Friday, August 26, 2022

Picasso penguin poem

Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Tanita at fiction, instead of lies for Roundup.

I'm away from my desk this week, but I do have for you the latest in my ArtSpeak: Animals Picasso mini-series. 

This week, a penguin! Picasso's penguin reminds me of the Penguin Books (one of my publishers!) logo, which is pretty basic:

...and it makes me think of the book Mr. Popper's Penguins, which I love. 

And who can forget the penguin dance in Mary Poppins? (Makes me smile every time!)'s not my first time to tackle penguins. WHEN THE SUN SHINES ON ANTARCTICA (Lerner, 2016), with illus. by Anna Wadham, features nature poems about four kinds of penguins who nest on the frozen continent: Adelie, gentoo, Emperor, and chinstrap penguins...for which I was able to cover penguin courtship, nesting, fledgling, and play time!

Other have found inspiration in penguins, too. Pablo Neruda in his poem "Magellanic Penguin" includes this stanza:

Penguin, static traveler,
deliberate priest of the cold,
I salute your vertical salt
and envy your plumed pride.

read the complete poem here.

Finally, here's today's effort. Thank you so much for reading!

penguin surveys waves

only one leap between ice

and deepwater flight

- Irene Latham

Friday, August 19, 2022

Picasso Flamingo poem

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Dave at Leap of Dave for Roundup. 

You know that feeling when you finally finish a big, consuming project, and experience the relief and euphoria of being DONE—only to find yourself floundering a bit, lost and confused, not knowing where to send your energy next?

That's been me this week. 

It's just weird to not have focus after being ultra-focused for several months. I've tried to be gentle with myself, reading a lot, letting whatever's next find me, instead of pressing so hard into the (writing)'s okay to take it easy sometimes. 

Perhaps it's these thoughts that influenced my latest effort in my ArtSpeak: Animals Picasso mini-series. Please meet Picasso's flamingo...thanks so much for reading!

flamingo poses

in shrinking summer puddle

rain dance

-Irene Latham

Friday, August 12, 2022

Picasso Dog Poem

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Margaret at Reflections on the Teche for Roundup.

I'm continuing my ArtSpeak: Animals Picasso mini-series this week with a dog drawing. 

I'm not sure what Picasso intended when he drew this dog, but to me, it looks like a dog vigorously scratching—on the side that we cannot see. (What do YOU see?) Thanks so much for reading. 

dog can't stop

tiny itchy visitors

summer picnic

- Irene Latham

Friday, August 5, 2022

Picasso Cat poem


Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Molly at Nix the Comfort Zone for Roundup.

Earlier this week BE A BRIDGE was released! It's the 4th book Charles Waters and I have created together (brought to us by Carolrhoda/Lerner, illustrations by Nabila Adani), all about acceptance and inclusivity, with some really concrete ways even very young kids can practice being a bridge. It's got some fun, useful back matter, too, to extend this topic through activities and a Bridge Builder Pledge. 

We can all be bridge builders!

This week's ArtSpeak: Animals poems begins a new sub-series I'm doing. Recently I spied in an antique shop a framed set of 6 of Picasso's simple line animal drawings. I took a picture, and when I came home, I discovered Picasso did 24 of these! 

I'm excited to write poems for them....starting with this cat. :) Thank you so much for reading.

old cat wakes

stretches snow out of bones

morning prayer

- Irene Latham