Friday, September 4, 2020

What Dogs Dream Of -- NIGHT WISHES, Poems Selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins


Hello and Happy Poetry Friday. Be sure to visit Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink for Roundup. 

How can it be Labor Day weekend?! It just doesn't seem possible. And yet... here we are at the end of lake season and the beginning of (hopefully) less intense heat. We're donning our masks and heading to a high school football game tonight, in hopes of feeling somewhat "normal" and part of our community. Next weekend there's an open house for our town's community theater, which, in spite of covid, has moved to a new (beautiful) location  -- which means more community, and the promise of exciting things to come.

In other news, a single author copy of THIS POEM IS A NEST arrived in my mailbox! This book means so much to me, and I love its intimate trim size, how carry-around-able it is, and how lovely. Here's a video to give you a sneak peek, too. It's available for pre-order now, and will be on sale September 29. YAY!

Now for today's offering: my poem in NIGHT WISHES, poems selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins, illus. by Jen Corace (Eerdman's, 2020). This is such a sweet little book! Congratulations to all the contributors. I'm so pleased to be included. :)

I was delighted when Lee asked me to write a poem about a dog... and the beach-loving dog I created for the poem came to life in our Rosie! She loves the beach. So while she wasn't born yet when I wrote this poem, I don't think it's a coincidence that Rosie is ours... and I bet she has dreams just like the one in this poem.

by Irene Latham

You're sleepy-still
Your breathing’s deep. . .

Remember the day we dug a hole?
Played chase with the surf?
You gathered seashells
while I spun in happy-yappy circles.

When blazing sun and burning sand
made your eyes start to blur,
we curled together under
a wide, striped umbrella.

You are my runner, my snuggler,
my best-ever fetch-er.
Are you dreaming now – like I am –
about our next adventure?

... and here's a picture of Rosie last month at the beach!

Finally, here's my latest ArtSpeak! RED offering. Thank you so much for reading!

Hello, Neighborhood

Do houses have thoughts?

What if they could talk?

What if their windows
aren't eyes,
                   but mouths?

Oh oh oh
Now I know –

all the houses on my street
are blowing kisses,
                   making wishes.

They're asking me
in stereo
to stop and say hello

hello hello hello

- Irene Latham


  1. My house says, "hello, hello, hello" back. I'm looking forward to reading This Poem is a Nest. I love the entire idea and look of the book. Many congratulations on its publication.

  2. Congrats on This Poem is a Nest (can't wait to read it!) and the Kirkus star!! Love the poems you shared today (Rosie is adorable), and the neighborhood poem is charming and winsome. Hello hello hello!

  3. I'm hoping to share about your "nest" soon, Irene. It is special, as is that prescient poem about Rosie. I watch a couple with their dog every morning, in a gallop for it fetch, so love the "my best-ever fetch-er." and then your red poem is special, too. I won't go out walking now without thinking those houses are calling to me! Have a lovely weekend, sounds very nice!

  4. There is so much on your website! I explore more and more each week and love your ArtSpeak work. Your poems, like the ones you shared today have so much heart and optimism. Congratulations on Nine, and all your recent published work!

  5. Rosie is just precious! Hope you enjoy your normalcy and savor your new Nest! xo

  6. Smiles, smiles, smiles over here today, Irene - thank you for this sunshine-y post. Can't wait to get me a copy of your carry-around-able new collection! Rosie is too adorable... XO

  7. Congrats all around on "This Poem Is A Nest" and your "Dog" poem–I love the voice coming from the dog. And what an adorable doggie you have! Houses "blowing kisses,
    making wishes." how delightful and enchanting, thanks for all Irene! xo

  8. Your posts are always such a pick-me up, Irene! Like everyone, I am so happy for you about This Poem is a Nest! I can't wait to get a copy. Rosie is so sweet, and I love that your poem is in her voice. I want a poster of "Hello, Neighborhood" for my classroom. It's so inviting!

  9. Irene, I just tweeted This Poem Is a Nest video link as a congratulations to you for your beautiful work in the poetry field. Your post is full of goodness today. I love your dog poem and Rosie is adorable. I can imagine how much she loves to be at the beach. I am wondering if you would like to offer your dog poem with the pic of Rosie for my Embraceable Summer Gallery. It would be a great image poem. I send my love and wishes to your neighborhood houses from ours.

  10. I was thinking about your NEST when I read (listened to -- the author reads -- highly recommend) the essay by the same name in Helen Macdonald's new book VESPER FLIGHTS.

    Thank you for doing so well what poets do best -- give us another way to look at the world. House will forever be blowing me kisses because of you!

  11. My pup, Smidgey and I are spinning "in happy-yappy circles" for This Poem is a Nest, Night Wishes, Rosie (Smidgey says especially Rosie) and your Hello Neighborhood poem! So much goodness in this poem and in your future, Irene. Thanks for sharing it with us. :)

  12. Congratulations on all the goodness. THIS POEM IS A NEST looks delightful. I love all those houses blowing kisses and saying hello. And Rosie is adorable.

  13. Your poem is so upbeat--filled with exciting news and cheerful poems. Congratulations on "This Poem is a Nest!" I really can't wait to read it. I also love your "Hello, Neighborhood" poem and agree with Catherine that it would make a wonderful poster!

  14. These are both just delightful. I love that you wrote about Rosie (practically) even before she was in your life. And those houses blowing kisses...I love the worlds your poems create. Can't wait to read NEST!

  15. Well, either I dreamed that I left a comment, or it's awaiting moderation, or I'm crazy. All three could be true. :)

  16. So, I'll try again. :) Congrats on THIS POEM IS A NEST! And, your Rosie looks so delightfully sweet. I love the way you will her (or rather, poem-ified her) into existence. :)


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