Saturday, September 26, 2020


I'm distracted. You're overwhelmed. I pause a moment at the bathroom window to take in the dogwood's deep red signal of fall. You pause a moment to appreciate the fleeting equinox light, and then we both return to the business of managing our business, our small part of the collective fear and dread of this moment in time.

And then we remember:  it's not just the virus.  It's not just the deep red signal of another police shooting.  It's not just the fleeting light of grief and respect for a woman of wise and notorious decorum before we must dive into the fray again.  

Meanwhile, beneath and above all this, our climate emergency continues.  Luckily art comes to the rescue, and we are gifted a way to remember.

Union Square NYC, September 19, 2020

Please go here to read about the reimagining of Metronome, a giant electronic clock that has now been converted to a CLIMATECLOCK which shows the deadline for achieving zero global emissions before there is no turning back (this screenshot from 9/26/20 8:54 am EST).

ClimateClock has a companion website and an app where you can get not just the bad news, but good news about what IS being done around the world to reduce and reverse the effects of emissions, and how we ourselves can #ActInTime.  The app shows an action item of the week which gives us each something concrete to do.

I guess I have clocks on the mind as I navigate 2h15m of live online instruction for each of two groups of PreK children every day.  How do I offer lively, engaging, HUMANIZING contact for 4-year-olds through a screen?  How much time is enough?  How much is too much?  How do I build in time for guided free-play choices indoors and out, like we would have in real school?

So far we're having pretty good success using Padlet for our choice boards (Indoor and Outdoor), this online countdown timer, and this music to let us know when it's time to come back to class. 


So here I am at the advertised "crossroads of poetry, public school PreK & climate action"--what can I offer?

In Jeopardy

tick tock think
tick tock play
tick tock thoughtful playful days

tick tock stumble
tick tock sigh
ticktock check the clock and try

again  again  again  again  again  again  again  again


Jone has the Poetry Friday roundup today at her spruce new blog.  Better late than never, right? in sooo many ways!


  1. Sigh. I was hoping you'd join in this week. Oh, boy are these days and weeks full. I could work and work and work not because anyone is making me. But, I want to make the virtual experience better and then better tomorrow and then better. Luckily art comes to the rescue. I was listening to a podcast last night that mentioned "dueling" which means "doing" something while thinking. ie. cleaning out your closet right before a writing deadline -- really, by doing something productive, are brains are at work creatively in the background. I know that this is a contributor to my crafting table frenzy as of late. I'm so glad that play dough and water and collecting and jumping are part of what you share with children. Thank you, Hedidi.

  2. Hi Heidi, I've just been grumping with my husband/colleague about what teaching is becoming. Thanks for this.

  3. I am doing cyberschool with my grandchildren, and am finding that it is really high-pressure trying to keep the time and number of lessons reasonable. Compared to public school, it is much more intense. We take ukulele breaks, art breaks, snack and lunch; but still it is so different now and so pressured it seems. We all need to breathe. See Liz Steinglass today, if you haven't yet.

  4. Yes, I see how the equinox light from my poem shone into your post.

    I'm with you in all of this. The despair, the determined holding onto of joy, the pushing of our creativity to the max. The trying to do good and right "again again again again again again again again." And then again some more.

  5. Leo's word for any time piece is "Tick Tock." We need to keep trying again and again. Hang in there!

  6. Hi Heidi! Great to visit you again over here. I knew about the ClimateClock, but not about the website. I applaud them for focusing on good news as well as bad. I applaud YOU for the online learning and nurturing which is making a big difference in these young students' lives. Love the Jeopardy theme music to bring them back to class!

  7. Tick tock, indeed. Thank you for sharing. I didn't know about the climate clock. Yikes.

    Thank you for showing up and teaching and doing all that you do for kids. I feel for my teacher friends right now.

  8. The trying again. I guess it is all we can do right now. I am finding it so hard to stay hopeful but I'm so glad to have so much company, so many people tick tock trying. Thanks for this...

  9. I saw an article about the clock but wasn't brave enough to even read it. Thank you for reminding me. I love your poem and its acknowledgement of all we accomplish, even when we stumble, again, and again, and again.

  10. Thanks for this post, Heidi. The climate clock is necessary and scary both. Your tic tocks are like a drumbeat call to action.


Thanks for joining in the wild rumpus!