The theme for today is MISSING. That's because lovely Linda Baie sent me a Summer Poem Swap poem by the same title, which I will share shortly.
But first, I want to share a little Insider Information about a poem missing from my new book DEAR WANDERING WILDEBEEST And Other Poems from the Water Hole, coming September 1. Thanks to the amazing Poetry Friday community for your enthusiasm for the book... I am excited to be visiting a number of blogs (with giveaways!) in the coming weeks.
When Millbrook Press acquired the manuscript, there were two elephant poems... the keeper, "Dust Bath at Dusk" appears in the book and illustrator Anna Wadham beautifully used the spread to move the book from the daylight hours to the nighttime ones.
Which leaves the missing elephant poem: "Elephant Digs for Salt."
There were some problems with the poem, not the least of which was the fact that it featured the animal as a worker... and I'd already done that in "Dung Beetle at Work." Also, there was a little problem of the introduction of humans in the poem -- when none of the other poems included humans. AND, some other problems you'll probably spot right away.
So....since we already had an elephant poem anyway, we decided that instead of revising, it was probably best to simply eliminate. Here it is:
Elephant Digs for Salt
Tusks are picks
at this excavation site—
Elephant carves tunnels
to get the nutrients right.
with such expensive tools –
poachers still hunt the ivory,
even though it’s against the rules.
no need for dynamite.
With such power and diligence
it soon satisfies its appetite.
- Irene Latham
And now for Linda's poem! I cannot tell you how this poem made my day. Both the topic, the text, and the presentation. LOVE. Thank you again and again, Linda. Here it is:
All That's Missing
by Linda Baie
Missing: hydrogen molecules two:
without them there wouldn't be
a wishy-washy, splishy-splashy
water world for you and me.
Missing: a hen with no clutch of eggs;
without them, she'd only scratch,
clucking around the chicken pen
to find chicks that didn't hatch.
Missing: the sun that will not set;
all would work, still thinking it's day.
Without our evenings, we'd have no rest
and miss lovely time to play.
Missing: the yeast that chemically boosts;
without it, there would be an outcry
for soft rolls or slices, bagels and buns.
T'would be such a sad goodbye.
Missing: those words that make poetry hum;
without them, our lives would be less.
We'd live with just prose on our pages,
no rhymes for us to possess.
Please go find those molecules two;
I'll bring eggs and yeast that we lack.
Call back the sun and create the words.
sigh, relief, we have our world back!
Thank you, Linda! My favorite is still the hen with the missing eggs. Poor hen! :)
And now for Roundup!! Please leave your link below!