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Life on the Deckle Edge

Poetry Friday - Invest in the Ripples at TeacherDance!

Just a wave from here this week - been driving all over the county and waiting at various veterinary appointments, waiting at the tax office, waiting at the DMV - and trying to meet deadlines in between!  Please visit our beautiful and ever-thoughtful Linda at TeacherDance for the Roundup, and for a soul-nourishing post as well. Happy March!

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Poetry Friday - Haiku in bottle rockets - and Happy 25 Years to the Journal!


Greetings, Poetry Lovers!


Short and sweet today with a big shout-out to Stanford Forrester and bottle rockets! Congrats on 25 years (50 issues) of this wonderful journal.  Here's to the next 25....


Always honored to have a poem included, and here's one I have in this issue:


just a number

rainwater seeps into

my boots


The amazing Tabatha has the Roundup today at The Opposite of Indifference.  Thank you, Tabatha! 

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Poetry Friday - More New Year Poetry Post Cards


Greetings, Poetry Lovers! Hope you've felt loved this Valentine's Day week. 


I'm happy to share the rest of the postcards I've received as part of the New Year Poetry Postcard Swap, organized by Jone Rush MacCulloch. Participants send these wonderful greetings any time after January 1 through the Chinese/Lunar New Year (February 10 this year).  Poems and images may or may not include the animal for the year, which is currently the Wood Dragon. (My post last week featured my own postcard, and on January 25, I featured the first three I received.)  


Enlarge the picture to get a sense of the images in these delightful dozen, and here are excerpted poems from them:


Peace Four Ways 2024

by Linda Mitchell


How to write a peace poem

when our world knows only war?

Millions wander with no home

How to write a peace poem?

as bomb-dropping drones 

pollute our skies and more?

How to write a peace poem?

when our world knows only war?



quiet covers

this warring world

we fight



this peace at twilight

this refuge from day's worries

a breath for this world


In 2024, let

us remake the world for peace

Let us take a moment to begin

again the notion that with

a new year there's no war for you or me




from Denise Krebs:



creative artist

visionary life-giver

like the wood dragon



-another elfchen for Robyn

(Aww... thank you, Denise!)



From Margaret Simon:










From Gail Aldous:


sun holds blue sky's hands

they persuade gray clouds away

sparkling peace and light



From Molly Hogan:


When you lose sight

of the beauty around you

may a new day

restore glory

to the tattered and ordinary

and light the way



From Michelle Kogan:



we can do more

let's begin





Get Ready...



Cooper's Hawk

as you navigate

unknown, unbalanced paths of



From Carol Varsalona:


Year of the Wood Dragon



of fire

warms winter's chills

offering energy and opportunities - 






freeflutter on

windchilled days like

glittery fairies dancing together



From Jone Rush MacCulloch:


first morning, walking on the beach, what

treasures does the ebbing tide have?

Reading sea-foam like tea leaves, I

wonder what my ancestors risked?


From Tabatha Yeatts (& dragon on her card was created by Elena):


As the new year delivers the unknown to hand,

Fortify yourself as well as you can:


Repair your armor, pack a shield,

Stow words and memories that heal,


Keep compassion on tap and pour a deep flagon - 

We're at the edge of the map, and here be dragons.




From Linda Baie:


new year's gift - 

forget the hurry

waste time every day

listen to the rain

and to the cat's purr



Postcard images and poems are copyright each poet. Thank you, poets, for sharing!


For even more wonderful poetry, row your way over to Reflections on the Teche, where our lovely and talented Margaret (included above!) is rounding up Poetry Friday this week. 

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Poetry Friday - Happy Lunar New Year, Dragon Fans!


Greetings, Poetry Lovers!  Continuing a recent theme, I've received more wonderful, creative New Year postcards as part of Jone Rush MacCulloch's Poem Postcard Exchange, and I look forward to featuring them next week. (Or the next couple of weeks, depending on how many I can fit in a picture!) These surprises in the mailbox really brighten a day, especially in winter.


Today I thought I'd share mine that I sent out this week to everyone.  I hope these cards make it by Saturday, the beginning of the Chinese/Lunar New Year! 


Jone always adds a nod to the Lunar New Year (and its animal) as a an option for creative inspiration. The postcard exchange itself is inspired, she says, by the Japanese custom of Nengajo - sending out greetings for the New Year. 


Jone shared that her own birth year's animal is the water dragon, so she's related to Nessie.  ;0) (Slaintѐ to that, Jone!!)  The animal for 2024 is the wood dragon. 


Online you'll find all kinds of info, customs, and folklore surrounding these dragons as well as the other animals.  The New Year is a huge holiday in many Asian countries, with countless people travelling to their home towns to celebrate, and many businesses closing for a week.


As for me, I've always loved dragons. (My first published/now out-of-print book, a Scholastic Rookie Reader called Sir Mike, featured an imaginary one!)


For my postcards, I reached back into my own misty imagination to find dragons.  Did anybody else "sculpt" treasures from a simple dough in the kitchen, and bake them into being? My mother was very supportive of the creative messes my brother Mike and I could make.  Thank you, Mom.

Oh - and Happy 44th Anniversary today to my mother, Nita,  and her Valentine, Jack!



Here Be


Flour, salt, water
Our mother showed us
how to form dough
 into whatever we wanted
bake it, wait for it to cool.


I made dragons
with pointy wings
and arrowhead tips on their tails.
Their edges browned.
I painted them purple

and royal blue.


If I close my eyes,

I can see them




feel the warmth
of their fiery


©2024 Robyn Hood Black


Fun note: In more of my own internet explorations about Lunar New Year dragons, many days after I wrote this poem, I discovered that their lucky colors are purple and blue.  How about that?!!


The background for my poem card came from some canvas-textured papers I dyed with indigo powder during a recent online mixed media workshop I took. I scanned a small sheet into my computer and enlarged it a wee bit to make it 5 X 7 size.  For the dragon, I carved a little block of "Easy Carve" (like linoleum, but much softer and easier on the hands).  I had drawn a quick sketch - just from imagination, as I was trying to recall freely drawing dragons as a kid - and made a simple outline of it on the block, then loosely carved away. 


I printed the image individually on each card.  Some came out with fairly crisp, even impressions - the usual goal for printmaking, and others were a bit messier.  But, my favorites ended up with gradated amounts of ink over the image, kind of ghostly, like the one above. I thought these blended in with the billowy nature of the indigo wash, adding a hint of mystery, maybe.


Final note:  If you search online for "Here Be Dragons," which maybe a few of us (?) thought was a common warning found on very old maps, you might discover as I did that a Latin variation appeared on a globe at the beginning of the 16th Century... and that's about it.  But I do love me some illustrated sea monsters and such on antique maps! 


Thanks for reading my rambles.  Now, get out your compass and ramble on over to Beyond Literacy Link, where the ever-generous and creative Carol has our Roundup. 

Happy Valentine's Day to all you LOVE-ly people!

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Poetry Friday - Go See Mary Lee!

Howdy - I'm a bit covered up this week, but please make your way to A(nother) Year of Reading, where Mary Lee has our Poetry Friday Roundup and - shhhh...!- secrets!!

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