Friday, October 21, 2022

Picasso Dachshund dog poem

 Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! Be sure to visit Bridget at wee words for wee ones for Roundup.

Last weekend we had our community fall festival. It was so great to see friends and neighbors enjoying pumpkin painting, scarecrows, food & craft vendors, hayrides, and so much more... I was in charge of the silent auction, which brought in over $800 to turn back around into community programming. DH Paul was in charge of grilling 200 hot dogs. :) (This is an oddly appropriate thing to include in this post! Read on!)

Irene & Dahlia
(in front of Floyd Cooper art)
A few days before that, I was at Highlights, where I met for the first time in person my friend Dahlia Hamza Constantine. Joy! Dahlia and I have written a picture book together that celebrates the joyful relationship between a girl and her grandfather "Giddo"— and traditional Egyptian arts like the Tentmakers of Cairo. It will be released by Nancy Paulsen Books in 2025. :)

Dahlia brought me issues of a new-to-me magazine from the UK called Daphne's Diary. It is full of whimsy and just thumbing the pages is an Artist's Date. This week I played with butterflies from inside the pages...and I'm still playing!

Irene & Charles hanging out on the
porch of cabin #10, where Poetry Friday
friends Laura Shovan, Linda Mitchell,
and Rose Capelli stayed before me!
More about Highlights: It was my first time to visit, thanks to Charles Waters, who has a long history at Highlights. His enthusiasm was absolutely my favorite thing about the experience—especially as everything he's ever said about the people and place is 100% true. Beautiful, beautiful! And our group was so kind and brilliant! We really bonded over words and risk-taking and dreams...also, the fabulous Carol Hinz was there. I took so many notes during her talk and had a breakthrough on a wip. :) I'm so, so grateful and look forward to the beauty this group will be bringing into the world and especially into the lives of children. 

And this just in from that amazing publishing duo Janet Wong and Sylvia Vardell. I loved writing about friends both far away...and furry!

Today's Artspeak: Animals poem reminds me of the one Dachshund we ever owned, a black-n-tan cutie named Chester. Perhaps you have or have had a Dachshund in your life?? Do tell!

Meanwhile, the end is in sight for this Picasso mini-series...I'm thinking I'll write 2-3 more and then move onto something else. Thanks so much for reading!

whole long body

a smile perched on stubby legs

this dog

- Irene Latham


  1. Oh, Irene, you know how to bring it all 'together'! What joy in a community fall festival, in the Highlights workshop with amazing people all around, and of course, in a dog poem. A dachshund no less. (A favorite breed of mine...don't tell Smidgey.) When we were in Vienna (in German it is Wien) last week we saw a few of these pups - true Wienerdogs! :)

  2. I had the pleasure of being at Highlights when Charles was there, and considering your close relationship, it must have been days full of joy, Irene. His enthusiasm is catching! And then, connecting with another makes all your days such fun. That new picture book sounds lovely. Sad to see that Picasso may be ending. I have loved how you've helped his quick sketches become your own quick word captures. Congrats on the money-making, too! Happy Weekend!

  3. Wow, so much goodness here. I'm sure your Highlights intensive was amazing. And that "smile perched on stubby legs" is perfect. No Dachsunds in our family, but I'd love there to be one :>)

  4. Yes! My Great-Grandmother had a daschund named, Otto. He wasn't very friendly. But, she loved him. I got to attend Highlights once and it is absolutely perfect. I'm so glad you've now gone. And, I'm crossing my fingers that you'll get to go back. It's such a special and magical place of inspiration.

  5. I am humbled to have a poem included in an anthology with your work, Irene! I've never owned a dachshund -- but am partial to black, tan, and WHITE of Bernese Mtn dogs (who also smile, but atop quite longer legs) - :)

  6. There is so much goodness in this post, I don't know where to start. I'm so thrilled you got to go to Highlights. I hope to attend one of your workshops there one day! And I'm honored to be published alongside you in the WHAT IS A FRIEND? anthology. I love your Picasso poems. Can't wait to see what you do next.

  7. So much to celebrate in your post, in your life. I had a dachshund for 12 years named Isabel. I got her when I wanted to have another baby. Ha! A dog is much more practical.

  8. I kept waiting and waiting for the connection to the hotdogs...and then almost missed it! HAH! I'll make it to Highlights Poetry someday...

  9. Here's a week I'd like to live--a balance of indoor and out, of giving and receiving, of making and minding. I'm smiling atop my stubby legs.

  10. Thank you for all this wonder, Irene. Highlights is truly a special place and what a joy for you to be able to share that space with people you are so connected to. I'm heading there next month for a retreat with my critique group. I've been enjoying your Picasso series and will be sorry to see it end, although I know you'll always have something here that is equally as inspiring.

  11. Your time at Highlights sounds beautiful! And I continue to enjoy the Picasso Artspeak series. We've never had a Dachshund but my 20-yr. old is obsessed with them. :) They are so cute! I still remember my grandmother's Dachshund, Heidi. I adored her.


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