Friday, April 9, 2021

ArtSpeak: FOUR SEASONS poem "if god was a season"


Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference for Roundup. 

This week I zoomed with 4th graders at the International School in Bangkok. It's a 12 hour difference, so I presented at 9:30 pm my time to be in their 9:30 am classrooms. What a fabulous experience! I'll be reading and responding to these students' biography writing over the next few weeks.

I also presented with my editor Karen Boss to SLJ folks about D-39: A Robodog's Journey... which comes out next month! So I've been working on All the Things that go along with a book's release. Exciting!

I've got another poetry book to give away this week:

You may know Maggie Smith from her viral poem "Good Bones." Learn more about this book here. Simply leave a comment, and our cat Maggie (!) will select a winner on Sunday!

This week's ArtSpeak: FOUR SEASONS poem comes from a prompt that's been haunting me for some weeks now... and then I was perusing my Spring file of art... and voila! I found a match! I decided to use the prompt with this piece of art in mind. Thank you so much for reading.

if god was a season, it would be spring

for we are made
of riotous bouquets
and glossy green

yes, rooted
        by fear
yet still we stretch
toward something

god fills our eyes
nose   mouth   ears,
calls us to worship

each new shoot
and bloom
showing us growth
is beautiful,
and beauty is brave.

- Irene Latham

(The prompt was: if god was a season.)


  1. Yes, riotous is the perfect word! Happy Poetry Friday to you and both the Maggies.

  2. I'm looking forward to your new 'Robodog', Irene! Working with that class so far away does sound like lots of fun for you and them. The poem is lovely, such a celebration we all need, "yet still we stretch". I spied my first blooming tree yesterday! Happy weekend!

  3. "yet still we stretch" So hopeful. That is spring. Rebirth no matter what. And yes, "beauty is brave." Lovely.

  4. Lovely poem, and the art is perfect!! Looking forward to the new Robodog book too. You're a busy bee! Awesome experience to zoom with students in Bangkok!!

  5. Beauty IS brave. That's what I've been learning (among other things) these quiet months.

  6. Oh, WOW.
    Let me know when this poem's in a book so I can buy it, okay?
    Thank you so much for sharing.

    1. Hi Tanita! Maggie selected you at this week's book winner! Please email me at irene (at) irenelatham (dot) come with your mailing address. Thank you!

  7. Riotous bouquets is a line to steal! I love this poem so much. Thanks for the giveaway. What a treat! (My school account makes me anonymous, but this is Margaret Simon)

  8. Ditch worship can be a pretty tough one!
    So many flowers blooming in any one person. Amazing. xo

  9. Wonderful poem. It feels so alive and fully of joy...the spring...god. A brave breath. Love it.

  10. Congrats on your classroom 'visit', Irene. This year, god of spring has been filling my "eyes nose mouth ears" with pollen. Thank goodness I can bravely lean into the beauty with antihistamines. ;)

  11. To your poem, I say YES.
    I can't even pick a favorite stanza or line. I guess I'll have to copy the whole thing into my notebook. Maybe even make my own art to go with it. Thank you.

  12. So much to love in every single line. It's definitely one to keep and savor. Here's my favorite phrase:
    "yet still we stretch
    toward something

  13. Irene, those first two lines--for we are made
    of riotous bouquets. "for we are made" sounds so formal and traditional and ordered and hymnlike. And then "of riotous bouquets" shoots that mood to hell and brings an explosion of human emotion and experience into the poem. What a fabulous effect (and a lovely poem). We saw a couple of Arcimboldo's works in this series at the Kunsthistorisches in Vienna. I'm not even an art museum person, but these piece are a punch in the gut. They're mesmerizing.

  14. So much to love about this poem, starting with the way the title flows into the first line and continuing through dreams, stretching, and beauty. Wonderful poem!

  15. How powerful your poem is! Spring, the season of renewal leads us to "stretch toward something brighter" with the hand of God. Irene, there is so much to love with your words. Thanks for the "Good Bones" poem. I need to peek into more of your Art Speak poems. Thank you for the "live your poem" card. I love it!


Your thoughts?