Monday, April 30, 2012

Fictional Musicians, or This One Goes to Eleven

Ever seen This is Spinal Tap? I don't think I've ever watched the whole thing, but I've seen bits of it. Including this scene, where Nigel Tufnel, one of the members of the band Spinal Tap, is showing off his amplifier:

Nigel Tufnel: The numbers all go to eleven. Look, right across the board, eleven, eleven, eleven and...
Marty DiBergi: Oh, I see. And most amps go up to ten?
Nigel Tufnel: Exactly.
Marty DiBergi: Does that mean it's louder? Is it any louder?
Nigel Tufnel: Well, it's one louder, isn't it? It's not ten. You see, most blokes, you know, will be playing at ten. You're on ten here, all the way up, all the way up, all the way up, you're on ten on your guitar. Where can you go from there? Where?
Marty DiBergi: I don't know.
Nigel Tufnel: Nowhere. Exactly. What we do is, if we need that extra push over the cliff, you know what we do?
Marty DiBergi: Put it up to eleven.
Nigel Tufnel: Eleven. Exactly. One louder.
Marty DiBergi: Why don't you just make ten louder and make ten be the top number and make that a little louder?
Nigel Tufnel: [pause] These go to eleven.


The band Spinal Tap isn't the only popular group of fictional musicians. Here's Spinner's list of Top 23 Fake Bands, which includes everything from Homer Simpson's barbershop quartet to Bill and Ted's Wyld Stallyns to this video:


In addition to fictional music groups, there are also fictional songs, albums, orchestral works, and operas. This famous song is from a fictional opera, Hannibal by Chalumeau, in Phantom of the Opera:



Saturday, April 28, 2012

Keeping It Short

Two short poems...

A tweet poem by Yahia Lababidi:



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

photo by Bindaas Madhavi


Open-Hearted
by Tabatha Yeatts

To listen is to open your heart.
To listen, open your heart.
Listen, open your heart.
Listen, heart.
Open.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Fictional Favorites, Divergent: Abnegation

Welcome, Poetry Friday celebrants!


Glad to have you here on this last Friday of National Poetry Month. What a month it has been! Today, we're wrapping up Fictional Favorites.


This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

I've been offering poems for the five factions in Divergent by Veronica Roth. Insurgent, the second book in the trilogy, is coming out in a week and the excitement is building.

Today's poems are for ABNEGATION, the selfless faction. Abnegation may come off as drab, but there's more than meets the eye.

I've already shared ones for Dauntless, Erudite, Amity, and Candor. I have been trying hard to avoid spoilers!


For ABNEGATION:

On Quitting
by Edgar Albert Guest

How much grit do you think you’ve got?
Can you quit a thing that you like a lot?
You may talk of pluck; it’s an easy word,
And where’er you go it is often heard;
But can you tell to a jot or guess
Just how much courage you now possess?

You may stand to trouble and keep your grin,
But have you tackled self-discipline?
Have you ever issued commands to you
To quit the things that you like to do,
And then, when tempted and sorely swayed,
Those rigid orders have you obeyed?

Don’t boast of your grit till you’ve tried it out,
Nor prate to men of your courage stout,
For it’s easy enough to retain a grin
In the face of a fight there’s a chance to win,
But the sort of grit that is good to own
Is the stuff you need when you’re all alone.

How much grit do you think you’ve got?
Can you turn from joys that you like a lot?
Have you ever tested yourself to know
How far with yourself your will can go?
If you want to know if you have grit,
Just pick out a joy that you like, and quit.

It’s bully sport and it’s open fight;
It will keep you busy both day and night;
For the toughest kind of a game you’ll find
Is to make your body obey your mind.
And you never will know what is meant by grit
Unless there’s something you’ve tried to quit.

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

I Ask You
by Billy Collins

What scene would I want to be enveloped in
more than this one,
an ordinary night at the kitchen table,
floral wallpaper pressing in,
white cabinets full of glass,
the telephone silent,
a pen tilted back in my hand?

read the rest here

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

To play pianissimo
by Lola Haskins

To play pianissimo
Does not mean silence.
The absence of moon in the day sky,
for example.

read the rest here

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

Wanderer
by Antonio Machado

Wanderer, your footsteps are
the road, and nothing more;
wanderer, there is no road,
the way is made by walking.
­
************

Also:

Keeping Things Whole by Mark Strand
Famous by Naomi Shihab Nye (who also had a poem for Candor!)

Thanks for visiting. Please leave your link in the comments and I will round them up throughout the day!

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

Robyn Hood Black shares an interview with Carol-Ann Hoyte and Heidi Bee Roemer, the editors of AND THE CROWD GOES WILD!, a sports-themed poetry anthology which will debut with the Olympics this summer.

Amy Ludwig VanDerwater has three things for us today! At The Poem Farm she has the third-to-last letter of this month's Dictionary Hike: X is for XENOPHOBIA.

At Sharing Our Notebooks, Amy has Suz Blackaby with her good humor and word tickets.

And Sharing Our Notebooks also has Allan Wolf with his wall writing and butt books. (Butt books?)

Linda at TeacherDance follows Amy L-V's advice to use verbs!

Today Steven Withrow gives us an original poem: Questions About Invertebrates.

Susan Taylor Brown is back with an original poem: 13 Ways of Looking at a Hummingbird.

Renee LaTulippe shares Julie Larios' No Strings Attached, Lee Wardlaw's WON TON: A Cat Tale Told In Haiku, and a giveaway of THE HOUSE by J. Patrick Lewis!

Julie Larios offers a heartfelt thank-you-with-links to Renee LaTulippe who has done such a wonderful job with readings and interviews of children's poets during the month of April.

Fats from Gathering Books contributes Woman to Man by Ella Wheeler Wilcox.

Greg has a catku by Lee Wardlaw. Since last Poetry Friday, he's also had poems by Ron Koertge, Susan Taylor Brown, Bruce Coville, Thanhha Lai, Robert L. Forbes, and JonArno Lawson!

Mary Lee sums up the problem with packing all of our ardor for poetry into one month when she says "The best I can do this last Friday of National Poetry Month is to share yesterday's poem. Today's poem won't be written until tonight. Maybe late tonight. (That's what the month's come to...but I haven't dropped a stitch yet!!!)" You're doing great, Mary Lee.

Andi Sibley is in with a great poem written by her son.

Wow, I go do school and vet drop-offs and the next thing I know my mailbox is full!

Liz Steinglass shares an original, silly poem this morning: "Poke that Pea!"

Jim Hill adds Imminent Growth Spurt, an original inspired by his omnivorous kid.

Laura Shovan is excited to have Jeannine Atkins guest-blogging about multi-tasking at Author Amok today.

Tara at A Teaching Life discovered a "new" poet.

Alice at Supratentorial reviewed A River of Words, a juvenile biography of Williams, and has some other Williams related links to share.

Laura Purdie Salas is in with her daily haiku plus two stunning haiku from October Mourning, a forthcoming collection by Leslea Newman.

This week's 15 Words or Less poems are underway.

Write Time has the Progressive Poem today.

Heidi added to her post from earlier this week featuring poems by kindergarteners...She thinks the collection should be called "Small and Juicy!"

Doraine Bennett has kitchen appliances for writers today.

At Random Noodling, Diane Mayr reviews last weekend's Massachusetts Poetry Festival.

The war is almost over at Kids of the Homefront Army, but not quite...

Kurious Kitty shares "Buttercups," and, Kurious K's Kwotes' quote is by Helen Ferris.

We're in the middle of lilac time at The Write Sisters, and we have a poem called The Beat.

Jama Rattigan is spotlighting Heidi Roemer with an original poem about skating.

Ruth is contributing Wendell Berry's How To Be A Poet.

Charles, a.k.a. Father Goose, shares his original A Poem is a Metaphor.

Debbie Diller gives us My Cat and I by Aileen Fisher.

The Stenhouse Blog has a book spine poem for us today.

Irene Latham points us to a poem of hers about a not-evil stepmother titled "Anne Moynet Audubon, Long Before Birds of America that appeared yesterday at Your Daily Poem.

Betsy has poems (and info about a chalk poetry celebration) at Teaching Young Writers.

Sara brings A Love Song by William Carlos Williams (and an update on her efforts to learn how to sing).

Amy at Hope is the Word is highlighting the delightful picture book A Sock Is a Pocket for Your Toes by Elizabeth Garton Scanlon.

Kate is celebrating haiku at Book Aunt, with a focus on Issa and on ocean haiku from the comments (for a giveaway of her book, Water Sings Blue). People can still write a haiku to enter in the next three days.

At Fomagrams, Dave Elzey shares week four of his daily twitter haiku, and a little bonus mention of the political tweets of Elinor Lipman.

Sylvia Vardell posted a 5Q interview with the wonderful Janet Wong.

Violet took on a very difficult challenge: to use coon, tour, lid, painted, price, query, cog, eve, jail, jab, why, be, hex, ha, x-rays, dare, zoo, looks, slime, fees, men, waste, date, leaner, nips, will, pin, worms, riot, tiger, jut, gait, and rang in a poem. Wow!

Lorie Ann is sharing An Awesome Book at ReaderTotz and an original haiku at On Point.

Esther at Teaching Authors brings us original poems by fourth graders.

Janet Squires is all about wild poetry today.

Joyce Ray reports on a fantastic Maine poetry festival she attended on poetry and revolution.

Jeannine wrote about a new collection of poems based on painting and history called This Caravaggio by Annie Boutelle.

Over at Wild Rose Reader, Elaine has an original poem titled Things to Do If You Are a Book. (So sorry about your car!)

Marjorie sounds a final clarion call for people to contribute to LitWorld's Global Poem for Change.

At Bildungsroman, we have the monologue from Labyrinth.

Karen Edmisten has finally made it to Poetry Friday.

April is in Chicago for the International Reading Association Convention, but she still managed to send her Poem-A-Day-Challenge poem, in which her dog, Eli, meets a handmade doll. All this month's poems can be viewed here.

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

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Human Bridges

I cannot forget my mother. [S]he is my bridge. When I needed to get across, she steadied herself long enough for me to run across safely.
~Renita Weems


Sleeping mother with child
by Christian Krohg (1852–1925)

Hawaiian Mother and Child
by Charles W. Bartlett, c. 1920

by Bartolomeo Pinelli (1781–1835)

by Eastman Johnson (1824–1906)

Une femme et son enfant

by Henri-Jacques Bource (1826–1899)

Mere et Ses Enfants
by Alfred Stevens

A motherhood exhibit at the International Museum of Women

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Fictional Favorites, Divergent: Candor and Amity


This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

I'm "diverging" from my regular Fictional Favorites and offering poems for the five factions in Divergent by Veronica Roth. Today's are for CANDOR, the honest faction, and for AMITY, the peaceful/friendly faction:


For CANDOR:

by Paul G

Truth Serum
By Naomi Shihab Nye

We made it from the ground-up corn in the old back pasture.
Pinched a scent of night jasmine billowing off the fence,
popped it right in.
That frog song wanting nothing but echo?
We used that.
Stirred it widely. Noticed the clouds while stirring.
Called upon our ancient great aunts and their long slow eyes
of summer. Dropped in their names.

read the rest here.

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

At Last the Secret is Out
by W.H. Auden

At last the secret is out,
as it always must come in the end,
the delicious story is ripe to tell
to tell to the intimate friend;
over the tea-cups and into the square
the tongues has its desire;
still waters run deep, my dear,
there's never smoke without fire.

Behind the corpse in the reservoir,
behind the ghost on the links,
behind the lady who dances
and the man who madly drinks,
under the look of fatigue
the attack of migraine and the sigh
there is always another story,
there is more than meets the eye.

For the clear voice suddenly singing,
high up in the convent wall,
the scent of the elder bushes,
the sporting prints in the hall,
the croquet matches in summer,
the handshake, the cough, the kiss,
there is always a wicked secret,
a private reason for this.

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

George Washington’s Birthday: Wondering
by Bobbi Katz

I wonder what I would have said
if my dad asked me,
"Son, do you know who cut down
my pretty cherry tree?"
I think I might have closed my eyes
and thought a little bit
about the herds of elephants
I'd seen attacking it.
I would have heard the rat-a-tat
of woodpeckers, at least,
or the raging roar of a charging boar
or some such other beast!
Perhaps a hippopotamus
with nothing else to do
had wandered through our garden
and stopped to take a chew.
We all know George said,
"Father, I cannot tell a lie."
Yet I can't help but wonder ...
Did he really try?


Copyright c 1992 by Bobbi Katz and used with her permission.

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

Friends by Mary Anne Enriquez

For AMITY:

The Clouds Above Us
by Lu Yu

The clouds above us join and separate,
The breeze in the courtyard leaves and returns.
Life is like that, so why not relax?
Who can stop us from celebrating?

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

THE GOOD NEWS
by Thich Nhat Hanh

They don’t publish
the good news.
The good news is published
by us.
We have a special edition every moment,
and we need you to read it.
The good news is that you are alive,
and the linden tree is still there,
standing firm in the harsh Winter.
The good news is that you have wonderful eyes
to touch the blue sky.
The good news is that your child is there before you,
and your arms are available:
hugging is possible.

read the rest here

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

Emily Dickinson and Elvis Presley in Heaven
by Hans Ostrom

They call each other "E." Elvis picks
wildflowers near the river and brings
them to Emily. She explains half-rhymes to him.

In heaven Emily wears her hair long, sports
Levis and western blouses with rhinestones.
Elvis is lean again, wears baggy trousers

and T-shirts, a letterman's jacket from Tupelo High.
They take long walks and often hold hands.
She prefers they remain just friends. Forever.

read the rest here

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

Often I Imagine the Earth
By Dan Gerber

Often I imagine the earth
through the eyes of the atoms we're made of—
atoms, peculiar
atoms everywhere—
no me, no you, no opinions,

read the rest here.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Sing Me A Story


Sing Me A Story is a neat nonprofit which was co-founded by Austin Atteberry and Sara Doschadis in Nashville, Tennessee ... here's how it works:

* Children in children’s hospitals, orphanages and youth organizations across the country and around the world are given the opportunity to write and illustrate stories about ANYTHING they want.

* Those stories are then uploaded to www.SingMeAStory.org through the collaboration of the partnering organization and The Sing Me A Story Foundation.

* Participating songwriters view the stories, turn them into songs, record them and send them back to the children by uploading them back to the site. By doing so, not only is it on the site, but the partnering organization gets an email with the song attached as an Mp3.

* The program hopes to incorporate any individual and/or group who considers themselves a songwriter, which includes music classes!

Want to get involved, either as a partner, donor, or songwriter? Visit Sing Me A Story.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Fictional Favorites, Divergent: Dauntless & Erudite


This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

I'm "diverging" from my regular Fictional Favorites and offering poems for the five factions in Divergent by Veronica Roth. Do you know what faction you would join? Maybe these Fictional Favorites will help you decide... (Don't worry -- no spoilers!)

Today poems are for ERUDITE, the scholarly faction and for DAUNTLESS, the audacious faction:


For ERUDITE:

photo by Hash Milhan

An Afternoon in the Stacks
by William Stafford

Closing the book, I find I have left my head
inside. It is dark in here, but the chapters open
their beautiful spaces and give a rustling sound,
words adjusting themselves to their meaning.
Long passages open at successive pages.

read the rest here.

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

There Is No Frigate Like A Book
by Emily Dickinson

There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.
This traverse may the poorest take
Without oppress of toll;
How frugal is the chariot
That bears a human soul!

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

from Little Gidding (last of the Four Quartets)
by T.S. Eliot

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.

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

photo by Ma1974

For DAUNTLESS:

Risk
by Anaïs Nin

And then the day came,
when the risk
to remain tight
in a bud
was more painful
than the risk
it took
to Blossom.

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

from Vierge Moderne
by Edith Södergran
translated by Stina Katchadourian

I am a laughing streak of scarlet sun...
I am a net for all voracious fish,
I am a toast to every woman's honor,
I am a step toward luck and toward ruin,
I am a leap in freedom and the self...
I'm the whisper of desire in a man's ear,
I'm the soul's shivering, the flesh's longing and denial,
I'm an entry sign to new paradises.
I am a flame, searching and brave,
I am water, deep yet bold only to the knees,
I am fire and water, honestly combined, on free terms...

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

First Fig
by Edna St Vincent Millay

My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends--
It gives a lovely light!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Fictional Favorites, part five


This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

Today's guests are Jama Rattigan of Jama's Alphabet Soup and Laura Shovan of Author Amok. Jama says:

The character I have chosen is Mrs. Patmore, the cook, from "Downton Abbey."


My favorite scenes from the series take place in the kitchen (big surprise), and as she is a little plump and very cuddly and huggable, somehow I associate her with nursery rhymes, like "Simple Simon," or "Polly Put the Kettle On." As she is a quintessential British cook, I think she'd also appreciate A.A. Milne's "Cottleston Pie" and "The King's Breakfast." I can hear her reciting these as she kneads dough or stirs soup in one of her big kettles.

A little Cottleston Pie for you:


Recipe time!
* Cottleston Pie
* Mrs. Patmore’s Infamous Raspberry Meringue Pudding.
* Mrs. Patmore's Sauté Chicken Lyonnaise (scroll down).

Plus a song: "Polly Put the Kettle On" by the Carolina Chocolate Drops.

~~~~~~~~~~

Laura Shovan chose the character Auntie Mame from Patrick Dennis' Auntie Mame. Laura says:


For Auntie Mame, I have two poems: "Barter" by Sara Teasdale and "The Passionate Freudian to His Love" by Dorothy Parker. The early chapters of Auntie Mame mention that she has a signed copy of Teasdale's book. Presumably, they are friends. I would NOT have picked Teasdale for Mame otherwise, but I think Mame would appreciate the "a moment of loveliness/splendor is worthy giving up a lifetime of peace" theme.

Barter
by Sara Teasdale

Life has loveliness to sell,
All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff,
Soaring fire that sways and sings,
And children's faces looking up,
Holding wonder like a cup.

Life has loveliness to sell,
Music like the curve of gold,
Scent of pine trees in the rain,
Eyes that love you, arms that hold,
And for your spirit's still delight,
Holy thoughts that star the night.

Spend all you have for loveliness,
Buy it and never count the cost;
For one white singing hour of peace
Count many a year of strife well lost,
And for a breath of ecstasy
Give all you have been, or could be.

~~~~~~~~~~

Of course, I had to find a Dorothy Parker poem for Auntie Mame. They would have been frenemies, for sure. Both women are known for their wit. Mame would appreciate this one because it skewers popular psychology. Auntie Mame would be the first to jump on a budding trend, like psychoanalysis. But she's also magnificent in her ability to see through anyone's pretenses -- save her own.

an excerpt of The Passionate Freudian to His Love
by Dorothy Parker

While the pale moon gleams, we will dream sweet dreams,
And I'll win your admiration,
For it's only fair to admit I'm there
With a mean interpretation.
In the sunrise glow we will whisper low
Of the scenes our dreams have painted,
And when you're advised what they symbolized
We'll begin to feel acquainted.
So we'll gaily float in a slumber boat
Where subconscious waves dash wildly;
In the stars' soft light, we will say good-night—
And “good-night!” will put it mildly.

~~~~~~~~~~

Thank you to Jama and Laura for sharing their Fictional Favorites! Another thanks to Laura for having me on her blog today!

Also, I'm sharing a poem video by my daughter at Savvy Verse and Wit. Please stop by!

I'm going to "diverge" from my regular Friday Fictional Favorites and have them multiple days next week -- I'm offering poems for the five factions in Divergent by Veronica Roth. Do you know what faction you would join? Maybe these Fictional Favorites will help you decide...


Diane at Random Noodling is our Poetry Friday host.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Seals

“But of all other stupendous inventions, what sublimity of mind must have been his who conceived how to communicate his most secret thoughts to any other person, though very far distant, either in time or place? And with no greater difficulty than the various arrangement of two dozen little signs upon paper? Let this be the seal of all the admirable inventions of man.”
~ Galileo Galilei


What's a seal? An embossed emblem, figure, or symbol used as evidence of authenticity. It gives a feeling of formality, of seriousness, of definitiveness. If you "seal the deal," it's done. How long have people been making seals? Let's start with one from 2000 B.C.:

Stamp seal: unicorn or bull and inscription,
Mature Harappan period, ca. 2600–1900 B.C., Indus Valley
Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

Triangular label impressed with stamp seal: for grain loan (clay),
ca. 7th century B.C. Mesopotamia, Nimrud (ancient Kalhu), Assyrian
Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC

A Song Dynasty governmental seal,
circa 1,000 years ago, copper.
The Golden Bull of the Holy Roman Emperor Charles IV, 1356

Queen Victoria's Great Seal of Canada
imbedded in sculpture in Major's Hill Park, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Oak Seal Ring
by János Gábor Varga

Aesop's Fables Seal Necklace
by Plum and Posey, Inc.

Links:

* How to make your own sealing wax
* DIY Wooden Dowel Seal
* A stamp and cylinder seal art lesson plan
* Make your own computer image seal

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Fictional Favorites, a bonus


This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

This poem is for Todd Hewitt, from Patrick Ness' Chaos Walking Trilogy.


IN SILENCE
by Thomas Merton, (1915–1968)

Be still.
Listen to the stones of the wall.
Be silent, they try
To speak your

Name.
Listen
To the living walls.
Who are you?
Who
Are you? Whose
Silence are you?

Who (be quiet)
Are you (as these stones
Are quiet). Do not
Think of what you are
Still less of
What you may one day be.
Rather
Be what you are (but who?) be
The unthinkable one
You do not know.

O be still, while
You are still alive,
And all things live around you
Speaking (I do not hear)
To your own being,
Speaking by the Unknown
That is in you and in themselves.

“I will try, like them
To be my own silence:
And this is difficult. The whole
World is secretly on fire. The stones
Burn, even the stones
They burn me. How can a man be still or
Listen to all things burning? How can he dare
To sit with them
When all their silence
Is on fire?”

Monday, April 16, 2012

Me and My Cello

Imagine how the world could be, so very fine
So happy together
~ The Turtles


Can you watch this video and not smile? I can't.


* The Piano Guys
* Cello Wars (Star Wars Parody)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

75 Guitars

Pretty Woman might be my favorite Van Halen song, but probably the only reason I'd post this:



is this:

Eddie Van Halen Donates 75 of His Guitars to Public Schools

75!?! Nicely done, Mr. Van Halen!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Friday, April 13, 2012

Fictional Favorites, part four, plus a progressive poem

So much going on here today! Thanks for coming.


We'll start with the KidLitosphere Progressive Poem, day 13:

If you are reading this
you must be hungry
Kick off your silver slippers
Come sit with us a spell

A hanky, here, now dry your tears
And fill your glass with wine
Now, pour. The parchment has secrets
Smells of a Moroccan market spill out.

You have come to the right place, just breathe in.
Honey, mint, cinnamon, sorrow. Now, breathe out
last week’s dreams. Take a wish from the jar.
Inside, deep inside, is the answer…

Unfold it, and let us riddle it together,

~~~~~~~~~~

Tomorrow, Diane will have the next line. For the full line-up, click here.

~~~~~~~~~~


This series of posts considers What would fictional characters' favorite poets/poems be?

Tara from A Teaching Life and Linda from TeacherDance are sharing their Fictional Favorites today. Tara chose Anna Karenina and Linda picked Ántonia Shimerda.

Tara says:

I connected the fierce urgency and determination of Mary Oliver's "The Journey" with Anna Karenina's feelings the moment she knows she must go with Vronsky, whatever the cost. My own thoughts about Anna have changed so much over the years...the more I experienced of life, the more subtle and sympathetic a character she became. I've also always loved this Oliver poem - the elemental strength of it. Anna felt strength like this when she follows Vronsky - I hear it especially in those last 10 lines.


The Journey
by Mary Oliver

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice --
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.

It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do --
determined to save
the only life you could save.



~~~~~~~~~~


Linda Baie chose Willa Cather's Ántonia Shimerda from the novel My Ántonia. Ms. Shimerda's favorite poems would be Meadowlarks by Sarah Teasdale and Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost.



Meadowlarks
by Sarah Teasdale

In the silver light after a storm,
Under dripping boughs of bright new green,
I take the low path to hear the meadowlarks
Alone and high-hearted as if I were a queen.
What have I to fear in life or death
Who have known three things: the kiss in the night,
The white flying joy when a song is born,
And meadowlarks whistling in silver light.

~~~~~~~~~~

Nothing Gold Can Stay
by Robert Frost

Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
But only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

~~~~~~~~~~

Thank you so much, Tara and Linda, for sharing your fictional favorites today! And thanks, Irene, for the progressive poem fun!

Booktalking is our Poetry Friday host.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

In The Kitchen

Kitchens, libraries, and gardens are some of my favorite places. I love kitchens because I associate them with nourishment on multiple levels.
Perhaps the World Ends Here
By Joy Harjo


The world begins at a kitchen table. No matter what, we must eat to live.

The gifts of earth are brought and prepared, set on the table. So it has been since creation, and it will go on.

We chase chickens or dogs away from it. Babies teethe at the corners. They scrape their knees under it.

It is here that children are given instructions on what it means to be human. We make men at it, we make women.

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Kücheninterieur, 17th century
by Unknown

Interieurszene
by Gustav Köhler

Chimney sweep
by Firs Sergeyevich Zhuravlev (1836–1901)

by Denis-Pierre Bergeret (1846-1910)

Old Man in the Kitchen
by Jean-Baptiste Marie Pierre (1714–1789)

Kitchen Still-Life
by Frans Snyders (1579–1657)

In der Klosterküche
by Adolf Humborg

La Cuisinière Hollandaise
by Gerrit Dou (1613–1675)

Allegorie der Küche (Allegory of the Kitchen), 1616
by Franz Clein