Today's Valentine's edition of Poetry Friday is hosted by Linda Bai at Teacher Dance. She is sharing some images of delightful vintage valentines. Don't forget to check out all the other bloggers posting today.
I haven't been posting much lately. I wish I could claim that it was because I have been writing, but other than the odd fits and starts of poems, I have been otherwise occupied. I managed to read some poetry off and on - but even that has been sketchy.
Here is what I've been up to in the last little while.
I finally got around to reading SoccerVerse by Elizbeth Steinglass. This book received many accolades. Every review I read praised it to the moon. After that kind of a set up I figured it just couldn't live up to that kind of adulation.
I was wrong.
There are so many reasons to love this book.
It's about soccer, but it's also about living and playing together in harmony with different kinds of people.
It acknowledges that soccer is a universal sport played by boys and girls.
It brilliantly showcases a variety of different poetic forms.
It provides ideal mentor texts for teaching poetry.
Edson Ike's illustrations are the perfect companion to these words.
Ultimately it's just a wonderful collection of poems that happen to be soccer related!
Here are a few of my favourite bits:
From Uniform Day,
Anything would have been better than green--
green like a wobbly, soggy old bean.
I don't want to look cooked. I want to look mean.
And those reverse poems - Instructions to Field Players & The Goalkeeper. Just Wow!
Another poem that wowed me was that last bit from The Handshake
I don't want to shake her hand,
but I do
because I don't want to be her.
I've finished reading and rereading 16 Words: William Carlos Williams & "The Red Wheelbarrow" by Lisa Rogers and Chuck Groenink.
It's the author's interpretation of what might have motivated Williams to write his famous poem. Along the way we readers learn a lot about the poet's life as a doctor and author. It's beautifully written and illustrated. I especially appreciate that they highlight Williams' ability to notice and write about ordinary things and ordinary people. His gift, through choosing words so carefully, is to make them seem extraordinary. I love the way the art brings it all together.
I'm also reading - bit by bit, When You Ask Me Where I'm Going by Jasmin Kaur, a local poet. This is intense adult verse. I read a bit, then leave it to sit for a while before returning to read another. I will do a full review when I am done.
Mrs Clause put a copy of The Best of Today's Little Ditty: 2017-2018 by Michelle Heidenrich Barnes in my stocking, and other than just browsing it, I haven't seriously gotten into it. I will soon!
My partner and I have been married 40+ years. Since It's Valentines Day, I'm sharing my all time favourite love poem by Amy Lowell. It is just right for us.
When you came, you were like red wine and honey,
And the taste of you burnt my mouth with its sweetness.
Now you are like morning bread,
Smooth and pleasant.
I hardly taste you at all for I know your savour,
But I am completely nourished.