Saturday, June 24, 2023

Poetry Friday: I Remember: Poems and Pictures of Heritage

I've been holding this book in reserve so I could share it for Poetry Friday. There's much to love in this compilation by Lee Bennett Hopkins. I'm not sure how I missed it when it first came out.

One of the things I love most is the invitation to poetry that precedes each poem. The School Library Journal explains it this way: "Each poet's work is preceded by a statement addressing what poetry means to them and how its format can tap into a person's heart and soul."

And then the poems! Fifteen diverse poets reflect on the unique heritages, traditions, and beliefs that shaped their lives. Each poem is accompanied by a stunning illustration with a note from each illustrator that explains their artistic approach. After you read the book, there's a delightful "About the Poets and Artists" section. Photographs of each contributor as a child and an adult accompany the brief bios. 

Check it out from your local library like I did. But once you've feasted on these pages, you'll definitely want a copy for your own bookshelf. I just ordered mine!

Linda Mitchell at A Word Edgewise is hosting our poetry playground this week.

Saturday, June 17, 2023

Poetry Friday: Zap! Clap! Boom!: The Story of a Thunderstorm

There are more poetry books arriving on my holds shelf than I can get around to sharing. And isn't that a wonderful challenge? 

This week I will simply let a picture tell the tale. This is my six-year old grandson who absolutely loves Laurie Purdie Salas's rhyming tale of a thunderstorm.

He's the kind of guy who lets me read the back matter to him and knows more than I do about dinosaurs, our world, and the solar system. 

But our fascination doesn't stop with him. Yesterday the book was requested by his brothers, almost two and four years of age. They love chanting Zap! Clap! Boom! when we get to those words. As for me, I'm looking forward to sharing thunderstorms with them after we move to North Carolina. I'm sure summer will provide at least a few opportunities to chant those words Zap! Clap! Boom! and remember all the things we learned in this story about a thunderstorm. Thanks, Laura, for another family favorite!

Michelle is hosting our Poetry Friday fun this week.

Friday, June 9, 2023

Poetry Friday: Where I Live

What a delight to pick up the book, Where I Live: Poems About My Home, My Street, and My Town, from my library holds shelf recently.

"This posthumous compilation selected by distinguished anthologist Janeczko beautifully captures the essence of home; Yum’s art enhances this, centering each poem firmly into diverse communities. . . . People and places are diverse in artistic expression, allowing readers to recognize themselves in different poems . . . an outstanding poetry compilation about the meaning of home."
—School Library Journal (starred review)

There are many wonderful poems by beloved poets featured on the charmingly illustrated pages. I can't resist naming the poets in this anthology that I've met in person or heard speak at conferences: Janet Wong, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Naomi Shihab Nye, Irene Latham, Paul B. Janeczko, and Charles Waters. While I was perusing the book, I decided to write a cento* from lines borrowed from these poets. 

*From the Latin word for “patchwork,” the cento (or collage poem) is a poetic form composed entirely of lines from poems by other poets.

On summer Mondays                                     (Irene Latham)         

in yellow boots                                               (Paul B. Janeczko)

ready to zoom,                                                 (Janet Wong)

each footprint a temporary tattoo.                   (Charles Waters)  

There is a place to stand,                                 (Naomi Shihab Nye)                

the place where I feel free.                              (Amy Ludwig VanDerwater)

 - Ramona Behnke      


I love the image of those yellow boots leaving temporary tattoos on the wet pavement. I look forward to finding a new place to stand and a place to feel free in our new home. Moving cross country at this stage of life is not for the weak of heart.

Be sure to check out this latest anthology, Where I Live. I included two of my favorite anthologies by Paul B. Janeczko from my own bookshelves in the picture. I can't wait to introduce fireflies to the grands when we move to North Carolina in July!    

    Buffy Silverman is hosting Poetry Friday this week.

Friday, June 2, 2023

Spiritual Journey Thursday and Poetry Friday: Radiance Among the Flowers

One of our favorite playgrounds/parks in our area is Rhododendron Park, about a half mile from our current home. However, we moved here in the middle of summer last year, so I failed to see it in springtime splendor, Things have been a bit busy with the upcoming move (daughter and family moved into our place so they could get their house on the market). I was afraid that I might have missed prime blossom time. I stopped by last Friday and spent a wonderful hour wandering through the park and snapping pics,

I love these lines from Joy Harjo's poem "Remember."

"Remember the plants, trees, animal life who all have their
tribes, their families, their histories, too. Talk to them,
listen to them. They are alive poems."

I am grateful to have walked among alive poems this past week. Join me for this radiant ramble through Rhododendron Park.



And because I revel in the baker's dozen, here's the 13th picture of springtime splendor, taken in our front yard yesterday.


These lines from Wendell Barry's poem "The Peace of Wild Things" sum up my love affair with nature: 

"And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light.

For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free."


Our Spriritual Journey host for this week is Dave at Leap of Dave who shares ruminations on the church. Check out Dave's thoughts on how "the church and the post office are really about one thing, the same thing, and that thing is delivery." 

I took Dave's invitation to heart "to write about anything you like." Anytime I write about nature, I remember my dear friend, Jan Orme. She was my walking buddy for years. Her interest was always trees, mine lay in blossoms. She indulged my frequent stops to snap pics and revel in wonder at the splendor of the natural world. This post with its pics and poems is dedicated to my dear friend Jan. Any time I walk, I remember her.

Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect is hosting Poetry Friday this week.