Friday, February 25, 2022

Hope Has Long Legs (poem)

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure and visit Tricia at Miss Rumphius Effect for Roundup.

Well, it's been a rough week in these parts. I've been sick! But I'm improving now, thank goodness! Just in time for my birthday. :)  HAPPY! HAPPY! to all the others in our community who have birthday around this time.

I do have an ArtSpeak: Animals poem for you. This time, a stork! 

My favorite storks from childhood:

The stork that brings baby Dumbo in the Disney movie.


These days we spend a lot of time watching stork-like blue herons at the shore of our lake. They definitely do a lot of watching and waiting...

thank you so much for reading!

Hope Has Long Legs

It wades all day
in the shallows


time nothing more
than a ripple
of minnows, mice

each moment
a feast
of sunlight
and possibility

- Irene Latham

Friday, February 18, 2022

Pride Has 12 Points (poem)

Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Laura at Small Reads for Brighter Days for Roundup.

Goodness, what a week!
Charles Waters and I traveled to Africatown to share our book as part of The Spirits of Our Ancestors festival. It was A-MAZ-ING!

I was a visitor on Reading With Your Kids podcast about SNAIL'S ARK in such a lovely, rich discussion... Link coming soon!

I joined Charles, our editor Stacey Barney, and other verse novelists Ellen Hagen and Colby Cedar Smith in a beautiful evening of poetry and history and books. View the recording here.

I launched my first-ever digital course for writers by presenting 2 FREE Masterclasses... THANK YOU for joining me!!

In case you missed it, enrollment is now open for Wild & Precious Writer: How to Optimize Your Creativity for More Joy, Confidence, and Your Best Writing Yet! (enrollment will close next Thursday, Feb. 24)

And... I'm not done yet! (Though I am feeling a bit under the weather...) The final free Masterclass will be next Wednesday, Feb. 23, 4 pm cst. Register here.

Meanwhile, here's the latest poem in ArtSpeak: Animals. Poets, please note: this poem shifted to first person (all the others in this series are third person)... I mean, "pride!" It HAS to be in first person, yes? Thank you for reading!

Pride Has 12 Points

I hold my head high,

I look the world
in the eye.

Whatever winds blow,

whatever the day's

I climb.

This mountaintop?


- Irene Latham

Friday, February 11, 2022

Forgiveness is a Small Bird (poem)

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit lovely Linda at TeacherDance for Roundup.

I am away from my desk today, visiting Africatown with Charles Waters!

But I do have some news for you, and a poem.


I'm offering a FREE Masterclass for writers entitled Optimal Creativity Has Nothing to Do With Discipline: 3 Myths That Can Wreck our Writing (and What to Do Instead). 

I'm super-excited to share this content with all of you! The things I'll be sharing have been game-changers in my writing life, and I know they can make a difference in your writing life as well. I'll also be sharing how you can work with me. :)

Pick your time (3 options!), and I'll see you there! Click here for the registration page.

In case you missed it: This month's Homeschool Poetry Party featured LOVE poems, of course! View the video here.

And now for today's poem! If Carel Fabritius's Goldfinch piece wasn't already a favorite, it gained even more fans when Donna Tartt's Pulitzer Prize winning book THE GOLDFINCH was released (and also adapted for film). 

I puzzled for several days about what metaphor I wanted to lend this piece...and then voila! it came to me, and it feels just-right. (Turns out, during the time this painting was created, people were fond of keeping goldfinches as pets. It's hard to see the chain attached to the bird's leg in the painting, but look closer, it's there.)

Thank you so much for reading!

Forgiveness is a Small Bird


it will lift 

into the sky

sun kissing

its wings 

-Irene Latham

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

Friday, February 4, 2022

Confidence Wears a Prickly Coat (poem)


Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Elisabeth at Unexpected Intersections for Roundup.

I've got snails on my mind...because SNAIL'S ARK comes out next Tuesday! It features gorgeous illustrations by Mehrdokht Amini—who also did the illustrations for DICTIONARY FOR A BETTER WORLD. (The wooden Noah's Ark is a treasure I found recently at a yard sale!)

...and Kat Apel has a snail book coming, too: WHAT SNAIL KNOWS. It's a middle grade verse novel about a shy kid... I can't wait to read it!!

AND I've got CONFIDENCE on my mind, too. Who better than a (prickly) hedgehog to deliver this message? I'm sure there are many animals that could do it, but I'm particularly attracted to quiet confidence. And so...

Confidence Wears a Prickly Coat

it forages
with soft,
quick feet

it rolls
into a simple

stays round,

until it's ready
to amble on

- Irene Latham

Thanks so much for reading!