Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

Interview with Poet Amy Ludwig VanDerwater

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

Podcast with Amy Ludwig VanDerwaterImage of Amy Ludwig VanDerwater is by Melissa Deakin

It was my delight and privilege to talk with Amy Ludwig VanDerwater. Her poetry is delicious—like a strawberry smoothie or a fresh mint lemonade. She brings vowels and consonants together in ways that leave the mouth happy and satisfied.

Not only that, her family lives in the countryside and has made the choice to not have a television. One way they fill those hours is to explore the great outdoors right beyond their backyard. Amy readily admits that she did not know the names of plants, trees, mosses, and wildflowers when she began. But together with her science-loving husband and two children, they grew in their ability to recognize and name the natural world around them. You will see those affinities in her poetry which bursts with detail and nomenclature.

I also enjoyed Amy’s enthusiasm for children. She shares a love of writing and the belief that all children are writers already. She calls them “walking poems.”

Amy’s first book, Forest Has a Song, has received many praises, including the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award. Amy also recently released her new book, Every Day Birds (affiliate links).

Enjoy our conversation, and please do check out her books!

Here’s the link Amy mentions in the podcast: The Private Eye

Read Amy’s written interview on the Poetry Teatime blog!

Interview with Poet Marilyn Singer

Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

Poetry Teatime Interview with Marilyn Singer

Welcome to our first Poetry Teatime Podcast!

I was honored to interview Marilyn Singer, award-winning poet and author. Marilyn and I met for the interview long distance—she, in her home in Brooklyn, and me, Julie, in a library in Cincinnati.

Unfortunately the library failed us, a bit. The Internet connection was variable throughout and you will notice that in the recording. Stay with it, though. The content is fabulous (delightful) and the sound improves. You will hear the cooing of her doves in the background at times, too. Enjoy!

Also, be sure to explore Marilyn’s wonderful books of poetry, including Mirror Mirror and its sequel Follow Follow! (affiliate links)

Learn more about Marilyn on our new Poetry Teatime website!

Playing with Poetry: Student Poems

Wednesday, December 30th, 2015

Playing with Poetry Student Poems

Enjoy these fabulous student poems written for our Playing with Poetry online class
taught by the lovely Susanne Barrett!

Sweet Dreams

Shape Poem by Hunter (age 10)

When

the sun goes to sleep,

and there seems to be no light

But in that small second this dim light

like a lamp in the living room. This moon

is shining the night with a glow with white

or yellow, I am not sure why, and who knows,

maybe that night you look up and you watch the night full of stars

the satellites moving above the earth

and maybe if you are lucky,

then you could find a shooting star

and make a wish

and sit near the fireplace

have a happy conversation

under this moon calms you down

after your busy day

and you fall asleep

with a smile on your face.

Pink Peaches

Haiku by Mark (14)

The fat pink peaches
grow heavily ripe on trees,
bending branches low.

Sense of Clarity

Tanka poem by Emma (15)

Breaking through the grey

glass of queries and blindness.

Reaching for the end

of a tunnel’s dark, mad eyes,

where a river flows still sane.

Nature

Fragmented poem by Sara (18)

The wild blistering wind.

The jumping fish along with the stream.

The birds heading north.

The gleaming water.

As sunshine peaks from the trees.

As things come out from hibernation.

As backpackers trek through the forest.

The sleepy earth now awoken.

As the Swan Dreams

Fragmented poem by Emma (15)

as the swan dreams,

of wings in silver capes,

flying in beautiful serenity,

breaking and chipping through places not fathomed

nor figured out when insides its mazes.

sweeping over blood red forests and glass rivers

and hugging the crisp breaths from below.

as curious eyes from the ground watch above

hello falls,

kissing them sweetly.

And the wind whistles out

the calls of nature within and the world around.

Now once in time,

opening its shields to a realization of truth,

that such dream wasn’t a lie,

but a vivid reality.

Fractals

Concrete poem by Joeli (13)

Playing with Poetry - Concrete Poem

Playing with Poetry Workshop

Feeling victory

Wednesday, December 9th, 2015

Feeling victory!

From Brave Writer mom Ali:

I stayed myself as I prepared for battle, the writing battle! I had a plan to break the news of the latest project gently. Taking slow steps, small bits being spoon-fed each day. We wrote similes together, taking turns being the one who gave the starter (the potato chip is) and the one to give the comparison (as crunchy as leaves on a cold, fall hike).

We described the dog together and my daughter’s interactions with him. Then I decided to let her go and I realized that it was only Monday. The first day of our work. No need to hand-hold and spoon-feed, she was off at a full pace. And what she created? Who’s writing is this? I know that this is an original work but, how did you get these ideas? There was only one spelling mistake. There were two similes that were weak, a stretch, but they still fit the “rules.” Where are the editing notes that I need to make. There are none. NONE. We rejoiced and savored the words of her poem. Not wanting to lose our momentum and enthusiasm, we started again with listing similes.

Now it’s Wednesday, we’ve completed the writing assignment for the week and we are both still feeling victory. So much victory in fact, she is writing her second simile poem.

Thank you! Not all of the projects we do are this enjoyable. This one must have spoken to her poetic heart. Maybe it was always there or maybe it was grown and nurtured from our years of poetry tea. Who knows, but it’s there.

-ali

P.S. Poem #1 is here for you. The dog’s name is Do-Good so that is the name/word you are reading. She wants to revamp it and “publish” it on Friday. “Mom, can I use nice paper and cursive and pen?” Um….YES!

Dogood

When I go outside and call, Dogood comes.

I tell him to sit, and when he has sat, his green mirror-like eyes look at me, waiting.

Waiting for me to stroke his drooping leaf-like ears, making him happy by stroking his U-shaped snout,

and stroking his smooth, hair-like fur.

He lifts his padded bump-like foot, waiting for me to shake hands with him.

He is a nice, calm black dog.

Playing with Poetry Workshop

“Seeing a spark”

Wednesday, November 25th, 2015

Silly Poem by Erik, Brave Writer student

Dear Julie

My boys were making up silly poems last night when I was putting them to bed so I told them they should write down all their ideas. So today, among many short poems, my son Erik wrote this and then rolled on the floor laughing:

my speling is grate!
‘ain’t gott a misteak!
‘do’nt kare wut u sai,
‘cause me spelin ees great!

I thought you might enjoy that. As silly as that is I do really love seeing a spark in my boys that I haven’t seen in a while. I’m in high demand as an editor now as one boy writes historical fiction set during the French and Indian War and the other writes about a horse that wants to learn to fly from a wise eagle named Dr. Smart.

Your ideas are revolutionizing our homeschool. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Christa

What a high level of linguistic skill is apparent in this adorable poem! He’s nailing it! This is what leads to powerful writing as he gets older—such facility! Love it! –julie

Brave Writer Poetry Guide