Morning Promise

May 4, 2018

Tags: Morning Promise, Poetry Friday


I had to go buy a new computer yesterday (Coffee! Keyboard!), so I put blinders on and ignored my notebook all day even though I could hear it calling me. But before I went to sleep, I read some poems from Naomi Shihab Nye's Voices in the Air: Poems for Listeners, and a quote in her poem "Tomorrow" stuck with me: "All that is truly ours now is the day that is beginning." This morning, I woke up and started writing before I got out of bed.

The good thing about today is that
it gives me another chance
          to laugh
          to leap
          to sing
          to play
          to work
          to pray
          to dance.
I make this promise to myself
each day that Iím lucky to live:
Iíll take the opportunity
          to help
          to hope
          to fight
          for right
          to lift
          to love
          to give.
Happy Poetry Friday! Brenda has today's Roundup at Friendly Fairy Tales. Enjoy!

Day 30: Migration Day & the Last 2018 National Poetry Month Book Giveaway!

April 30, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, Spring, Migration

Today is the day that spring flies north.
Thatís what the forecasters say.
I think I will lie right down in the grass
and watch the sky all day.

Our feeders are filled. Weíve put oranges out
for the favorites we see every year.
Orioles, grosbeaks, indigo buntings,
and warblers are on their way here!

Hummingbirds, tanagers, kinglets and wrensó
Iíve got nothing better to do
than to lie outside in the grass and watch.
Come out and join me, wonít you?
Poetry has sustained me through this wintry National Poetry Month, but Iím always happy to welcome May with its migrating birds and bursting blooms. This yearís poem-a-day exercise has taught me good lessons about my voice and writing habits. Iím really glad I was able to stick to my plan and write something new every day. I hope to continue that practice, although I donít expect to post every day.

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. Today is the last giveaway of the month! The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. Good luck!

Day 29: Haiku on Haiku & a Book Giveaway!

April 29, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, haiku


Yesterday, we walked around a lagoon in the park, and I posted a silly haiku about my photography skills. (Yes, that's my thumb again in the photo above.) What I wanted to say was something about the flashes of red in the not-yet-spring landscape. Alas, it still eludes me. Here's what came out instead:
too much to say
in three short lines
make it a tanka

making words fit
I lose the logic
try another draft

haiku on haiku
no nature in these lines
look out the window

which matters more
the form or the meaning
neither
          both
                    let go
I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please try again. I'll have 31 copies to share!

Day 28: Taking Pictures & a Book Giveaway!

April 28, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, photos, taking pictures


birds, flowers, landscapes
all my photos look alike
thumb in a corner

We went to the park this morning to walk around the lagoon and see what was migrating through. I sat on a bench, waiting for the local geese to swim closer so I could count the goslings. They climbed the bank and waddled almost to my feet, pecking in the grass. I deleted the worst of the photos before I realized that my photography skills could be the topic of today's haiku. (In my defense, I was wearing mittens. In April-almost-May!)

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please try again. I'll have 31 copies to share!

Day 27: Birthday Star, Poetry Friday, & a Book Giveaway!

April 27, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, star

I got a star for my birthday.
My grandparents bought it online.
It came with complete care instructions.
I think we will get along fine.

Its name is all letters and numbers
of the most scientific sort.
I thought my star might like a nickname,
so I call it Seven for short.

Whenever Iím out in the evening,
I look for my star in the sky.
I donít know if Iíll ever find it,
but itís surely worth a good try.

Sometimes, late at night, I imagine
my starís up there thinking of me.
I wonder, from up in the atmosphere,
What on Earth can it see?

I got a star for my birthday
with all the proof Iíll ever need
on this official print-it-yourself
frameable title and deed!
I'm sorry to say that according to NASA, it's not actually possible to buy a star and name it. Phooey!

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please try again. I'll have 31 copies to share!

Irene has today's Poetry Friday Roundup at Live Your Poem. Enjoy!

Day 26: Poem in Your Pocket Day & a Book Giveaway!

April 26, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, Poem in Your Pocket Day, Dreams, Langston Hughes

I have something in my pocket.
Itís a poem I can say.
I know all the lines by heart.
I like to read it anyway.

Do you have a poem to show me?
We can share our poems. Okay?
You read mine, and Iíll read yours
on Poem in Your Pocket Day!
I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please try again. I'll have 31 copies to share!

Day 25: Brainstorming Silly Limericks & a Book Giveaway!

April 25, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, limericks, brainstorming, silly poems


I had so much fun yesterday with my dog-training limerick that I decided to work on getting sillier today. In that early-morning daze thatís my most creative writing time, I thought about other animals and more goofy stunts:
Iím teaching my camel to wink.
Itís trickier than you might think.
She is painfully shyó
wonít look me in the eyeó
but sooner or later, sheíll blink.

Iím teaching my penguin to sing.
He keeps hiding his head in his wing.
He hasnít sung yet.
When he does, you can bet
it will be a remarkable thing.

Iím teaching my zebra to sneeze.
Heís very determined to please.
He is such a good sport
that heíll shiver and snort,
and heíll sputter and sniffle and wheeze.

Iím teaching my turtle to fly,
and here is the main reason why:
Itís not easily done,
but I think sheíd have fun,
so I wish she would give it a try.
Why donít you give it a try? An animal with a two-syllable name and the stress on the first syllable fits into the rhythm well. Here are some more options:
ē muskrat
ē eagle
ē wombat
ē walrus
ē beaver
ē groundhog
ē peacock
ē lizard
ē bison
Remember that lines 1, 2, and 5 have three beats and rhyme, and lines 3 and 4 have two beats and rhyme. Maybe you can come up with a silly animal trick to teach, too!

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please try again. I'll have 31 copies to share!

Day 24: Dog Tricks & a Book Giveaway!

April 24, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, dog tricks

Iím teaching my dog to do tricks.
She was born knowing how to fetch sticks.
She learned how to shake
when she jumped in the lake,
so we just have some details to fix.

ďRoll over,Ē I say. She holds still.
Sooner or later, she will
follow my lead
to get up to speed,
but Iím dizzy from rolling downhill.

She knows what Iím saying, itís clear.
She sits when I tell her, ďCome here.Ē
When I tell her to stay,
she runs right away,
but weíve only been training a year.

So far this month, Iíve written a new poem each morning and posted it that day. Iím not always completely satisfied with the results. This one needs more attention, but Iím out of time for today, so Iíll have to get back to it later.

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please check back again. I'll have 31 copies to share!


Day 23: Insomnia & a Book Giveaway!

April 23, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, insomnia

For hours, Iíve been tossing and turning,
trying to sleep for so long.
I followed my usual bedtime routine.
I donít know what went wrong.

I wrestled a bit with my brother,
found some Halloween candy to eat.
checked my status online to see if anyone
noticed my latest Tweet.

I watched a new horror movie,
poured a big glass of water to drink,
and played all my favorite video games,
but I still havenít slept a wink!

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please check back again. I'll have 31 copies to share!

Day 22: Earth Day & a Book Giveaway!

April 22, 2018

Tags: Book Giveaway, National Poetry Month, Write a Poem Step by Step, Earth Day

Welcome to Earth Day!
Hello to spring,
to tulips and daffodils,
robins a-wing,
to earthworms below us,
to buds on the trees,
to migrating monarchs,
and all kinds of bees.

On Earth Day and every day,
we must take care
of prairies and forests
and all who live there.
From rivers and oceans
to mountains above,
Earth is our planet.
Letís treat it with love.

I'm giving away a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step every day in April. The book is based on my school visit presentations and includes a simple plan you can follow to create your own poems. I wrote it for students, teachers, and writers of all ages.

Post a comment here to enter. I'll choose one at random tomorrow and drop a copy of Write a Poem Step by Step in the mailóU.S. addresses only, please. Iíll email you for your mailing address if you win. And if you don't win right away, please check back again. I'll have 31 copies to share!