Friday, June 11, 2010

POETRY FRIDAY: The Subject Is Grass

Last year, my husband bought one of those old-fashioned push mowers. Recently, I decided to take over the chore of mowing our lawn. I had never liked the gas-powered mower we had years ago—and I had trouble with our electric mower’s cord always getting in my way. But I love cutting the grass with the push mower. It’s great exercise for me--and much less boring than pumping on my exercycle while lifting weights. I do the front lawn one day—and the back yard the next day. I'm a bit obsessive about the way I cut and trim the grass...but our lawn has never
looked better!

With grass on my mind, I give you two original poems—a “things to do” list poem and an acrostic—as well as a favorite poem on the subject by the great Valerie Worth.


Live on a hillside meadow.
Grow tall
and golden as summer sun.
Hide fluffy field mice
and a symphony of crickets.
Welcome wildflowers,
honeybees, and butterflies.
Drink the fallen rain.
Bend and sway
to the rhythm
of the wind
and dance.

Green carpets the ground,
Reaches over the hills, blankets the broad valley,
And across the wide prairie, stalks of tall golden grain
Sway in the wind
Singing the song of the plain.

by Valerie Worth

Grass on the lawn
Says nothing:
Clipped, empty,

Grass in the fields
Whistles, slides,
casts up a foam
Of seeds,

Tangles itself
With leaves: hides
Whole rustling schools
Of mice.

Book Recommendation
All the Small Poems and Fourteen More
Written by Valerie Worth
Illustrated by Natalie Babbitt

This wonderful poetry classic is a compilation of four of Worth’s earlier collections—Small Poems, More Small Poems, Still More Small Poems, and Small Poems Again—and it includes fourteen additional poems. Every elementary teacher should have a copy of this paperback book in her classroom collection.


At Blue Rose Girls: Sticking with the "grass" theme, I have a poem by Robert Wrigley entitled Mowing--which is really about more than cutting a lawn.

Kelly Polark is doing the Poetry Friday Roundup this week.


Bridget R. Wilson said...

Great poems, Elaine. I especially like "Things to do..."

jama said...

I envy your nicely mowed lawn. We don't have any grass at the moment! DH killed everything because of weeds and is replanting.

Love these poems,especially "Things to Do . . ." The symphony of crickets is wonderful, and I love the image of the grass bending and swaying.

Toby Speed said...

I love Things to Do If You Are Grass! Thanks, Elaine.

Elaine Magliaro said...

Bridget, Jama, and Toby--

Thanks for your comments. I'm reworking my "Things to Do" collection of poems. Grace Lin gave me a terrific idea. I've eliminated some of the original poems and written new ones. Now it's a more cohesive collection. I hope some editor will like it.

Mary Lee said...

Happy mowing! And good luck getting your new (old become new, that is) collection published!!!

Kelly Polark said...

Oh, I love these. My favorite color is green. It's all because of the beautiful green grass and leaves on the trees in the spring and summer. Love it!

laurasalas said...

These are so great, Elaine! What I love about both your poems and Valerie's is the motion you see and share in the grass. It's not static at all, but wild, waving, dancing...lovely.