Is it too late? #NationalPoetryMonth #NaPoWriMo

Happy National Poetry Month! This month I am tagging along with poet/author Amy Ludwig VanDerwater during what has become her annual NPM Project. You can click here to learn more about this straight from Amy! This year she is writing and sharing a new poem every day, each highlighting a different poetic technique, but keeping the same subject. Her challenge, 1 Subject 30 Ways, is also a bit of an informal book study and master class, as she’s using her fall 2017 release Poems Are Teachers (Heinemann) as her guide. Join us!

Today’s poetic technique chosen by Amy is to leave a question in the air. My subject is, and will be all month-long, vernal pools. My love for this unique habitat is often overshadowed by the nagging feeling that it could possibly be too late to protect it in the long term. I took a list of descriptors from my writer’s notebook and ended with a twist — the question of if it’s too late.

Is it too late_I hope you’ve been following along the journey of the 2018 KidLitosphere Progressive Poem, a fun annual collaborative project lovingly begun in 2012 by poet/author Irene Latham. This poem has magically, and quite literally this year, been growing right before our eyes daily during the month of April. This year we are following along the journey of Jasmine, a seed, and her companions Moon and Owl. Jasmine, from a long line of poet’s jasmine, began is beginning to make her way in the world and find her poetic voice. The process has been fascinating to follow and I was excited to dive in for the first time with line eighteen. I hope you will follow Jasmine’s journey for the remainder of our Progressive Poem month by clicking on the blogs in the list below.  I can’t wait to see how it ends.

April

2 Jane at Raincity Librarian
4 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty
Jan at bookseedstudio
6 Irene at Live Your Poem
7 Linda at TeacherDance
Janet F. at Live Your Poem
11 Brenda at Friendly Fairy Tales
12 Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink
13 Linda at A Word Edgewise
15 Donna at Mainely Write
16 Sarah at Sarah Grace Tuttle
18 Christie at Wondering and Wandering
19 Michelle at Michelle Kogan
20 Linda at Write Time
23 Amy at The Poem Farm
24 Mary Lee at A Year of Reading
26 Renee at No Water River
27 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog
28 Kat at Kat’s Whiskers
29 April at Teaching Authors
30 Doraine at Dori Reads

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This post is part of my personal National Poetry Month celebration. I hope you’ll join me in sharing your favorite poetic gems throughout the month of April whether they are written by you, your students, or another poet.

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Startled by Nature #NationalPoetryMonth #NaPoWriMo #PoetryFriday

Greetings from NY’s Hudson Valley, where I’m on a mini road trip. It’s a drippy, dreary day, but I’m wishing you a happy Poetry Friday and tail end of National Poetry Month! Many thanks to Irene Latham for hosting our weekly get together today over at Live Your Poem. If you haven’t seen the amazing poems she’s been crafting daily this month (yes, daily!), related to Harlem Renaissance artists, you’ve been missing out on a treat! 

This month I am tagging along with poet/author Amy Ludwig VanDerwater during what has become her annual NPM Project. You can click here to learn more about this straight from Amy! This year she is writing and sharing a new poem every day, each highlighting a different poetic technique, but keeping the same subject. Her challenge, 1 Subject 30 Ways, is also a bit of an informal book study and master class, as she’s using her fall 2017 release Poems Are Teachers (Heinemann) as her guide. Join us!

Today’s poetic technique chosen by Amy is to start with a startle. My subject is, and will be all month-long, vernal pools. The most startling fact about wood frogs, and indeed many frogs, is that they go into a state of torpor — a subdued metabolic rate — in the winter. Yes, they appear dead, but when the warm rains of spring arrive, they begin to thaw and come back to life. Is it magic? No. Their body generates an anti-freeze-like substance that keeps them alive in most, but not all, frigid temperatures. Once I established my startle, I knew it had to be a shape poem, too! Can you see the frog?

FrogcicleEctothermic treatNot on any seaside menu Your frozen state fools many Mother Nature's anti-freeze keeps you safefrom Old Man Winter's frigid grasp Buried safe On Forest's floor
Frogsicle
Ectothermic treat
Not on any seaside menu
Your frozen state fools many
Mother Nature’s anti-freeze keeps you safe
From Old Man Winter’s frigid grasp
Buried safe
On Forest’s floor
Snug beneath your leaf litter comforter
You wait
Patiently
Knowing
Spring’s warming rains
Breathe new life into your lungs

I hope you’ve been following along the journey of the 2018 KidLitosphere Progressive Poem, a fun annual collaborative project lovingly begun in 2012 by poet/author Irene Latham. This poem has magically, and quite literally this year, been growing right before our eyes daily during the month of April. This year we are following along the journey of Jasmine, a seed, and her companions Moon and Owl. Jasmine, from a long line of poet’s jasmine, began is beginning to make her way in the world and find her poetic voice. The process has been fascinating to follow and I was excited to dive in for the first time with line eighteen. I hope you will follow Jasmine’s journey for the remainder of our Progressive Poem month by clicking on the blogs in the list below.  I can’t wait to hear what she says!

April

2 Jane at Raincity Librarian
4 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty
Jan at bookseedstudio
6 Irene at Live Your Poem
7 Linda at TeacherDance
Janet F. at Live Your Poem
11 Brenda at Friendly Fairy Tales
12 Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink
13 Linda at A Word Edgewise
15 Donna at Mainely Write
16 Sarah at Sarah Grace Tuttle
18 Christie at Wondering and Wandering
19 Michelle at Michelle Kogan
20 Linda at Write Time
23 Amy at The Poem Farm
24 Mary Lee at A Year of Reading
26 Renee at No Water River
27 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog
28 Kat at Kat’s Whiskers
29 April at Teaching Authors
30 Doraine at Dori Reads

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

This post is part of my personal National Poetry Month celebration. I hope you’ll join me in sharing your favorite poetic gems throughout the month of April whether they are written by you, your students, or another poet.

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Frog Memories #SOL18 #NationalPoetryMonth #NaPoWriMo

Happy National Poetry Month! This month I am tagging along with poet/author Amy Ludwig VanDerwater during what has become her annual NPM Project. You can click here to learn more about this straight from Amy! This year she is writing and sharing a new poem every day, each highlighting a different poetic technique, but keeping the same subject. Her challenge, 1 Subject 30 Ways, is also a bit of an informal book study, as she’s using her fall 2017 release Poems Are Teachers (Heinemann) as her guide. Join us!

Today’s writing technique chosen by Amy is be inspired by a memory. My subject is, and will be all month-long, vernal pools. A memory that returns to me at this time of year is saying goodbye to the wood frogs we head-start in my Kindergarten classroom. Under the watchful eye of a conservation biologist, we head-start these tiny creatures from our campus vernal pool. We first meet them in March or April when they are an egg mass, a raft floating on the surface of the water. Over the next two months or so, we marvel at their metamorphosis, knowing that they must be returned to their home soon. While we are sad, it is comforting to know that the head-starting program gives these gentle creatures, no bigger than a thumbprint, a better chance of survival. Our classroom tanks are a safer environment for them in many respects than their natural habitat. They have much to teach us.

Tiny frog (1)
Tiny frog
Still so small, fragile
The time has come for you to go
Released back into your native habitat
The vernal pool
The place of your birth
Room to grow
An abundance of food
Creatures to learn from, play with
Your brief time with us
Has given you a better chance
To survive and thrive 
Has taught us 
Conservation 
Wetland ecology
Landscape history
With gratitude
Tiny teacher

 

I also hope you will stop by Live Your Poem daily to follow along the journey of the 2018 KidLitosphere Progressive Poem, a fun annual collaborative project lovingly begun in 2012 by poet/author Irene Latham. The poem will magically, and quite literally this year, be growing right before our eyes daily during the month of April. This year we are following along the journey of Jasmine and her companions Moon and Owl. Jasmine, from a long line of poet’s jasmine, began has begun making her way in the world, and has at long last found her poetic voice! The process has been fascinating to follow and I was excited to dive in for the first time with line eighteen. I hope you will follow Jasmine’s journey for the remainder of our Progressive Poem month by clicking on the blogs in the list below. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

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Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us? This post is also part of my personal National Poetry Month celebration. I hope you’ll join me in sharing your favorite poetic gems throughout the month of April whether they are written by you, your students, or another poet.

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm Screen Shot 2018-04-01 at 8.21.35 AM

On that log we sit together #SOL18 #NationalPoetryMonth #NaPoWriMo

Happy National Poetry Month! This month I am tagging along with poet/author Amy Ludwig VanDerwater during what has become her annual NPM Project. You can click here to learn more about this straight from Amy! This year she is writing and sharing a new poem every day, each highlighting a different poetic technique, but keeping the same subject. Her challenge, 1 Subject 30 Ways, is also a bit of an informal book study, as she’s using her fall 2017 release Poems Are Teachers (Heinemann) as her guide. Join us!

Today’s writing technique chosen by Amy is to start with setting. While this is a poetry challenge, starting with setting is certainly a wonderful way to begin many forms of writing. My subject is, and will be all month long, vernal pools. In between two sections of our magical vernal pool is a finger of land — a tiny cape, geographically speaking — with a perfectly placed log. I’m not sure if nature placed this downed limb there, a habitat unto itself, or if the Forest and Trail Association who maintain the trails leading to the pool did, but it’s perfect.

On that log we sit together (no photo)

That log is a favorite spot of mine and my students. When sitting on either side of it, we face water, have water behind us, and water to one side. It’s the perfect place to stop and rest for a while, to become part of the vernal pool habitat if only for a few brief moments.  We sit and listen, watch, wonder, and sometimes sketch in our field notebooks. Do you have a picture in your head of our special place?

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Does it look something like this? If only you could come with us and experience it for yourself.

I also hope you will stop by Live Your Poem daily to follow along the journey of the 2018 KidLit Progressive Poem, a fun annual collaborative project lovingly begun in 2012 by poet/author Irene Latham. The poem will magically, and quite literally this year, be growing right before our eyes daily during the month of April. This year we are following along the journey of Jasmine and her companions Moon and Owl. Jasmine has now safely landed, begun wrapping herself around a trellis, and is beginning to grow. The process is fascinating and this year I am diving in for the first time with a line right in the middle of the month — April 18th.  I’m up tomorrow and nervous as all get out!

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Many thanks to the crew at Two Writing Teachers, and the extended SOL community, for giving us the time, space, and encouragement to live the writerly life here each Tuesday. Won’t you join us? This post is also part of my personal National Poetry Month celebration. I hope you’ll join me in sharing your favorite poetic gems throughout the month of April whether they are written by you, your students, or another poet.

screen-shot-2017-02-20-at-2-05-35-pm Screen Shot 2018-04-01 at 8.21.35 AM