Friday, January 27, 2017


Hello and happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Carol at Beyond Literacy Link for Roundup.

How 'bout those ALA book awards earlier this week?! I was pleased to see a few poetry titles -- and poets! -- recognized, including  FREEDOM IN CONGO SQUARE illustrated by R. Gregory Christie, written by Carole Boston Weatherford (Little Bee Books)


Nikki Grimes & me at Poetry Camp!
and how lovely to see Nikki Grimes recognized with the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award?! Also Naomi Shihab Nye for the May Hill Arbuthnot Lecture Award. Yay yay yay!

I've got a book to share with you, but, first, in case you missed it, here are a couple of poetry posts:

HERE WE GO: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell & Janet Wong -- for Multicultural Children's Book Day (today!) #ReadYourWorld

UNBOUND: a novel in verse by Ann E. Burg

CATCHING A STORYFISH by Janice N. Harrington

Recently my friend and mentor Lee Bennett Hopkins encouraged me to read everything by Myra Cohn Livingston... so I've been working on that! I started at No Water River, where he and Renee La Tulippe have created the wonderful NCTE video series. And then I found a few books in my library.

The first one I want to share is a writing-prompt book, filled with prompts and Myra's students' responses. It's called I AM WRITING A POEM ABOUT...A Game of Poetry. It just shows you that wonderful work can come of challenges/assignments! And makes me wish again I could have attended one of Myra's classes. The good news is, because of this book, in some small way, we can ALL attend one of her classes. Enjoy!

Prompt: one word: rabbit

Poem About Rabbit
by Alice Schertle

I am writing a poem


A pink-eyed poem
     that watches
               from the

of the page,
     that nibbles
                at the

of my  mind.

A quiet poem

The kind
    with long-eared lines that
     to where the words fall.

A poem
coming close
     enough to touch,

to watch
me write a poem


Prompt: three words: ring, drum, blanket

A Ring Needs
by Ann Whitford Paul

A ring needs a finger,
a blanket, a bed.
A window needs curtains,
and butter needs bread.
A king needs a crown
and so does his queen.
A drum needs a drumstick;
A movie, a screen.
A clock needs two hands.
A door needs a knob.
And how would the corn
grow without any cob?
A cupcake needs frosting.
The shore needs a sea.
These words need a reader.
The reader is me.

Oh, Brother!
by Janet S. Wong

The little squirt,
begging for boiled eggs and toast,
circles me like a wrestler in the ring,
bouncing on my bed,
and when I try to hide my head,
he dives under the blanket,
to drum my stomach
until it surrenders
a growl.
Prompt: six words: hole, friend, candle, ocean, snake, bucket or scarecrow

Celebration by the Sea
by Joan Bransfield Graham

My friend
and I scoop out
a hole in the sand, a
bucket to capture our own small

We build
a castle cake.
Water snakes through its halls.
Mud turrets rise and on top -- one
Aren't those wonderful?! Anyone want to join me in writing a poem on any of these prompts? If so, please do share! Happy writing!


  1. I so enjoy visiting you on Poetry Fridays for the poems AND the resources AND the invitations to join in. Truly, Live Your Poem is a playground for poets. Thank you!

    Prompt...three words: ring, drum, blanket

    This ring, it’s bling
    My heart a drum’s thrum
    our blanket serves a banquet for two
    I said, yes!

    I love reading "all" of an author. I will look up Myra Cohen for some ideas and inspiration. I also share the resource of Renee this week. Have a great week!

  2. Irene, Irene. Thank you. I have been wanting to read this book....and now it is on its way to me. What a lovely week for awards for talented poets. Good good news. Hug. xo

  3. Uplifting links, as always, dear Irene.
    And LOVE so much, the photograph of you two wonderful wordsmiths.

    prompt: rabbit

    Ms. Marsh Rabbit

    The nose knows
    what before her

    : JanAnnino all rights reserved

  4. I wish I had been in one of her classes too. Since I can't, I will have to find this book! Thanks for sharing it.

  5. What a wonderful post full of life.


    When I get out of my car,
    you eye me in the twilight.
    The sharp scent of clover
    and the call of a bluejay
    herald the fading light.
    You don't even bother
    to flee. You know me.
    I carry my groceries

    I would love to take a poetry class again. It's been so many years.

  6. So much goodness in this post, Irene! Must spend some time thinking about these prompts...and pick up this book. =)

  7. I love these prompts, and the inspiration to build and develop my craft. :-)

  8. I do have Myra's other book, Poem-Making, and this sounds lovely too, Irene. Since we have many rabbits "hopping about" I do love "pink-eyed poem". They are interesting to watch, but have been bad for the car.

    Was it THAT rabbit
    who crawled at night
    to nibble car wires
    he thought twas right?
    I cannot hate,
    because I know
    dear Bea Potter's stories
    of Peter and his flight.

  9. I love Myra Cohn Livingston. I'll have to look up her work and read it again! Also, LOVE the rabbit poem! Alice Schertle was an early mentor.

  10. Irene, this post is a wonderful compilation of poetry love. While I would love to write another poem with your prompt words, I am tapped out of time because I still have some PF posts to read before the tick tock of midnight.

  11. I love these poems and the challenges that inspired them. My brain is mush tonight, but I plan on coming back to play.

  12. Thanks for the good links and enthusiasm! Yes, a good week for poetry. I need to read more of Myra's work!

  13. Thanks for reminding us and giving us much to celebrate. It was a good week for poetry, and you made it better.

  14. ring, drum, blanket

    Chairs from the dining room
    set in a ring.
    Blankets from bedrooms
    draped on top.
    Come into my concert hall!
    What will you bring?
    Your drum and my shakers
    make a song that won't stop!

    Thanks for the opportunity, Irene!

  15. What a pleasure to read this post and all the wonderful poems... in the comments, too! I can't recall when I first heard that Schertle poem, but it's definitely a favorite. Looking forward to grabbing a used copy of I AM WRITING A POEM ABOUT on Amazon at my next opportunity.

  16. Thank you for linking back to this post that I missed. It's a treasure! I love Myra Cohn Livingston's work, and am excited to know about this book. I'll be ordering it soon!

  17. Thank you for linking back to this post, Irene. It's a treasure! I'll be ordering this book asap!


Your thoughts?