Friday, June 14, 2019

Poem for a Retiring Teacher



A few weeks ago, I was asked to write a poem for one of my former teaching colleagues who was retiring. I had worked with Robin for a dozen years. She came to my elementary school after I'd been teaching there for more than twenty years. She was a wonderful addition to our teaching staff. She was hard-working, dedicated, loved children, and got along well with everyone.

As I was thinking about how to approach writing a poem about my friend, a poem by Mary O'Neill titled Miss Norma Jean Pugh, First Grade Teacher came to mind. I pulled The Random House Book of Poetry for Children off the shelf and read the poem. It was the perfect inspiration for my poem about Robin.  (Click here to read O'Neill's poem.)

A POEM FOR ROBIN
By Elaine Magliaro

On a morning in May that's sunny and bright
When robins are singing with great delight
And butterflies flit through blossomed air
And lilac scents are everywhere
And honeybees buzz around apple trees
And you feel the breath of spring in a gentle breeze...
When your whole wide world seems fresh and new
And sparkles with beads of morning dew
And you'd like to fly a kite or climb a tree,
Play with your friends down by the sea,
Ride your bike and roller blade,
And have an exciting escapade--
Who cares if two and two are four...
Or five or six or even more?
Who cares if Earth is shaped like a sphere
Or December's the last month of the year?
Well, now I do--I really do
Even though I didn't used to--
Not until I met Mrs. Berg!
She's pretty old as teachers go--
Fifty-four or six or eight or so--
But she makes her students WANT to KNOW!

 ***************

Laura Shovan has the Poetry Friday Roundup this week.

 

 



Friday, May 24, 2019

FACING IT: A Poem for Memorial Day




 My father served in the army during World War II. One of my mother's first cousins, John Koziski, was  killed in that war. A number of my friends served in the Vietnam War. Two did not return home. I'm
 posting a poem by Yusef Komunyakaa in honor of them and all of our veterans who have served our 
 country during wartime.

 FACING IT
 By Yusef Komunyakaa

My black face fades,   
hiding inside the black granite.   
I said I wouldn't  
dammit: No tears.   
I'm stone. I'm flesh.   
My clouded reflection eyes me   
like a bird of prey, the profile of night   
slanted against morning. I turn   
 

this way—the stone lets me go.   
I turn that way—I'm inside   
the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
again, depending on the light
to make a differenceVietnam Veterans Memorial Located in Washington D.C., the Memorial is roughly 500 feet wide, and the names of soldiers who died in Vietnam are etched on its black granite walls. For more information and photos, visit The Wall-USA.
   


Click here to read the rest of the poem.




 
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Dani has the Poetry Friday Roundup at Doing the Work that Matters.

 

 

Friday, May 10, 2019

A Poem in Memory of My Beautiful Mother




A poem in memory of my beautiful mother Mary Koziski Drabik (February 24, 1918-January 5, 2017)
MOTHER'S DAY
by David Young

I see her doing something simple, paying bills,
or leafing through a magazine or book,
and wish that I could say, and she could hear,

that now I start to understand her love
for all of us, the fullness of it.

Click here to read the rest of the poem.
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My mother's last Mother's Day (2016)
Mother's Day 2012

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Elizabeth Steinglass has the Poetry Friday Roundup this week.




Friday, May 3, 2019

DOUBLE DACTYLS about Fairy Tales & Children's Books



Here are some double dactyls that I wrote years ago. All of them are about children’s books and fairy tales. Not sure that I adhered to the poetic form perfectly. Still, it was fun writing them!

Higgeldy piggeldy
Charlotte Cavatica,
Writer and weaver,
Spun tales for her friend,

Wilbur, the runt pig
She nurtured and cherished.
That spider was loyal
And true to the end.


Higgeldy piggeldy
Vegan Pete Rabbit
Pilfered some lettuce
And carrots and kale.

Mister McGregor
Chased after that bunny
But Peter escaped
By the fluff of his tail.

 
Higgeldy piggeldy
Poor Sleeping Beauty
Slumbered for decades
Because of a spell.

Prince Charming knelt down and
Kissed the prone princess.
They married. They’re happy.
There’s no more to tell.

 
Higgeldy piggeldy
Sad Cinderella
Sat in the ashes
Bemoaning her fate.

Godmother fairy
Said: “Honey, don’t blubber.
My magic will score you
A rich, handsome mate.”

 
Higgeldy piggeldy
Beauty was grossed out
Watching the ugly Beast
Nnoshing raw boar.

“God,” she said, “can’t you please
Masticate quietly!
Dining with you is
A distasteful chore.”
 
 
Higgeldy piggeldy
Max was a "wild thing,"
Got into mischief,
Was sent to his room,
 
Kicked up a rumpus
With Like-minded wild things.
Some kiddies go crazy
Once they leave the womb.

***************
Click here for the definition of the Double Dactyl from The Poetry Foundation.

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Jama has the Poetry Friday Roundup at her wonderful blog Alphabet Soup.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Announcing the winner of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book

 
Sorry for the delay in announcing the winner of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. I got wrapped up in watching the Mueller/Barr hearing yesterday and forgot what day it was!
 
I am happing to announce that Mary Lee Hahn of A Reading Year is the winner of YOU JUST WAIT. Congratulations, Mary Lee!


Tuesday, April 30, 2019

NPM: Two Poems for Children's Book Week: Post #21



Here are two poems that I wrote about children's books. I wrote A Book and a Chair when my daughter was young. I loved to read to her at night while we sat on a red-cushioned rocking chair in my bedroom. I wrote Things to Do If You Are a Book for my book THINGS TO DO. It was cut from the manuscript--and is not included in the book.
I'm posting the two poems in celebration of the 100th anniversary of Children's Book Week (April 29-May 5, 20190.)

A BOOK AND A CHAIR
A book and a chair
Are nice to share
When the edges of day
Are melting away
Into the night.

A book and a chair
Are nice to share…
Touching and talking,
Reading and rocking
Into the night.


THINGS TO DO IF YOU ARE A BOOK

Be filled with words that tell a tale
of a little mouse and a giant whale
of a runty pig and his spider friend
who was true and loyal to the end
of a badger who loved eating bread and jam
of a funky guy, green eggs, and ham
of a spunky girl named Ramona Q.
of a boy and the Jabberwock he slew.
Be filled with words and tell a tale
that will let my imagination sail.
Be a mystery
or a fantasy
or sing with sounds of poetry.
Between your covers
let there be
a story that’s just right for me.

 **********

Click here to download a copy of the 2019 Children's Book Week poster.
 
Click here to download activity sheets.

**********
 
BOOK GIVEAWAY
I'm giving away a copy of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. It's would be an excellent classroom resource for teachers of "tweens and teens."
To be entered into the drawing for the book, all you have to do is to comment on any of my Wild Rose Reader posts that I publish from April 23rd through April 30th. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, May 1st.

 

Sunday, April 28, 2019

NPM: A CHARMING PRINCE HAS SECOND THOUGHTS--A Funny Fairy Tale Poem: Post #20




Nearly twenty-five years ago, I began writing a collection of humorous fairy tale poems. I was inspired to write them after sharing some funny fairy tale poems written by Judith Viorst and X.J. Kennedy with my elementary students during the course of an extensive unit on traditional literature that I did in my classroom. I never submitted my collection to a publisher. Still, I had fun writing the poems--and sharing them with my students and members of my writing group.
 
 

A CHARMING PRINCE HAS SECOND THOUGHTS

By Elaine Magliaro
Listen…Sleeping Beauty snoring
Sounds just like a lion roaring!
If I kiss her cheek, she’ll rise
And look into my deep blue eyes.
She’ll fall in love with me no doubt.
I’m the only prince hereabout.

Should I kiss Beauty? Should I not?
In this dilemma I am caught.
If I wake her now she’s mine—
A roaring, snoring valentine!
I know they say that love is blind,
But it’s not deaf. I’m disinclined
To rouse this maid. I’ll let her snore
And dream of me forevermore.

 ***************
 
BOOK GIVEAWAY

I'm giving away a copy of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by SylviaVardell and Janet Wong. It's would be an excellent classroom resource for teachers of "tweens and teens."

To be entered into the drawing for the book, all you have to do is to comment on any of my Wild Rose Reader posts that I publish from April 23rd through April 30th. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, May 1st.

 

Saturday, April 27, 2019

NPM: Two Original Rain Poems & A Book Recommendation: Post #19


We've had a lot of rain lately. I thought I'd post a couple of rain poems that I wrote several years ago.

PUDDLE MUDDLE


I’m in the middle of a puddle…
in the middle…
in a muddle.

The puddle’s much too deep.
It spilled
into my boots.
Now they’re filled
with muddy water
to the brim.
I hope my feet
know how to swim!

IT'S RAINING

It’s raining…
Raining all around.
It’s raining puddles
On the ground.
It’s raining
On my booted feet.
It’s raining
Rivers in the street.
It’s raining cats.
It’s raining dogs.
It’s raining ponds
For polliwogs.
It’s raining
Drop by drop by drop…
A billion trillion—
It won’t stop!
It’s raining buckets
From the sky.
Don’t think the earth
Will EVER dry.
***************
More poems about rain can be found in ONE BIG RAIN: Poems for Rainy Days, which was compiled by Rita Gray and illustrated by Ryan O'Rourke.
 
One Big Rain is one delightful little anthology of poems about rain that takes readers through the year. Its twenty poems are divided equally among the four seasons. Most of the poems are brief; many paint vivid images with their words.

Gray selected several fine haikus for her book—including this one by Sora:

stars on the pond—
again, a pitter-patter
of winter rain
In One Big Rain, Gray includes works by well-known poets like Lilian Moore, Eve Merriam, Robert Frost, and Carl Sandburg—as well as works by poets whose names may not be familiar to many readers. The book also contains two poems translated from other languages (Norwegian and Spanish): Rain by Sigbjorn and The Sower by R. Olivares Figueroa. One of the things I like best about the One Big Rain is finding a few of my favorite weather poems that I haven’t read in anthologies in a long time.

One of those “favorite” poems is Eve Merriam’s Summer Rain. Here’s an excerpt from it:

A tickle, a trickle
A million-dot freckle
Speckles the spotted rain.

Like a cinnamon
Geranium
Smells the rainingest rain.

And here’s an excerpt from another “favorite”— Lilian Moore’s
Weather Report:

Ice-bearing trees,
a glass
orchard,
blinking
sunwinking.

A noonwind will
pass,
harvesting the brittle crop,
crashing
clinking.
 ***************
 
BOOK GIVEAWAY
I'm giving away a copy of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. It's would be an excellent classroom resource for teachers of "tweens and teens."
To be entered into the drawing for the book, all you have to do is to comment on any of my Wild Rose Reader posts that I publish from April 23rd through April 30th. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, May 1st.

 

Friday, April 26, 2019

NPM: Rhyming Acrostics: Post #18


I dug up some old poems that I wrote about a decade ago when I was working on a collection of rhyming acrostics. Here are seven of them:

Changes suits to suit
His locus. Abracadabra! Hocus-pocus! He’s
A clever
Master of disguise…a trickster who can fool the
Eyes! This
Lizard with a fashion flair takes his wardrobe
Everywhere. Predators don’t stop
Or stare.
No one even knows he’s there.
 
Fiery flowers bloom
In the night:
Roses, carnations…chrysanthemums, too,
Emerald green, red,
White, and blue. Silvery fountains spill
Out of the sky.
Rockets of gold sizzle and sigh.
Kaleidoscope colors cascade in space,
Showering glitter all over the place.
 
Cans of people,
Automobiles
Roaring down roads on
Silver-capped wheels.
 
Claw-handed critter
Races sideways, skitters
Across sea-washed land…
Beachcombing in the sand.
 
Dawn, dressed in a bright blue robe
And golden slippers,
Yawns awake. Stars scurry away.
Breaking into song, birds
Rouse the sun,
Eager to start
A new day. Morning bounds out of bed with delight,
Kicking off the dark cover of night.
 
Silent sidekick, shape shifter who
Hides in the darkness…
A copycat mimicking everything you
Do. Sunny day playmate frolics in the light.
Oh, where, oh,
Where does it go at night?
 
Words
Hushed
In soft velvet
Sounds
Patter into your
Ear
Revealing deep secrets that no one
Should hear.
 

***************
 Wild Rose Reader Posts from Earlier This Week



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BOOK GIVEAWAY
I'm giving away a copy of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. It's would be an excellent classroom resource for teachers of "tweens and teens."
To be entered into the drawing for the book, all you have to do is to comment on any of my Wild Rose Reader posts that I publish from April 23rd through April 30th. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, May 1st.
***************

Carol V. has this week's Poetry Friday Roundup at Beyond LiteracyLink.

 

 

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

NPM: THERE WAS A WITCH-An Original Poem: Post #17

I originally posted There Was a Witch on this blog years ago. Quite some time after that, the poet and anthologist John Foster told me he'd like to include it in a book of space poems that he was compiling. I've sold poems that I've posted at Wild Rose Reader to publishers in New Zealand and the UK. Later this year, an educational publisher in the Republic of Ireland plans to publish a book that will include two of my poems about asteroids. I was told that my poems "would be reproduced in full and followed by activities for students to complete. The publication is strictly intended for educational purposes and is aimed at students aged 11-12 at primary level."

There Was a Witch can be found in A ROCKETFUL OF SPACE POEMS.
 
THERE WAS A WITCH
By Elaine Magliaro
 
There was a witch who liked to race
Her supersonic broom through space.
At six o'clock last Friday night
She blasted off at speed of light.
She whizzed past Mercury and Mars...
Then headed off toward distant stars.
Across the galaxy she sped,
A black peaked helmet on her head.
An interstellar traveler, she
Explored the Milky Way with glee.
She chased swift comets here and there.
She watched bright supernovae flare.
She zipped through clouds of cosmic dust...
A witch bewitched by wanderlust.
There was a witch, I'm sad to say,
Flew near a big black hole one day.
It sucked her in just like a bean.
You won't see HER on Halloween!

 **********
 
BOOK GIVEAWAY
I'm giving away a copy of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. It's would be an excellent classroom resource for teachers of "tweens and teens."
To be entered into the drawing for the book, all you have to do is to comment on any of my Wild Rose Reader posts that I publish from April 23rd through April 30th. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, May 1st.

 

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

NPM: TOO LITTLE!-An Original Poem: Post #16

 


Last week, I posted a poem titled SO SMALL that was told in the voice of a young child who was tired of being smaller than everyone he/she knew. Today, I have a poem titled TOO LITTLE! that is a good companion for TOO SMALL. In this poem, a young child wishes to be bigger so he/she can do more things that most little kids aren't allowed to do.

TOO LITTLE!
By Elaine Magliaro

THEY say
I’m TOO LITTLE for this…
I’m TOO LITTLE for that.
I’m too little to do SO MANY things.
DRAT!
I wish I were big like my sister and brother.
I wish I were big like my father and mother.
I wish I were BIG—as be as can be…
Like the giant blue whale who lives in the sea.
There wouldn’t be ANYTHING bigger than me!
Then I’d shout and I’d spout, “Make way, make way!
I’m going to go where I want today.
I’m going to do what I want to do.
And you can’t say no ’cause I’m bigger than you!”
 
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BOOK GIVEAWAY

I'm giving away a copy of YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong. It would be an excellent classroom resource for teachers of "tweens and teens."
To be entered into the drawing for the book, all you have to do is to comment on any of my Wild Rose Reader posts that I publish from April 23rd through April 30th. I'll announce the winner on Wednesday, May 1st.
About the Book

YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book for tweens and teens, features 12 PowerPack sets that contain five elements: 1) a PowerPlay prewriting activity; 2) a previously-published Outside Poem (in this case, from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School); 3) a new original Response Poem; 4) a new original Mentor Text poem; and 5) a Power2You writing prompt. PowerPacks = a fun and inspiring approach for a wide variety of readers and writers. Curious? Take a look!
The twelve Outside Poems from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School (an NCTE Poetry Notable) were written by Robyn Hood Black, Joseph Bruchac, Jen Bryant, Margarita Engle, Julie Larios, Carmen T. Bernier-Grand, Charles Ghigna, Avis Harley, Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Charles Waters, and Virginia Euwer Wolff. The way they are joined together here with twenty-four new poems by Janet Wong, they form a story featuring Paz, an Asian-Latina soccer player with dreams of stardom in college, the Olympics, and ultimately the World Cup; Lucesita, her feisty movie-loving cousin; and Joe, an older brother with dreams of the NBA. Sylvia Vardell’s inventive PowerPlay activities make it easy for writers to get inspired, while her Power2You writing prompts extend learning. Vardell also created extensive back matter resources for readers and writers.

Click here for resources you can use with YOU JUST WAIT: A Poetry Friday Power Book.