Friday, June 28, 2013

Talking Poetry

I love this Voice of America headline -- "US Poet Laureate: Find the Poem that Speaks to You." There IS a poem that speaks to everyone, I'm sure of it. You can hear US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey speak with VOA here:

Want to listen to more about poetry? TED talks has a poetry category, which includes Billy Collins, Emmanuel Jal, Natalie Merchant, and Shane Koyczan, among others.

Amy has the Poetry Friday round-up at The Poem Farm.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Lost Wax Casting

A sculptor is a person obsessed with the form and shape of things.
~Henry Moore

Sharing sculptures made using lost wax casting this Art Thursday.

Liquid bronze being poured into the casting mold.
photo by Álfheiður Magnúsdóttir

Working at Kondagaon Bastar Workshop
photo shared by Sushilsakhuja

Indian Village Mother with five children
by Sushilsakhuja

Michael Jordan
by Omri and Julie Rotblatt-Amrany
photo by Wally Gobetz

William Shakespeare
designed by John Massey Rhind in 1907
photo by Wally Gobetz

Durga Dokra style. Dokra style is brass worked by the lost wax method of metal casting, pioneered by Adibasi metalsmiths of central India, but this Durga is actually made of clay.
photo by Lokendra Nath Roychoudhury

Moire copper ban, Chu, before 552 BC

Ashanti Lost Wax Casting in Krofofrom, Ghana
Bronze Sculpture: Lost Wax Casting on Get Up and DIY
Sculpture lesson plan from the National Park Service

Friday, June 21, 2013


photo by davidd

by Richard Brautigan

Sometimes life is merely a matter of coffee and whatever intimacy a cup of coffee affords. I once read something about coffee. The thing said that coffee is good for you; it stimulates all the organs.

I thought at first this was a strange way to put it, and not altogether pleasant, but as time goes by I have found out that it makes sense in its own limited way. I’ll tell you what I mean.

Yesterday morning I went over to see a girl. I like her. Whatever we had going for us is gone now. She does not care for me. I blew it and wish I hadn’t.

read the rest here


photo by Stephanie Watson

Poetry/Coffee links:

* Balzac's Margaret Atwood blend coffee helps raise funds and awareness for Canada’s Pelee Island Bird Observatory (Margaret Atwood's poems wow me. Like this one and this one.)
* The Drowsy Poet Coffee Company
* Espresso Neruda
* Walt Whitman: Cranberry Coffee Cake to go with your coffee
* The Shakespearean Insult Mug, in case you need something to keep your coffee in
* Coffee poems by Emmett Lee Dickinson, Emily Dickinson's third cousin, twice removed -- at her request


Carol has the Poetry Friday round-up today at Carol's Corner

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Learning from the Sky

Among twenty snowy mountains,
The only moving thing
Was the eye of the blackbird.
~Wallace Stevens

Such amazing variety in birds! I've posted about feathers, bird counts, and birdsongs before, but today, we've got the whole bird. If you find yourself inspired to start birdwatching, check out the links at the end.

Young red-footed booby
Taken in the Palmyra Atoll by the United States Coast Guard

Splendid Fairy Wren (face fan display)
photo by Nevil Lazarus

Superb Lyrebird, Victoria, Australia
photo by Fir0002/Flagstaffotos

Snowy Egret
by David Hall, United States Fish and Wildlife Service

European Bee-eater, France. The female awaits the offering which the male will make.
photo by Pierre Dalous

A Silvereye (Zosterops lateralis), Tasmania, Australia
photo by JJ Harrison

Southern Crowned Pigeon (Goura scheepmakeri)
photo by Luc Viatour

A Perched Long-billed Corella (Cacatua (Licmetis) tenuirostris)
photo by JJ Harrison

Long-tailed Broadbill (Psarisomus dalhousiae), Thailand
photo by JJ Harrison

Crested Tern (Thalasseus bergii), in breeding plumage, Tasmania, Australia
photo by JJ Harrison

“In order to see birds it is necessary to become a part of the silence.”
~Robert Lynd

How to Bird Watch, from WikiHow
All About Birds, from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology
Birdwatching Apps
Birdwatching Daily
Birding Blog List

The post title is from a quote:
“…I keep looking for one more teacher, only to find that fish learn from the water and birds learn from the sky.”
~Mark Nepo

Monday, June 17, 2013

St. Joan, Horrible Histories Style

Whatever thing men call great, look for it in Joan of Arc, and there you will find it.
~Mark Twain

* Horrible Histories on the BBC
* The Wikipedia entry about the TV series, with details about the shows.
* A tip of the hat to Melissa Wiley, who led me to this by pointing out a Horrible Histories song about Charles Dickens.
* From University of Pittsburgh's Voices Across Time: American History through Music
* Time Out London made a list of 100 songs that changed history
* World History through Heavy Metal Songs
* The History for Music Lovers YouTube channel

Friday, June 14, 2013

Poetry & Plagiarism

In the 1st century, the use of the Latin word "plagiarius" (literally "kidnapper"), to denote someone stealing someone else's work, was pioneered by Roman poet Martial, who complained that another poet had "kidnapped his verses." This use of the word was introduced into English in 1601 by dramatist Ben Jonson, to describe as a "plagiary" someone guilty of literary theft.
~"Plagiarism," Wikipedia

Today we have a collection of articles about poetic plagiarism. I hadn't really imagined that people tried to pass off other people's poems as their own until I read about the Christian Ward case. And then I read about the David Morgan case.

My interest in the subject was piqued, so I found the other info below to share with you. One thing that gives me pause is the concept of intentional vs. unintentional plagiarism. Here's an article that discusses one variant of that -- a well-known poet gave credit to a lesser-known poet, but he didn't give her credit every time (such as when he shared the poem at readings), and some people wound up thinking she had copied him rather than vice versa.

Would love to hear what you think!

* Court fines poet Hisham Aljakh for plagiarism , Egypt Independent (June 6, 2103)
* The World's First Plagiarism Case, Plagiarism Today (October 4, 2011)
* Case Study: Tracking a Sneaky Plagiarist Poet, Plagiarism Today (October 5, 2010)
* The Accidental Plagiarist: The Trouble with Originality, Virginia Quarterly Review (2007)
* What Rhymes With, uh, Plagiarism?, New York Times (October 25, 1994)
* Prison poets caught in plagiarism bid, The Telegraph
* Incidents of children's poetry plagiarism
* Dark Poetry offers thoughts on how to protect yourself from plagiarism

Margaret has the Poetry Friday round-up today at Reflections on the Teche.

Thursday, June 13, 2013


In sorrow we must go, but not in despair. Behold! we are not bound for ever to the circles of the world, and beyond them is more than memory.
~J.R.R. Tolkien

In honor of sorrow:

The Cemetery Entrance
Caspar David Friedrich

Angel of Grief, Rome
a 1894 sculpture by William Wetmore Story
photo by Einar Einarsson Kvaran

Peasant Coffin
by Aleksander Gierymski (1850–1901)

Interior of Sint-Pauluskerk, in Antwerp, mourning angel

Mourner from the tomb of John the Fearless, between 1443 and 1470
Jean de la Huerta and Antoine Le Moiturier
photo by Shonagon

Campo Santo cemetery, Ghent
photo by Amaury Henderick

The Mourning Days
by Jan Voerman

Angel at Grave, Paris
photo by Reinhardhauke

by Peter Isselburg, Nürnberg 1616

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Shakespeare Sonnet App

TouchPress has introduced an app with performances of all Shakespeare's sonnets. Here's a sample:

Monday, June 10, 2013

See You Later

I heard this song on Heavy Rotation: 10 Songs Public Radio Can't Stop Playing and wanted to share it with you:

A link to info about this video and where to buy the album

"See you later" is a translation of the title of the song, "à tout à l’heure."

Friday, June 7, 2013

A Garden of Artists

People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us.
~Iris Murdoch

Welcome! The Poetry Friday round-up is here this week.

I've talked about postage stamps in honor of poets, poetry and movies, and other poetic intersections. Today we have flowers named for poets, writers, fictional characters, artists, and composers:

Narcissus Barrett Browning, photo by Jeff Hart

Roses named for writers are called: Agatha Christie, Alexandre Dumas, Astrid Lindgren, Charles Dickens, Chaucer, Cyrano (I don't actually know whether this rose is named for the real person or the fictional version -- probably the fictional one), Grimm, Guy de Maupassant, Hans Christian Andersen, Honoré de Balzac, Mark Twain, Victor Hugo, and William Shakespeare (two).

Chaucer Rose, photo by T. Kiya

Flowers named for characters or works (all roses except for the Don Quixote tulip): Madame Bovary, Peer Gynt, Prospero, Don Quichotte, Tess of the d'Urbervilles

Ophelia Rose, photo by Laitche

Roses named for artists include: the Albrecht Dürer rose, Auguste Renoir, Botticelli, Camille Pissarro, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Edgar Degas, Henri Matisse, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Paul Cézanne, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Rembrandt, Rodin, Rubens, Titian, and Toulouse Lautrec.

Roses named for musicians and composers: Édith Piaf (two roses), Freddie Mercury, Frederyk Chopin, Händel, Jacqueline du Pré, James Galway, Johann Strauß, Mozart, Paganini, Puccini, Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Ravel, Richard Wagner, Tchaikovski, and Verdi (two roses).

There are also flowers named for two of my favorite non-artists: Jeanne d'Arc (two-- a rose and a crocus) and Professor Einstein (rose).

A link to a poem about flowers: Astigmatism by Amy Lowell, "To Ezra Pound: with Much Friendship and Admiration and Some Differences of Opinion."

Leave a link in the comments and I will round them up!

* At Life on the Deckle Edge, Robyn has a poem by Margarita Engle from HURRICANE DANCERS.

* At The Poem Farm, Amy shares a poem about the weather in her heart...

* At TeacherDance, Linda is thinking about summer reading -- poetry!

* At Father Goose, Charles is pondering What Flies?

* Liz offers an original poem, "The First Day of Summer."

* Mary Lee has a poem for the day after the last day of school.

* It's also time to fill the July-Dec Poetry Friday Roundup Host calendar.

* At NC Teacher Stuff, Jeff shares an original poem about the last day of school.

* Laura Purdie Salas is in with a J. Patrick Lewis poem.

* At Author Amok, Laura Shovan celebrates poetry with Northfield ES third graders.

* Tara's contribution today is a poem to celebrate baseball (and the Red Sox).

* At Today's Little Ditty, Michelle has a video by Ingrid Michaelson to tickle your fancy.

* Jama is featuring What's in the Garden? and announcing the winner of the Wordsworth! Stop the Bulldozer! giveaway.

* At Random Noodling, Diane offers a post about beer.

* Kurious Kitty spotlights a poem by Lucille Clifton.

* KK's Kwotes has an old chestnut from Emily Dickinson.

* Margaret shares a guest poet today, Sandra Sarr, who wrote a Terza Rima in the style of Natasha Trethewey.

* At Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme, Matt is thinking about tending his lawn.

* At Poetry for Children, Sylvia highlights sharing poetry on a recent school visit in Bali.

* Catherine shares "Ox Cart Man" by Donald Hall.

* At Live Your Poem, Irene has Five for Poetry Friday.

* Iza's offering is "The Bee Boy's Song" by Rudyard Kipling.

* Anastasia shares an original poem, "Friday Love."

* At There is no such thing as a God-forsaken town, Ruth has "Dropping Keys" by Hafiz.

* Dori focuses on crossing genres, with French horns and fairy tales, along with some poetry.

* Violet's post is an original poem written for David Harrison's word-of-month prompt 'harrumph.'

* At Gathering Books, Fats shares a poem by Li-Young Lee about the sound of apples falling to the ground.

* Donna has 4 original wondery poems for kids at heart.

* Lorie Ann offers Blue Branches, a haiku, at On Point.

* Ms Mac contributes an original tritina.

* Keri is in today with an original poem about volunteer plants in the garden.

* At Tapestry of Words, Becky shares a poem about endings.

* Betsy at I Think in Poems brings us "Burned," an original poem.

* At Musings, Joyce Ray is thinking of graduates as she shares Earth Your Dancing Place by May Swenson.

* Janet tells us about "Whisper and Shout: Poems to Memorize" edited by Patrice Vecchione.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

It Was All Yellow

Fame stole my yellow. Yellow is the color you get when you're real and brutally honest. Yellow is with my kids...The bundle of bright yellow warming my core, formerly frozen and uninhabitable...They got yellow from me, and I felt yellow giving it to them and it was all good...So, why am I leaving my show? It took my yellow. I wanted it back. Without it I can't live. The gray kills me.
~Rosie O'Donnell

Themes for Art Thursday can be anything. For instance, mustaches, Frankenstein, opera, the Great Fire of London, monkeys, The Tempest. Sometimes, the theme is a color. Today, we have gult (Icelandic), gelb (German), դեղին գույն (Armenian), 黄色 (Japanese), melyn (Welsh), yellow:

Montreux 1983
by Keith Haring

Kitchen in the Mount House, Stony Brook
by William Sidney Mount

The Golden Fish
by Paul Klee

Profile of a Young Woman
by Aristide Maillol

Rain, Steam and Speed - The Great Western Railway
by J. M. W. Turner

Ancient of Days
by William Blake

by Paul Klee

Couple Walking
by Pablo Picasso

Beach at Boulogne
by Edouard Manet

by Ivan Milev

More color posts: Purple and Orange
The title is from Yellow by Coldplay.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Hungarian Dance #5

I wish I could write to you as tenderly as I love you and tell you all the good things that I wish you. You are so infinitely dear to me, dearer than I can say... If things go on much longer as they are at present I shall have sometime to put you under glass or to have you set in gold. If only I could live in the same town with you and my parents... Do write me a nice letter soon. Your letters are like kisses.
~ Johannes Brahms, letter to Clara Schumann (31 May 1856)

Out of all Brahms' work, his most famous might be his lullaby:

Lullaby and good night,
With roses bedight,
With lilies o'er spread
Is baby's wee bed.
Lay thee down now and rest,
May thy slumber be blessed.
~ Wiegenlied: Guten Abend, gute Nacht

For Music Monday, though, I'll share a personal favorite:

To me, Brahms' eyes look intelligent and thoughtful. But before we get too sentimental about him, I'll leave you with one last quote:

If there is anyone here whom I have not insulted, I beg his pardon.
~Johannes Brahms