Thursday, April 30, 2020

Taylor's Shots

As a newly diagnosed Type 1, I would now have to attempt to do from the outside of my body, what was intended to be done from the inside.
~Meredith Wimberly

A Things I Wish You Knew poem for kids today about type 1 diabetes.

Taylor's Shots

A girl named Taylor likes to run,
likes to dribble a ball with her feet,
She likes to do things you like to do,
likes to eat foods you like to eat.

She has diabetes, the type 1 kind,
which isn't about having sweets.
You wouldn't guess she has T1D
if you passed her on the street.

Her immune system wrecks her beta cells,
so she needs shots on repeat.
Those shots contain insulin
to make her cells complete.

A kid poking herself with a needle
might seem like an amazing feat--
but Taylor is used to taking care
since it's not safe to skip or cheat.

If you're lucky enough to meet Taylor,
she's a friend who can't be beat!

-Tabatha Yeatts


Many thanks to the real-life Taylor and her parents for their input about what they wish people knew. JDRF has extensive info about type 1 diabetes on their site.


Elizabeth Steinglass has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Liz!

Poetry surrounds us

It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.
~Henry David Thoreau

Today, I have another colorblock zine (magazine made of one sheet of paper). I wasn't sure whether this should be a Poetry Friday post or Art Thursday, but since it is a quote by an artist, here we are!

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Take-Away Menu

I've always had the strong desire to have a take-away from life events -- a life lesson or wisdom gleaned.
~Bridget Magee

I love a good creative family project, and ones that are also helpful to the community? Even better! American poet in Switzerland Bridget Magee and her daughter have been making free ecards. She says:
To keep in touch with family and friends, Maureen and I have been doing a drawing-a-day together using the YouTube drawing tutorial sites (most were DrawSoCute videos) and then emailing them to family and friends. They have been well received and having your teenage daughter want to draw beside you day after day of self isolation is a pandemic win!

Then inspiration struck! What if I combine my desire for take away, my desire to help, the desire to share Maureen and my pictures, my love of poetry and the efficiency of email into one big project?

Ta-da! I present to you my Pandemic Poetry Take Away Ecard Extravaganza!
Here is the Take Away Menu (picture + poem = ecard love). Would you like some dessert, a snack, or some lunch?

white or dark
chocolate piece
melts slowly over my
tongue as I thank the Swiss
kindred spirits whose love for
chocolate is as mountainous as mine

©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


     all cheese
     in the land of Swiss
     is Swiss cheese
     dairy bliss

     ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


     we eat PB&J
     scoop, spread, chew
     mnest mnandwich memer
     mouth stuck like glue

     ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


      A dab of...

      A 'good' fat
      Vitamins C, E, K, and B-6
      Oil for cooking and cosmetics
      Creamy texture
      Actually a fruit

      ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


      fresh fillings
      spicy taste
      twin tacos
      shelled embrace

      ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


      dry ingredients
      combined with wet
      mix thoroughly
      forget the baguette

      hot griddle
      flip each side
      golden syrup
      home plate slide

  ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


      Pi or pie

      ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


      I wear a halo of fiery light,
      while being a sweet delight.

      You eat me on your special day,
      to celebrate your aging - hooray!

      I give you great pleasure,
      and memories to treasure,

      who am I?

      A: ǝʞɐɔ ʎɐpɥʇɹıq ɐ

      ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


      No yolk,
      after this is over
      let's do breakfast.
      We're meant to be together.

       ©2020, Bridget Magee. All Rights Reserved.


Email your Pandemic Poetry Take Away order to and she will send you as many JPEG picture/poems as you would like to send on to the special people in your life. And for every drawing + poem you "order," Bridget will donate to No Kid

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Healing heart

All he did was love the cats, and that love multiplied and multiplied again.
~The Cat Man of Aleppo

Thank you to Jan Godown Annino for sharing her TIWYK poem with us today!

“In Syria”

In Syria
as people raced death

weapons raining fire

I didn’t know of a man who
stayed put

but now
because of a book

I know he stayed behind
to care for cats

and because he cared
for mere orphan cats

chastised his acts

but I'd like you to know
that in fact

our World has looked
longer, with more love

at his ancient city
seeing humanity

viewing compassionately
a cat shelter

a place of
huge heart

that, in helping
abandoned cats

helps war

who are not

c.2020 Jan Godown Annino

Children are emotionally healed through the cat-sheltering work of the individual who has become known worldwide as The Cat Man of Aleppo. When news reports aired of Mohammed Alaa Aljaleel’s quest to rescue cats surviving war in his ancient town, Aleppo, critics scoffed at his work on behalf of mere cats.

But in the eyes of the world's children, especially fleeing families who knew refugee centers didn't accept pets, he became a hero.

Poetry Friday’s Irene Latham has created, with her friend, Syrian native Karim Shamsi-Basha and with artist Yuko Shimizu, the illustrated story, CAT MAN OF ALEPPO.

You can learn about ongoing healing-from-war work, which includes helping children, at Ernesto’s Sanctuary for Syrian Cats (Ernesto was the name of a beloved cat of one of the center’s founders). You can read an insightful interview, which touches on why helping animal victims of war, also helps people, at School Library Journal.

Monday, April 27, 2020


Whenever i find myself losing faith in humanity, i come back to the classical music. They are a great reminder that we are also able to produce beautiful things made out of strong and barely controllable emotions.
~Efrat Cybulkiewicz

More at-home performances for Music Monday.

This beautiful rendition of Edward Elgar's “Nimrod” is by the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra:

A Hope for the Future, a new song written by Matt Catingub in tribute to health care specialists dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, was performed 30 of the world’s most celebrated trumpet players.

Sunday, April 26, 2020


My life was my life; I would have to stare it down, somehow, and make it work for me.
~Paula McLain

Many thanks to Kat Apel for letting me share her TIWYK poem today.

Kat says:
This poem was inspired by my mum, who was diagnosed with bladder cancer over 7 years ago. Within two months, Mum had radical surgery to remove the tumours – and her bladder.

At the time the cystectomy was first discussed, I remember reeling, wondering how could a person live without a bladder? Now I know, you cannot just live without a bladder, but you can also love life!

Please click on the image to make it bigger...

For bladder cancer resources: CancerCare.

Saturday, April 25, 2020


"A Bee is an exquisite Chymist" [chemist]
~Royal Beekeeper to Charles II

I think zines are super cute (Austin Kleon's stay home, make zines are great) so I decided to make some "colorblock" ones. Here's my first one:

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Boat Adrift

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.

A big thank you to Linda Mitchell for sharing her "Things I Wish You Knew" poem with us today.

I wish you knew

I am a rowboat
whose bowline
has come undone.
I have drifted
away from the dock

too far, I think,
to call for help

or be seen.

When you say,
you can talk to me,
I wish you knew
I don’t know
what words will work
for you to find
me adrift,
wishing you
or someone
would pull me back,

tie me
to the safety
of my mooring
before the fog
becomes too thick.

(c) Linda Mitchell


When asked if she had a resource link she wanted to share, Linda wanted to encourage people "just please reach out to friends and loved ones." It reminded me of a post I did called "In your boat."


Wondering and Wandering has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Christie!

P.S. Last call for the Summer Poem Swap!

P.P.S. I still have more Things I Wish You Knew poems to share (from Kat, Jan, and myself), so we will be going into May. I'll share a post with links to all the TIWYK poems at the end.


Being able every once in awhile to look out the window and see your daughters during the summer, swinging on that swing set, made the presidency a little bit sweeter.
~Barack Obama

I had a tooth knocked out by a swing, and I also had a swingset fall over when I was on it, pinning me underneath. No one was around so I had to wait for someone to hear me yelling. But still, no hard feelings towards swings.

Girl standing on a swing in St. Louis, Missouri, 1914
by Marguerite Martyn

Romanesque fresco of St. Proculus in the church St. Proculus, 7th century, Naturns, South Tyrol, Italy. Notable is the wrong grip to the rope.
photo by Dietrich Krieger

A pair of swinging Remojadas figurines, Classic Veracruz culture, 300 CE to 900 CE
photo by Maurice Marcellin.

"The 5th Women Folk Plays for Dano Festival" held in a yard of the Andong Folk Museum in Andong City, Gyeongsangbuk-do, South Korea
photo by Robert

A traditional Russian swing (A Russian swing is a large, floor-mounted swing which is sometimes used in circus performances to make impressive high acrobatic jumps.)
Дж. А. Аткинсон

Kiiking (an Estonian swing sport) (I would 100% be guaranteed to puke)
Source: Eesti Kiikingi Liit

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Art Isolation project

In order to be open to creativity, one must have the capacity for constructive use of solitude.
~Rollo May

For Wellness Wednesday, a charming activity:

It's a tempting painting to copy

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

New normal

Crisis either causes regress or progress depending on the will of the people.
~Abhijit Naskar

I'd like to thank Carol Varsalona for sharing her TIWYK poem with us today.

I Wish You Knew

Self-care is of utmost concern
now, more than ever,
since life as we knew it
is suspended by threads
crisscrossing mankind.

With the rise of social distancing,
fear mounts in a muddle
of broadcasts, news articles,
and statements out-of-turn.
Today's life is upside down.

I wish you knew how lonely
the walk is, how gray skies
bring a feeling of malaise,
how children learn through
remote learning with tablets.

A new normal takes over
like a raw television series.
Pandemic fear spreads through
ghost streets as social media
becomes a haven for talk.

I wish you knew that we-ness
depends on civic responsiveness.
Self-care is a must. It starts
with a shelter-in-place mantra,
courage, and firm determination.

So we journey onward with faith,
thankful for the unsung heroes
who give of themselves for the
greater good of all mankind. We
stand on the precipice. Let's rise!

©CVarsalona, 2020


Carol says:
My National Poetry Month project, #NatureNurtures2020, started on April 1st at my blog, Beyond LiteracyLink. My initial blog post sent an invitation out to the world to discover nature's beauty and bounty during #QuarantineLife. As a distractor to troubling times, I created a variety of #poemsofhope, a Nature Nurture! padlet, a #NatureNurtures2020 hashtag that includes an eclectic mix of artistic expressions, and mini-galleries to circulate around the globe. At the end of the month, I will hope to design the Nature Nurtures 2020 Global Gallery of Artistic Expressions.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

2020 Progressive Poem Line #19

To be a poet is a condition, not a profession.
~Robert Graves

My turn to add a line to the progressive poem! Thank you to Margaret for her current shepherdship and to Irene for founding the project and propelling it along.

I love the "write two lines and the next poet picks the one they'll use" twist this year. How fun is that? That way I can suggest something nutty for one line and still give Rose something reasonable for her second option. (I kid! Don't worry, I'm not going to give her "oooo.")

I have a wild imagination, as evidenced by the fact that earlier this week, I mistook someone getting a shampoo for getting their hair cut with a laser. So usually I have to reel it in, but with the progressive poem, after I read that we happened upon a deer and her debuting fawns, my options (as I saw them) were to a) back away or b) back away. What can I say? I'm afraid I took it a little too seriously and didn't want to alarm her.

Here's what we've got 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 gasp! Shudder! Breathe out. Relax...
as a whitetail doe comes into view.
She shifts and spotted fawns debut.

We freeze. My green eyes and her brown
meet and lock. Time slows down.


So here we are! Rose, your choices are:

I scatter the cakes, backing away


"Namaste," I bow as I turn away


2020 Progressive Poem

1 Donna Smith at Mainely Write
2 Irene Latham at Live Your Poem
3 Jone MacCulloch at deowriter
4 Liz Steinglass
5 Buffy Silverman
6 Kay McGriff 
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 at Radio, Rhythm, and Rhyme
11 Janet Fagel, hosted at 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 Mordhorst at My Juicy Little Universe
18 Mary Lee Hahn at A Year of Reading
19 Tabatha at Opposite of Indifference
20 Rose Cappelli at Imagine the Possibilities
21 Janice Scully at Salt City Verse
22 Julieanne Harmatz at To Read, To Write, To Be
23 Ruth at There is no such thing as a God-forsaken town
24 Christie Wyman at Wondering and Wandering
25 Amy at The Poem Farm
26 Dani Burtsfield at Doing the Work That Matters
27 Robyn Hood Black at Life on the Deckle Edge
28 Jessica Bigi at TBD
29 Fran Haley at lit bits and pieces
30 Michelle Kogan

Thursday, April 16, 2020

Mini Escape

Slow breathing is like an anchor in the midst of an emotional storm: the anchor won't make the storm go away, but it will hold you steady until it passes.
~Russ Harris

Today's TIWYK poem is from Michelle Kogan. She would like the reader to know about comforts that work for her and might be helpful for them:


Moments of anxiety
Visit many in our society,

Not just one’s diagnosed
But one’s who feel they’ve seen a ghost…

So if you’d like to squelch that fear
And send it packing and not so near,

Here are a couple things I’ve tried
That often lifts my spirit and stride.

I’ll pick a spot I’ve loved to be,
Eyes closed, focus, I’m there by three.

Sit quite still, thinking only of my spot
Slowly my knots begin to unknot…

Warmth spreads through my entire being
Like rays of sun lifting and freeing.

But if my mini escape escapes you,
Try squiggling some lines to see you through.

Follow that line, curve, or mark
Wherever it goes it may erase away dark.

If you’re still feeling low, and not sure which way to go–
Send me a flag, text, or call, and let me know.

And now my friend, breathe in and out,
And remember, I’m here for you always, without a doubt.

© 2020 Michelle Kogan


Michelle chose an article about how nature makes you feel better to go with her poem. She also liked this video:

Here are two other bird video Michelle recommends.


Nix the comfort zone has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Molly!


You know what's the rage this year? ...Hats.
~Bill Watterson

Since so many people are thinking about giving each other haircuts, that's our topic for this Art Thursday! (Not sure what is happening to the guy in the back of the last picture. ?)

One of a Lady's duties - hair cutting en famille

A hair-dresser accidentally severing a woman's locks with his curling tongs

The Young Hairdresser
Felix Schlesinger (1833–1910)

A book of cheerful cats and other animated animals, 1903
Joseph Greene Francis

A barber cutting a frowning man's hair

A barber shaving the front and sides of a man's head, in the Manchu style
Watercolour by Zhou Pei Qun, ca. 1800

A barber cutting a man's hair

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Sakura time

Suddenly she was seeing the buds on the cherry trees around her; she could feel the energy packed within them, a bouquet of fireworks whose fuse had already been lit. She could smell them, too, a subtle essence of pink and lollipops, the sweetness deepened by the scent of the slowly warming earth below them.
~Erica Bauermeister

I made a tea cup birdfeeder that looked cool but didn't last through the weather and squirrels. The cup isn't broken so I could remake it stronger, but it would involve me sitting for a long time holding it together while the glue hardens, so naw.

I had much better luck with cherry blossom lemonade (I made the syrup from a general flower syrup recipe, but this one is the same: Bartender's Guide to Foraging Cherry Blossoms).

The syrup smelled faintly of cherries and made a delicious lemonade. We liked it so much, I made it again. The second time, it turned out bright pink. I am not sure why. A photo from the first batch:

Here's a link to information about edible flowers. A surprising number are edible! (Make sure they haven't been sprayed with pesticide!)

Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Not for Kids

Anything that’s human is mentionable, and anything that is mentionable can be more manageable.
~Fred Rogers

I'd like to thank Heidi Mordhorst for sharing her Things I Wish You Knew poem with us today.

Not for Kids

This poem is not for kids
it’s about how the bees sting you
from the inside
it’s about what’s under the bed
invisible almighty
that they are afraid of

this poem is all shiny
on the outside and rotten
on the inside
oops worm bit off your head
now you can’t think your way
out of the apple

it’s not for kids at all
kids don’t know about pain:
scraped knee, loose tooth,
broken arm, black eye
these are sticks and stones
mere sticks and stones

kids don’t know that words
can always hurt you
isn’t it amazing how the
high-functioning trunk
grows right around
the wire that garottes it

this poem is not for kids
it’s this little light of mine
frantic incandescent
long-lasting flavor of
gingerbread abandonment
the way you can’t get angry
because nothing is wrong

Heidi Mordhorst


Heidi hadn't picked a resource link to share but she had picked a topic: Somatic Experiencing. Psychology Today has an explanation of SE.

Addendum: Heidi said in the comments that "It's helpful, in terms of "things I wish you knew," to distinguish between Trauma with a capital T and trauma with a small t, which is what this poem is about.

I like the focus of this article for that reason, and because it emphasizes the many bodily pathways to processing old, "ingrown" stress responses.

Maybe in the current contagion this understanding about small persistent traumas is especially important."

Sunday, April 12, 2020

What I Know

Every unwanted movement in my hand or arm, every twitch that I cannot anticipate or arrest, is a reminder that even in the domain of my own being, I am not calling the shots.
~Michael J. Fox

Thank you to Linda Baie for sharing this TIWYK poem about her beloved late husband Arvie.

What I Know

We knew it would come,
the loss of how to make toast,
how to make his famous fried egg sandwiches,
how to tie his shoes.
If you want to know what I know,
dementia’s different for everyone.
Some get angry, but my husband did not.
He stayed his brave, sweet self,
allowed help when he needed it,
kept going when he knew
each day he might lose something else.
What do you do? Learn what might help.
Enjoy being together,
playing games,
doing puzzles,
taking a final trip with the grandson,
who helps navigate when Grandpa cannot.

Keep hugging,
when you can’t play anymore.
Find the best doctors,
join a support group,
make sure family comes often.
Patience for the everyday,
for him and for yourself.
Then more patience
to share with him
when he’s lost his.
That’s what I know.

Linda Baie ©


- The organization that helped Linda and Arvie the most was The Parkinson Association of the Rockies.

- The Alzheimer's Association has information about Parkinson's Dementia. They also have various information for caregivers.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

Hard to Catch

The real fear that I have for dyslexic people is not that they have to struggle with jumbled input or that they can’t spell, but that they will quit on themselves before they get out of school.
~Stephen J. Cannell

I'd like to thank Liz Steinglass for sharing her "Things I Wish You Knew" poem with us today.

What I wish you knew about me
by Elizabeth Steinglass

Words are not
a way to pour
a fact or story
into my head.
Words to me
are birds,
feathered, taloned,
hard to catch,
and when I do,
they flap and fight
and won’t lie flat
in alphabetized folders
I can find
when I come back.
For me pages full of
words represent
the exhausting chore
of snaring a flock
of swallows.


To learn more about dyslexia, visit the Yale Center for Dyslexia and Creativity.


Would you like to send a poem to a poetry friend and receive one in return? Join the Summer Poem Swap! You can do 1-5 swaps. Usually we mail them, which is still an option this year, but I wanted to include emailing them as an option due to our current circumstances. You email me your name and address by April 24, and by May 1, I will send you information about the people who you will be sending poems.

Swap 1: ends June 8 (send a poem by then)
Swap 2: ends June 22
Swap 3: ends July 6
Swap 4: ends July 20
Swap 5: ends August 3

If you will be busy during one time period, you can not do that swap OR you can do that swap early. You have to send a poem by that date, but there's nothing that says you can't write the poem whenever you want! To join, email me at tabatha(at)tabathayeatts(dot)com. (I've received some folks' registrations already. Thanks, y'all!)


The Poem Farm has the Poetry Friday round-up. Thanks, Amy!

Gisella Giovenco

That which at twilight had appeared to be a silvery sea-god's palace, a structure of twisted sea-shapes, was now a temple built by the cunning genies of Fire.
~Gabriele D'Annunzio

I know I posted art of Venice recently, but I'm doing it again...these silk inlay mosaics are just so lovely:

Palazzo Michiel dalle Colonne
by Gisella Giovenco

Palazzo Giusti e Ca' d'Oro
by Gisella Giovenco

Vista di Portofino
by Gisella Giovenco

by Gisella Giovenco