Greetings, Poetry Lovers! I'm honored to be hosting Poetry Friday this week. Please leave your links & descriptions in the comments below, and I'll round them up old-school-style throughout the day.
Happy Mother's Day weekend! Let's acknowledge right out of the gate that this is a tough time for many. If you are missing your mother, or you have lost a child, or you've had a less-than-ideal relationship as a mother or a child, or if you are longing to be a mother and it hasn't worked out, you are wished comfort and peace this weekend.
I'm feeling beyond grateful that our daughter, Morgan, is experiencing her first Mother's Day this year. (She only missed it by a couple-few weeks last year, as our wee Sawyer is 11 months old.) This precious boy was wanted for a long time, after a few hard years of empty arms and fertility treatments. Hats off to any woman willing to go through all those long needles for months and months and months or more.
I'm also beyond grateful that my spunky 84-year-old mother, Nita, a cancer survivor among other challenges, is doing well and has been able to love on Sawyer herself - most recently in the snapshot above from April. (The black and white photos were taken last fall.) While Jeff & I are closer to our kiddos after our recent move, I'm afraid Florida, where my folks live, is down a longer stretch of road now. But kudos to Mom who, despite vision problems, has learned how to text and enjoy (almost daily) pictures and videos of baby antics.
Here's my poem for today, a haiku written not long after Sawyer was born:
new mother's whisper
of spider silk
Frogpond, Vol. 45, No. 3 Autumn 2022
©Robyn Hood Black
In other poetry news, I'm enjoying The Father Goose Treasury of Poetry by Charles Ghigna and illustrated by Sara Brezzi (Schiffer Kids, just out). Gorgeous! And that's a feat worth celebrating, having a body of work large enough to comb through to make a treasury, am I right? This is a great volume to share among generations. In case you missed it, our lovely Jama posted a fulsome interview with Charles and peeks inside the book over at Jama's Alphabet Soup here.
May is a super-busy month, I know. Happy Teacher Appreciation Week to all you educators! Also, take care of yourself and appreciate National Mental Health Month, and thanks to folks like my hubby who devote their professional lives to improving mental health for others.
So, what's going on in your realm this week? (Yes, I did wake up at 5 a.m. to watch the coronation last Saturday!) I can't wait to read what you've got to share.
(Unrelated PS - For those who follow artsyletters, I posted some in-progress new studio pics over at artsyletters.com here. I'll do a 'tour' when I get a little more together!)
* * * * * * * * THE ROUNDUP * * * * * * * *
Janice Scully starts us off with a haiku and an appreciation for the timing of blooming things - her lilacs are in full purple glory here at Salt City Verse. Happy Spring!
Over at Chicken Spaghetti, Susan has a beautiful cento created from the poetry of Gabriela Mistral, presented in Spanish and English with her original translations.
At Small Reads for Brighter Days, Laura has a day-brightening and sigh-worthy poetryaction (say that out loud & learn more at her site!) to the picture book Milo Imagines the World.
Linda has two bright and springy original haiku and a padlet link to her charming triolet (all writers will relate!) at A Word Edgewise today. One of these days, Linda and I are going to collage together in person....
You will leave anything BUT blue if you wing it on over to Jama's Alphabet Soup for a serving of Sidney Wade's poem, "Blue." (I am loving all these poetic encounters with birds this morning. Though I had my alarm set a little early because I was hosting PF, it was really a Carolina Wren on the fence outside my bedroom window which got me up today....)
No one can accuse our Tabatha of not branching out into many magical (and sometimes wild) directions. At The Opposite of Indifference , she's celebrating originality with lyrics from "Crooked Tree" with a video of Molly Tuttle and Golden Highway. (She also has a snippet from the brand new Poetry Out Loud winner as a bonus!)
Our multi-talented Michelle Kogan chimes in with a gorgeous original oil painting detail and some more poetic bird-love (an original 4X4 poem) celebrating Mother's Day.
Three cheers for Catherine at Reading to the Core for forging ahead toward the finish line of her April/Poetry Month project with poems of hope featuring the letters "v" and "w"! That's my kind of timeline, btw... I particularly love her golden shovel today, inspired by lines from GMH I have hanging up in my house.
At Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme, Matt stumbled upon some buried treasure in his files - an original five-year-old poem that packs some Springtime punch in just four lines and 12 words! Bravo.
Rose has a tribute to dogs over at Imagine the Possibilities, with some lines from the incomparable Mary Oliver and a thoughtful original poem. (Warning - have a tissue handy; I am still grieving the sudden loss of our wee Rita and did not make it through the post dry-eyed. Thank you for putting so much of what we love about dogs in these words, Rose.)
Keep the tissue handy. Linda at Teacher Dance has collected and shared responses of kindnesses noted by many of you recently at her blog (and new folks are always welcome to the Poetry Friday table - and folks who have had to be dipping in and out, like yours truly this Spring!). Kindness itself is poetry, isn't it? Go fill your cup!
Why do you write? Dave tackles this question by responding with an original poem over at Leap of Dave and shares a bit about a local poetry workshop he participates in.
Give a nod to Edward Lear and then head over to see Sally for a quick celebration of Limerick Day! Sally's post might be concise, but she's been long on sharing poetry goodness with young writers and readers this week.
Cue the CONFETTI - lots of it! Marcie Flinchum Atkins has not one, but TWO amazing-sounding book publication announcements this week! One is for a nonfiction nature picture book, and the other is for a historical verse novel about an activist in the women's suffrage movement. Way to go, Marcie! She also shares a Spring haiku and some lovely pictures of blooms... I'd like to gather up all of this week's PF flower pictures in a garden, and all of this week's PF birds to flitter around them.
Speaking of birds, you know Amy is always finding amazing things at The Poem Farm, and she carries that spirit of noticing when she travels, too, as she did while traveling to visit a school this week. "We can each be a beauty detective," she says. Enjoy her fetching feathered foto and original poem - dare you not to smile.
At Bookseed Studio, enjoy Jan's latest post wrapping up Poetry Month. I'm always inspired by the wonder that is Jan.
Over at My Juicy Little Universe, you'll encounter Heidi exploring what it is like to be a bat, with a nod to one of my fave recent books about the animal realm, Ed Yong's An Immense World. You'll also encounter the word 'azimuth' in her original poem, which I had to look up. ;0) Don't ask me to tell you what it means, though, K?
Margaret has a touching tribute to mothers and mothering at Reflections on the Teche. She is also honoring generations of mothers in her family. (There's also a bluebonnet-beautiful photo of Baby June and an original poem by Margaret celebrating her name.)
At Live Your Poem, Irene delights us with a free-wheeling and lovely Gees Bend-inspired quilt, and with two versions of a "yellow parasol" haiku as part of her ARTSPEAK adventures. And, dear reader, she's asked you to weigh in on which one is more effective!
Mary Lee at A(Nother) Year of Reading has pure joy for a post today. Well, I mean, she has a new book by Kwame Alexander and Deanna Nikaido with illustrations by Melissa Sweet: How to Write a Poem. Released in April, it looks/sounds amazing and I might have just ordered it. My favorite parts of Mary Lee's post, however, are the poetic comments from young readers and writers. (Mary Lee couldn't quite stay away from teaching reading after retiring from the classroom and is involved in after-school programs, still inspiring lucky kids.)
It's time to dance. No matter your current life situation, whether bathed in grief or joy, join Patricia at Reading, Writing, Wondering for meaningful movement, as well as a snowy poetic evening contemplation with a dog.
And we're back to pure joy with Karen Edmisten's post sharing Ross Gay's poem, "Throwing Children," about the ubiquitious delight children crave by being tossed into the air (and safely caught) by a loving grown-up.
At The Apples in my Orchard, Carol shares a very personal bit of her family's experience navigating her mother's dementia, and the extra miles they go because of the miles between them. Thank you for your beautiful poem and honest post, Carol. Many will understand and identify with these bittersweet moments.
Oh, Friends - you'd never believe from the calm and peaceful post and pretty, blooming images Carol has at Beyond Literacy Link that they've had quite the week so far in the Mother-Daughter-new-baby-to-be department, according to her comment below. Happy Mother's Day to all, and love from all of us Poetry Friday peeps to greet the new little one soon! I'm impressed that in the midst of all the excitement, Carol made time to sit and be and compose haiku and a lovely post.