Tomorrow starts a month long celebration of poetry for National Poetry Month. There are going to be all sorts of wonderful poetic activities going on around the Kidlitosphere all month long. I’ll keep a master list here and if you find others or decide to start one yourself, leave a note in the comments and I’ll add you to the list.
Last year I was inspired by my new native plant garden and I wrote a haiku a day for 30 days all about California Native plants. This year I was struggling with how and where to focus my April poetry project. I thought about focusing on just one poetic form again but decided I wanted the chance to play around with different forms if the mood suited me. I know myself well enough to know that with poetry, constraints help me focus and stretch. That left me scrambling for a suitable topic. I poked around inside myself until I came up against something that hurt, a topic that was deep and emotional and would force me to peel back the layers of myself, which is where some of the best poetry comes from. A few months ago I posted about finding my father’s obituary before ever getting the chance to meet him. I’ve made contact with one cousin since then and the process of knowing, for sure, that he is dead and now talking a little bit with a new member of my family, well it’s stirred up all sorts of things.
So for National Poetry Month I’ve decided to explore my thoughts about my father. I’m not promising perfect poems but I am promising emotional honesty.
Here’s a look at what else is happening around the Kidlitosphere.
KIDLITOSPHERE CELEBRATION OF NATIONAL POETRY MONTH
- Gregory K. will once again host 30 Poets/30 Days with previously unpublished poems by favorite children’s authors.
- Tricia Stohr-Hunt will interview 30 children’s poets. The Poetry Makers list is stellar!
- Lee Wind shares GLBTQ Teen Poetry.
- Jone MacCulloch shares Thirty Days, Thirty Students, Thirty Poems. Original poems by students. Jone will also again offer the Poetry Postcard Project where original student poems are sent out on decorated postcards. Request yours now.
- Check out Mary Lee Hahn’s daily poems about teaching each day in April. Also at A Year of Reading, Franki will review poetry books & share Poetry Month activities.
- Jama Rattigan is posting original poems & favorite recipes by some of the Poetry Friday regulars.
- Irene Latham will give away a favorite poetry anthology each poetry Friday during April.
- Laura Salas will post a children’s poem per day from a poetry book she loves.
- Sylvia Vardell will be inviting poets to play Poetry Tag by offering a poem for readers to enjoy, then “tag” a fellow poet who then shares her/his own poem that is connected to the previous poem.ORIGINAL POEM-A-DAY CHALLENGE
Check these blogs daily for new original poems by the following people:
- Susan Taylor Brown
- Mary Lee Hahn
- Andromeda Jazmon
- Irene Latham
- Jone MacCulloch
- Elizabeth Moore
- April Halprin Wayland
Have you heard of a Pi-ku? Pi is 3.14, so it is 3 syllables in the first line, one in the second, and four in the third. I read about it on LJ.
Walk the woods
one dog, three cats.
My pi-ku about me and my companions when I walk every day.
I thought of this because you said you did haiku.
Oh Pi-ku sounds like fun. I hadn’t heard of it before. Thanks for sharing!
Your poetry month project sounds like it’s going to be quite something both for you AND us readers. Looking forward to it!
Thanks, Greg. It will be a challenge.
Family and history
I just went and read about when you found your father’s obituary. I just passed the two-year mark of losing my father, and my history with him was the opposite of yours with your father, so I can’t relate at all to your experience.
I live fairly close to you in WG/SJ, and I wanted to offer you something. Free, no strings. If you decide you want to trace your father’s family, I may be able to help. I’ve been researching my own family history for about twenty years now. It’s all British, but I have a subscription to the American stuff on ancestry.com now, so I may be able to find what you might decide you wish to seek some day.
Nearly seven years ago, when I was in Britain during my pregnancy with my son, I made a special trip to Glasgow for two reasons: I wanted to visit my husband’s mother, who was getting very old — in case she might never get to see our child — and I wanted to find my grandparents’ grave. I never knew my mother’s parents, as they both died before she ever came to America and met my father. Her father died when my mother was just 3. Her mother died when Mom was 17. They were long gone before I came along, and I never really knew much about them until I began to do my genealogy.
When I finally located that spot in the cemetery, no longer graced by the small headstone my mother remembers seeing there, I wept. I have no idea why.
Re: Family and history
This is an amazingly generous offer and I thank you so very much.
I am no surprised that you wept. Not at all.