Monday, June 24, 2019

Oh, simple thing

Love is a friendship set to music.
~Joseph Campbell

Two pretty videos for Music Monday. Drax Project:

Reneé Dominique:

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Gliding into another day

Although written many years ago, Lady Chatterley's Lover has just been reissued by Grove Press, and this fictional account of the day-by-day life of an English gamekeeper is still of considerable interest to outdoor-minded readers, as it contains many passages on pheasant-raising, the apprehending of poachers, ways to control vermin, and other chores and duties of the professional gamekeeper. Unfortunately, one is obliged to wade through many pages of extraneous material in order to discover and savour these sidelights on the management of a Midland shooting estate, and in this reviewer's opinion this book cannot take the place of J. R. Miller's Practical Gamekeeping.
~Ed Zern

Matthew, my resident food photographer and the recipient of my Tummy Tamer glycerite, has read over a dozen books since the end of spring semester. (He's in a graduate program, which expects at least 40 hours of study a week.) The only ones that he's grumbled about are by D.H. Lawrence. Lawrence's prose might sometimes be a slog, but his poetry is much more manageable. Colorful imagist poems by D.H. Lawrence:

photo by Trisha Shears

excerpt from Butterfly
by D.H. Lawrence

Will you go, will you go from my warm house?
Will you climb on your big soft wings, black-dotted,
as up an invisible rainbow, an arch
till the wind slides you sheer from the arch-crest
and in a strange level fluttering you go
out to sea-ward, white speck!


excerpt from Grey Evening
by D.H. Lawrence

Dim lamps like yellow poppies glimmer among
The shadowy stubble of the under-dusk,
As farther off the scythe of night is swung,
And little stars come rolling from their husk.


by D.H. Lawrence

The dawn was apple-green,
The sky was green wine held up in the sun,
The moon was a golden petal between.

She opened her eyes, and green
They shone, clear like flowers undone,
For the first time, now for the first time seen.


excerpt from Blue
by D.H. Lawrence

The earth again like a ship steams out of the dark sea over
The edge of the blue, and the sun stands up to see us glide
Slowly into another day; slowly the rover
Vessel of darkness takes the rising tide.

I, on the deck, am startled by this dawn confronting
Me who am issued amazed from the darkness, stripped
And quailing here in the sunshine, delivered from haunting
The night unsounded whereon our days are shipped.


Nothing to Save
by D.H. Lawrence

There is nothing to save, now all is lost,
but a tiny core of stillness in the heart
like the eye of a violet.


A Word Edgewise has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Linda!

Beauchamp-Feuillet notation

Sometimes in life confusion tends to arise and only dialogue of dance seems to make sense.
-Shah Asad Rizvi

For Art Thursday, something you might not have seen before...choreography notation! From Public Domain Review:
[These images are from] Choregraphie, a book first published in 1700 which details a dance notation system invented in the 1680s at the court of Louis XIV. Its author, Raoul-Auger Feuillet, was maître de danse of the French King. In 1704 another maître de danse, Pierre Beauchamp, filed a formal complaint, arguing that Feuillet had taken credit for what was in fact Beauchamp’s invention. The system, which survived in modified forms into the 1780s, is now known as Beauchamp-Feuillet notation. It indicates the placement of the feet and six basic leg movements: plié, releveé, sauté, cabriole, tombé, and glissé.

Images from Choregraphie by Raoul-Auger Feuillet:

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Tummy Tamer

In recent years, scientists have discovered that the GI system has an even bigger, more complex job than previously appreciated. It’s been linked to numerous aspects of health that have seemingly nothing to do with digestion, from immunity to emotional stress to chronic illnesses, including cancer and Type 2 diabetes.
~Amanda MacMillan for Time Magazine

I talked about keeping your digestion happy before on Wellness Wednesday (here) but I wanted to revisit the topic because I recently made this Tummy Tamer glycerite for someone in my household. He definitely likes it...not sure whether it is helping his digestion or he likes the taste but I think maybe it's both :-) I winged it a bit based on what I had, feel free to mess with the recipe. Don't worry about leaving out an ingredient (unless it's the glycerin!). Carry on.

Also, here's Rosalee de la Forêt showing how to make digestive pastilles:

The Time Magazine gut health article (from the top quote)
Mountain Rose Herbs' 3 herbal digestion recipes

Monday, June 17, 2019

On a Summer Breeze

Listen to tbe Bee Gees and you can learn to be a great writer.
~Kara DioGuardi

How Deep is Your Love this Music Monday. I think the bit about "living in a world of fools, breaking us down when they all should let us be" resonates with people on a lot of levels. Singing about it makes you feel better, no?

PJ Morton:

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Distant oceans

Ocean is more ancient than the mountains, and freighted with the memories and the dreams of Time.
~H. P. Lovecraft

When I was unsure about what to post this Poetry Friday, I turned to books from the library. The first book fell short rather substantially, but Linda Pastan did not disappoint. I couldn't find some of the poems online so I could send you to read the rest, but here are two that I did:

Marine chronometer
photo by Daderot

Ship's Clock
by Linda Pastan

The ship’s clock, stowed in a box
for its passage to the beach each summer,
continues to chime every four hours
(first watch ... dog watch ... )
inside the cedar closet.

I look up from my desk and wonder
what that rounded sound could be,
then remember the clock,
all polished brass, still marking
the watches of a distant ocean.

read the rest here


“Adam And Eve,” By Lucas Cranach the Elder, 1526
by Linda Pastan

The snake is a quicksilver curve
on a branch she is almost
young enough to swing from.

read the rest here


Laura Shovan has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Laura!


Life has loveliness to sell,
Music like a 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.
~from Barter by Sara Teasdale

Every Day Poems shared Sara Teasdale's Barter the other day and that's what made me think of featuring gold for Art Thursday.

Egyptian ring, between 1150 and 1069 BC

Chapel Roof; Krakow Cathedral mkII in Kraków, Poland
photo by -wit-

Gilded statues of mythological beings of the Himpahan-Forest at the Wat Phra Kaew in Bangkok (Thailand). In the foreground an Apsornsi, half woman, half lion. In the background a Kinnorn, half man, half bird.
photo by Manfred Werner

Pouring Liquid Gold
photo by Dan Brown, London

James Webb Space Telescope's mirrors are covered in a microscopically thin layer of gold, which optimizes them for reflecting infrared light, which is the primary wavelength of light this telescope will observe.
Image credit: NASA/Goddard/Chris Gunn

1981 24 karat gold plated DeLorean, William F Harrah Foundation National Automobile Museum in Reno, Nevada

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Tiny houses

Less is more.
~Mies Van Der Rohe

To be honest, I am not a minimalist. My daughter Elena said recently, "Mom, you couldn't fit your teas in a tiny house." Guilty as charged, but I like to see people's tiny houses. (I can imagine someday having a backyard with a tiny house in it for guests.) There's something wonderful about how personalized they are. When you are working with such a small space, every decision you make about what you put in it has purpose and is meaningful for you.

Living Big in a Tiny House

Monday, June 10, 2019

Sing it with me

I believe that singing is the key to long life, a good figure, a stable temperament, increased intelligence, new friends, super self-confidence, heightened sexual attractiveness, and a better sense of humor.
~Brian Eno

JP Cooper featuring Astrid S for Music Monday:

Thursday, June 6, 2019

A fiery ball

The throat is a road.
~Amy Gerstler

I am typing this while having a bit of vertigo. (Ugh!) It's Wednesday morning, so I should be feeling better by the time you read this! My gosh I hope so. I have things to do! Graduations to watch! Poetry by Amy Gerstler today.
(Updated to add that I felt better in time to drive someone to the airport later that morning. Yay for quick turnarounds! No time to feel bad around here, for sure.)

An excerpt from Hoffnung
by Amy Gerstler

...If mother earth only knew how much we
loved one another she would creak, shudder,

and split like a macheted melon, releasing
the fiery ball of molten hope at her core.


Advice from a Caterpillar
by Amy Gerstler

Chew your way into a new world.
Munch leaves. Molt. Rest. Molt
again. Self-reinvention is everything.
Spin many nests. Cultivate stinging
bristles. Don’t get sentimental
about your discarded skins...

read the rest here


photo by Elke Mader

Bon Courage
By Amy Gerstler

Why are the woods so alluring? A forest appears
to a young girl one morning as she combs
the dreams out of   her hair. The trees rustle
and whisper, shimmer and hiss. The forest
opens and closes, a door loose on its hinges,
banging in a strong wind. Everything in the dim
kitchen: the basin, the jug, the skillet, the churn,
snickers scornfully. In this way a maiden
is driven toward the dangers of a forest,
but the forest is our subject, not this young girl.

read the rest here


Another poem by Amy Gerstler: Dear Reader


Michelle Kogan has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Michelle!


The night, gallops on its shadowy mare
Shedding blue tassels over the land.
~Pablo Neruda

To be honest, I am not really a tassel person. (I don't generally have the urge to buy stuff with tassels on them.) But my daughter Elena is graduating from high school tomorrow and I have been making tassels out of tissue paper for a banner, so I am in a tassel-y mood.

A Handbook of Ornament (1898)

Gdańsk. Dom Uphagena
photo by Piotrus

Pongauer Festtagshut mit Goldstickerei (ausgestellt in Annakapelle St Johann im Pongau)
photo by Niki.L

Boy's frock
India, Kashmir, for the Western market, circa 1855

Mace "Assumption of Our Lady," Moscow

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Little pep talks

If Hamilton were on Twitter, he would have been a worse oversharer than me.
~Lin-Manuel Miranda

For Wellness Wednesday, excerpts (tweets) from GMORNING, GNIGHT! little pep talks for me & you by Lin-Manuel Miranda, illustrated by Jonny Sun.

Miranda explains how this book came to be in a poetic foreword. Here are a couple of verses from the foreword:

I don’t have a book of quotations
Or wisdom I pull from the shelf;
Most often the greetings I wish you
Are the greetings I wish for myself.

So if I write “relax,” then I’m nervous,
Or if I write, “cheer up,” then I’m blue.
I’m writing what I wish somebody would say,
Then switching the pronoun to you.


Good morning.
You are perfectly cast in your life.
I can't imagine anyone but you in the role.
Go play.


Woke up achy & sad? Not alone.
Woke up w/purpose & joy? Not alone.
Any way you slice it, you're not alone.
Let's go.


Good morning.
Everything could change today.
Or one tiny, vital thing.
What it WON'T be is a re-run of yesterday.
Let's see.


Good morning.
Your mind is your home and no one else's.
Furnish it as you wish.
Set the temp so you're comfortable.


*ties one end of this sentence to your heart, the other end to everyone who loves you in this life, even if clouds obscure your view*
*checks knots*


Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Breathing easy in summer

Being tall is an advantage, especially in business. People will always remember you. And if you're in a crowd, you'll always have some clean air to breathe.
~Julia Child

The Breathe Easy campaign encourages residents to help reduce ground-level ozone and keep everyone breathing easy all summer by following these simple steps:

* Use public transit
* Telecommute or carpool
* Wait until dusk to refuel your car
* Inflate your tires to the proper level
* Turn off lights and electronics when not in use
* Clean HVAC filters each month
* Use a gas or electric grill instead of charcoal
* Use an electric-powered lawn mower
* Download the Clean Air Partners App to check daily air quality levels in your area

To learn more about the Breathe Easy campaign and learn how you can join the thousands who have already pledged to make a difference, visit and follow them on Facebook and Twitter @CleanAirPartner.

Monday, June 3, 2019

Go Slow

I go with the flow. Whatever music you play for me, I'll dance.
~Gael Garcia Bernal

A bop for Music Monday from Gorgon City:

Thursday, May 30, 2019


We dropped our troubles into the lap of the storyteller, and they turned into someone else's.
~Naomi Shihab Nye

Happy Naomi Shihab Nye week! I wrote a poem inspired by The Art of Disappearing, but it needed fixing and I wasn't sure how to fix it. So I tried again, this time inspired by Shoulders. My poem also has a road in it, although they aren't trying to cross:

Dog Walking
by Tabatha Yeatts

The man and dog amble
along a route they've traveled before,
the drooping black leash
only one of many links between them,

and as they turn a corner where
they will head gently uphill,
the dog decides for the first time
to lie down on that spot,

long furry body across the
sidewalk like it was a bed.
The cars at the intersection
continue to stop and go,

but the dog only stops.
The man, still holding
the utterly idle leash,
looks down at the large hairy beast,

and looks up again, scanning
his fellow humans as they walk past
as if seeking someone to help him
with this surprisingly difficult family member

but no one can,
it's just him and his lying-down dog
who has decided that
there will be no more steps

without a break
and here is as good a place
as any other.
The man shrugs and crouches

to ruffle the dog's head
accepting that his plan
has suddenly changed,
his routine remade, and

love is the only constant here.


A Year of Reading has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Mary Lee!

Pickled Beauty

One of the smartest things you can do on 'Chopped' is to take one of those ingredients and make a pickle out of it, because almost every dish benefits from that.
~Ted Allen

Here at Art Thursday, the topic possibilities are endless. I am not sure what made today's subject come to mind, but I have been thinking about food photography because my daughter's boyfriend and I are working on a low histamine cookbook (which will not include pickled items, as vinegar is out of bounds for my daughter's low histamine diet).

Have you tried pickled vegetables other than cucumber? Have you tried pickled fruits? You can pickle anything (as the links at the bottom will explain).

Gulerødder og bolsjebeder med estragon og æbleeddike
By cyclonebill from Copenhagen, Denmark

Skansen w Sierpcu
By MOs810

Views around Teyrawa Bazaar in Erbil
By Levi Clancy

Melothria scabra frais mis dans un bocal en vue d'être lactofermenté
By Corey Ryan Hanson

Barrels of Pickles, circa 1945
By OSU Special Collections & Archives

Kostroma Market 14 Pickles
By michael clarke stuff

Marv med syltede grøntsager
By cyclonebill

How to Pickle Anything
A Formula for Perfectly Pickled Fruits and Veg
6 Quick Pickle Recipes with Fruit

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Bridging gaps

Follow your dreams, they know the way.
~Kobe Yamada

My second-cousin-in-law gave this TEDx talk, which seemed like good Wellness Wednesday food for thought. The beginning is a little cut off (it's not you, it's the recording):

Monday, May 27, 2019

National Poetry Month Printables 2019 collection

The National Poetry Month printables from April 2019 are collected here. There's also a literary Take One poster down below.



In the past I've featured fictional characters' favorite poems and poems about imaginary places. This year, I'm offering FREE poetry printables.

Kicking things off is a pdf for Poetry in the Halls featuring poems by Linda Baie, Michelle Heidenrich Barnes, Robyn Hood Black, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Matt Forrest Esenwine, Charles Ghigna, Mary Lee Hahn, Michelle Kogan, Irene Latham, JoAnn Early Macken, Diane Mayr, O.V. Michaelsen, Heidi Mordhorst, Christina Rossetti, Masaoka Shiki, and me.

Print out these ledger-sized poems and put them up in your school hallways, library, or other poetry-inviting place! Laminate them if you can :-) Came back later to say: Just saw them mounted on colored construction paper and they look great that way, too!

Addendum: I forgot that I have a Poetry in the Halls response form! I've been coordinating this program in various elementary, middle, and high schools for maybe a dozen years now and some years we had prizes for responses. You might want to have the kids respond without giving prizes. Here's the link to the form. (If you want the doc. file so you can change it, email me.)



Where is Peace? was inspired by writing a month of peace poems in February. When you are writing one a day, you wind up thinking about peace from many angles.

Where is peace? What does peace feel like? Is it where we feel safe, is it helping others? Can we find it in nature? Can we make it ourselves? With this printable, I imagine that a class could take a few minutes to make the mini-book and then write their own peace poem. I'm hoping that the printable will free them to find peace in many places.

Where is peace? poetry printable

First, cut off the white spaces around the edges. Then, follow along with this video:

(You can also visit this video by Sylvia Vardell)



Do you remember Greg Pincus's fibs? In 2006, Greg popularized Fibonacci poems a.k.a. "Fibs": six-line poems which use the Fibonacci sequence to dictate the number of syllables in each line (1-1-2-3-5-8).

The Fibonacci sequence is a mathematical pattern in which the first two numbers are zero and one. To figure out the next number in the sequence, you always add the two previous numbers. So it goes like this:

0+1= 1
1+1= 2
1+2= 3
2+3= 5
3+5= 8
5+8= 13
13+8= 21
and it just keeps going.

You don't have to stop at 6 lines -- you can have a 7th line with 13 syllables, an 8th line with 21 syllables, etc., or you can make your Fib longer by going back down (i.e. 1-1-2-3-5-8-5-3-2-1-1).

The Grammar Fib printable includes grammar-themed fibs and space to write your own:

Grammar Fibs printable



When I was looking up what teachers' favorite printables are, "blank newsletter template" came up. I wondered how to make that poetry-related and came up with The Poetry Times.

My idea was that students could interview one another, either about their experience of being poets or about their favorite poems. There could also be guest interviewees, such as librarians, principals, P.E. teachers, etc. answering questions about their favorite poems.

If students have already been writing poetry in class, you're set. If they've already been reading poetry in class, same thing. If they haven't, you can take your class on a reading excursion to the school library or you can bring poetry books into your classroom. The students could explore the books, looking for potential favorite poems. I'm including a printable "favorites list" worksheet so they can take notes about their potential favorites as they are searching. (If you have poetry up in your halls, you could take the class on a "field trip" to read those!) After the students have lists, they can interview each other and write up their responses in their own newsletter.

Here is The Poetry Times collection:

* The Poetry Times template (The top section of the newsletter can include a poem, an illustration, and/or a drawing of a book cover. The other two sections are for interviews, but do what you like!)
* Student Poet interview form (Generally for students interviewing their fellow students about their experiences as poets, but they can also use the forms to interview the teacher.)
* Favorite Poem interview form (with figurative language info on the back)
* Potential Favorites List worksheet

Speaking of illustrations, if you would ever like to use Poetry Monster images for your projects, the gallery is here.



"Take One" or "Take What You Need" posters are fun, they're cheerful, they're something a little out-of-the-ordinary. (You can have anything you want on them. I've seen posters that just say, "Have you seen this poster?" and all the little slips at the bottom say, "yes.")

Once they have been printed out, the little sections at the bottom need to be cut apart so people can easily take one. Then the top can be taped to a wall or stapled/push pinned to a bulletin board or any place you'd put a flyer.

Take What You Need: Literary Edition

A Song for You

What I can do for my country, I am willing to do.
~Christopher Gadsden

For Memorial Day, I am tempted to share "Take Care of This House" again because in my heart, I'm still sounding the alarm. Let's mix it up, though, with a song that Whitney Houston sang for returning soldiers. There are a lot of great versions of this song. I'm going with Donny Hathaway:

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Unknown until it is finished

My parents elected me president of the family when I was 4. We actually had an election every year, and I always won. I'm an only child, and I could count on my mother's vote. ~Condoleezza Rice

I wonder what Condoleeza did as president? Did she offer longer recess? I'm an only child, but we never had elections. Hope you enjoy this excerpt of "Only Child" by Dennis Nurkse. Click the link to read the rest.

Only Child
by D. Nurkse


In the park the child says:
watch me. It will not count
unless you see. And she shows me
the cartwheel, the skip, the tumble,
the tricks performed at leisure in midair,
each unknown until it is finished.

read the rest here


More by D. Nurkse:
The Chime
Psalm to Be Read with Closed Eyes

Doing the Work that Matters has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Dani!


If you hit a wrong note, then make it right by what you play afterwards…
~Joe Pass

Sometimes when I am at a classical music concert, I will look at the double basses and wonder which color I would pick if I played. I never can decide. What is your favorite?

Duo Feuerholz: Angela Stummer/harp and Thomas Stempkowski/double bass (Vienna, Austria)
photo by Manfred Werner (Tsui)

1957 H.N. White King Mortone Double Bass with Original Blonde Finish
photo by David Price

Bass viol, Barak Norman, 1713, Museu de la Música de Barcelona
photo by Enfo

Contrabass, Cellos, Deutsches Museum
photo by Andrew Plumb

photo by Luisalvaz

Bass, Mexico
photo by Rod Waddington

More quotes:

Flea: The most incredible thing about the upright bass—the few times I’ve played one—is the way you can feel the whole thing vibrate when you have it up against your body. It’s like your body is resonating with the instrument. It’s a very fulfilling feeling.

Charlie Haden: It is! That’s why I stand so close to the instrument when I play. I put my head next to it. One night in 1959 I was playing at the Five Spot with Ornette, Don Cherry, and Billy Higgins, and I always play with my eyes closed—but I opened my eyes, and there was some guy onstage with his ear next to my ƒ-hole. And I was like, “Who is this guy?” And Ornette was like, “That’s Leonard Bernstein!” And I was like, “Okay . . . .”

Wednesday, May 22, 2019


Singing is like a celebration of oxygen.

Hi folks! I wasn't sure I was going to be able to post today...I have been getting a lot of input and wasn't sure I could manage any output. In other words, I'm overstimulated and having a hard time concentrating. Then I thought I could tell you about a couple of things we've done lately.

For Elena's high school graduation, we sent out some blank advice cards with her announcements. They weren't completely blank -- they said things like,
"Be prepared to _____________"
"Always keep _______________"
"Don't be afraid to ____________"
It has been such fun getting them back! I included self-addressed stamped envelopes to make it easier to reply (and we only sent them to people we thought would want to do it because we didn't want to pressure anybody.)

On Dash's birthday, he was overseas and couldn't really receive presents because he was worried about being able to fit them in his suitcase (and he was going to be home the following week anyway). I didn't want to not send him anything, though, so we made a special birthday e-card. First, we made signs that each had a different word of a birthday message. Then various family members went the schools he's attended (starting with preschool!) to take photos of themselves with the signs. He didn't realize it, but his girlfriend also took a picture of herself with him in the background, so he got to be on his own card :-)

I am pretty into celebrating and it has caught on with our kids. For instance, we pick a theme for each person's birthday. My husband's birthday theme this year was The Blues Brothers, which was fun. We had a Blues Brothers concert poster up, a sign that said, "We're on a mission from God," a t-shirt for Ray's Music Exchange, a key from the Plymouth Hotel, a mini Bluesmobile, etc. Picking themes that aren't things you could find at Party City forces us be inventive.

That's all I've got for now! If you have any ideas, please share :-)

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Well-nigh in the clouds

If I were going to prom again, I would wear a huge skirt and plain cotton tank. A big, poofy, flotation-device-sized skirt. I wish I had done that.
~Leandra Medine

Happy Poetry Friday! I tried to find a poem that matched what is going on in our household (This weekend one of my kids is going to prom and one is coming home from a semester in Germany.) There is a surprising dearth of poems about prom. I did find this video, which mixes dance and Germany, calling itself a "cinematic poem":

I love this poem by Jan Wagner, translated from German by Iain Galbraith:


make yourself heavier, they call. i close
both eyes, thinking
of sacks of cement, iron foundries
and elephants, an anchor sinking

in deep mud while a fleet of whales
manoeuvres above it, an anvil’s
bullish head. for a while
i hold my breath and wait. to no avail:

read the rest here

Two more:
TEA-BAG by Jan Wagner
QUINCES by Jan Wagner


Reflections on the Teche has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Margaret!


Do you have hands? Excellent. That's a good start. Can you hold a pencil? Great. If you have a sketchbook, open it and start by making a line, a mark, wherever. Doodle.
~Chris Riddell

Images from Hamonshu: A Japanese Book of Wave and Ripple Designs (1903) for Art Thursday. These seem like they could be good for doodling or zentangles (should I capitalize "zentangle"?).

A couple of posts that mention Zentangles (I'm capitalizing it this time, just in case).

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Being the other half

When you're on stage, the audience becomes your other half.
~Laura Branigan

For Wellness Wednesday, enjoying watching people do what they love:

Goldstar, discount tickets to live events
TodayTix, for last minute tickets
The music in the video above is by Stromae

Monday, May 13, 2019

The Good and the Bad

Love is a fire. But whether it is going to warm your hearth or burn down your house, you can never tell.
~Joan Crawford

In my apparently ongoing "songs from the radio" series, we have Good As You by Kane Brown, and a bonus that wasn't on the radio but Elena played for me while we were in the car:

Lake Street Dive:

Thursday, May 9, 2019

The baton has given the signal

Happy Poetry Friday! I don't often have my act together enough to talk about holidays in a timely way. And today is no exception. I wanted to show you how to make poetry-themed tea bags because I thought they might be a pretty Mother's Day gift, but I don't have any coffee filters to make a sample one. Here's what they look like (minus the theoretical poetry I was going to have):

I didn't make these!
This image is from the instructions page.

Moving on to a couple of poems, plus a reminder that this is your last chance to sign up for the Summer Poetry Swap.


“lands” from Salt
by Nayyirah Waheed

My mother was
my first country,
The first place I
ever lived.


excerpt of To Think of Time from Leaves of Grass
by Walt Whitman

It is not to diffuse you that you were born of your mother and father,
it is to identify you,

It is not that you should be undecided, but that you should be decided,
Something long preparing and formless is arrived and form'd in you,
You are henceforth secure, whatever comes or goes.

The threads that were spun are gather'd, the weft crosses the warp,
the pattern is systematic.

The preparations have every one been justified,
The orchestra have sufficiently tuned their instruments, the baton
has given the signal.

The guest that was coming, he waited long, he is now housed,
He is one of those who are beautiful and happy, he is one of those
that to look upon and be with is enough.


The Poetry Friday round-up is at Elizabeth Steinglass's blog. Thanks, Liz!

The Proper Art of Writing

Calligraphy is the art of putting the brush on paper properly and then accurately removing it.

For Art Thursday, pages from the German book The Proper Art of Writing (1655). The full title is The Proper Art of Writing: a compilation of all sorts of capital or initial letters of German, Latin and Italian fonts from different masters of the noble art of writing. As you can see, they are often more interestingly intricate than they are legible!

The Proper Art of Writing: