'm not fussing over the position of my head vis a vis the bookshelf and how long it's taking to upload! What was I thinking, adding to my screen time?).  Start here on April 2nd with "Throwing the Roads."    May your road be easy over the next weeks...


  1. I was hoping you'd keep the deer and her fawns, and you've given Mary Lee two terrific lines to choose from.

  2. Glad to be catching up with the poem! To freeze or to bound away? Only Mary Lee knows for sure.

  3. I am loving watching this poem unfold and I can't wait to see what happens next.

  4. Two wonderful choices! Either way, an adventure awaits.

  5. Love both lines! First I was pulling for the eyes, but I've decided that the twanging banjo is a lovely addition to our poem that has so many lovely sounds. Only time will tell how Mary Lee will lead us. Happy to be all caught up, went from day 3 to you, all in one sleepless in Seattle stretch.

  6. Dear Heidi, big laugh from me with that dear strumming graphic. :) :) You've created two amazing lines... I want to see how they both end up!! What fun this one has been... I am glad to catch up today. xo

  7. Ah, yes! I wanted the fawns to come play. I am once again rooting for a certain line, but will have to wait for Mary Lee. This process of add a line is a fun adventure when everything else feels like a chore. Love your lagniappe image, too.

  8. Like Irene, I love that you found that deer with the banjo, poem illustrated, maybe? You've given Mary Lee a great curtains-open on the next act, Heidi! We could have a fantasy emerging! Happy Friday!

  9. Glad you kept the fawns - and now two very different paths for Mary Lee!

  10. Yea for the fawns! I can't wait to see which of your two great lines Mary Lee chooses. This has been such fun to follow along with--a bright spot in my day.

  11. Yes to fawns. I love the eye-locking (zooming in there, I see) and I also enjoy the twanging of the banjo. Our poetic journey continues with your terrific contribution. I know you have done a PP with your students before. I do enjoy the surprise, the promise, the meanderings. And Poetry Month project, too. Thanks, Heidi.
    Janet Clare F. (aka skanny17 I forgot....such a nutcase am I but not intentionally.)

  12. Mmm... glad I don't have to choose between those! Great options, both. Love all the encountering on Nature's terms we are experiencing thus far - it's what we need in these surreal weeks, no? Thanks, Heidi!

  13. I am glad you went with the fawns and keeping that awe in our find! Will they stay or will they bound away?

  14. oooooh, I love this. Wouldn't I love to bump into a fawn family in the woods. I hope they stay!

  15. It's always a marvel to watch this poem unfold. While I'm too intimidated to dive into the composition, I'm oh-so-comfortable in my spectator position. Donna's twist was brilliant this year and I love seeing what you've chosen (You can never go wrong with fawns!) and the two lines you sent winging to Mary Lee. I'm also uber impressed by your Youtube endeavors.Well done!

  16. Molly, DIVE in. This is a welcoming bunch and not intimidating at all. I was so nervous at first, so I can relate. (Ok so the first year I think I wrote over a 1000 possibilities. Still have the notebook with all those lines.) And who knows a line might lead to something else. I have read your blog and think you would fit in beautifully. Just my 2 cents! Janet Clare F.

  17. Okay, PF Peeps. I made my choice and have a couple of lines ready for Tabatha. My post goes live at 5:00AM ET if you are a Saturday early bird! Thanks for some GREAT choices, Heidi!

  18. Heidi, I was partial to the fawns but now what will come next. Mary Lee, I am glad that you chose. Can't wait to see which line will move us forward.

  19. Oh the journey this poem has been on! Looking forward to more...Love the fawns, too. :)

  20. Beautiful, Heidi. I'm seeing this after reading Mary Lee's post, so I know which line "wins." Fun to see this process, though!

  21. I'm enjoying watching this year's poem unfold. I love the addition of options this year. Great addition and choices, Heidi.

  22. I like both of your lines Heidi, but love your first line, "We freeze. My green eyes and her brown." As I'm a day late here, I was happy to find that Mary Lee liked it too, thanks!


Thanks for joining in the wild rumpus!