Saturday, April 13, 2013

Common Inspiration--Uncommon Creations.13

Flickr Creative Commons photo by Frank Douwes on Wikimedia Commons


I will be spending the day at The Literacy Connection's culminating event in the year-long Back to Books! series -- a day with Donalyn Miller, author of The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child and the upcoming (Nov. 2013) Reading in the Wild: The Book Whisperer's Keys to Cultivating Lifelong Reading Habits

I poked around Wikimedia Commons for pictures of children reading, and I almost went with a 1900's picture of 30+ children, seated in rows, probably reading primers. It would have matched the historic picture of the woman fly fisher from last Saturday. But it didn't make me wonder and imagine like this girl in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania did. I'll hold her in my mind all day while we learn from Donalyn and each other about best practices in the teaching of reading, and I'll post my poem later in the day, or tonight.

Linda (TeacherDance) was the first to leave a poem today:

It’s market day.
I needed to find
a treasure to sell,
a piece of metal,
a toy to mend.
Instead I found
my own kind of gold,
and sat down
right then
to look.

©Linda Baie, 2013


Kevin (Kevin's Meandering Mind) left this:

His fingers trace the fragile bones
of words;
an archeologist of meaning deepened
by pictures,
his mind now humming with the voice
of writers,
from some faraway place he may never visit
but once,
here in the stories unfolding inside
this book.

©Kevin Hodgson, 2013


After a day filled with books and book-talk, I couldn't think of anything more appropriate than a book spine poem! Which version do you like better?


That Little Something

Stories that could be true,
mirror of the heart:
a gift of days


A Gift of Days

That little something. 
Stories that could be true:
mirror of the heart.



The theme of my 2013 National Poetry Month Project is 


"Common Inspiration--Uncommon Creations." 


Each day in April, I will feature media from the Wikimedia Commons ("a database of 16,565,065 freely usable media files to which anyone can contribute") along with bits and pieces of my brainstorming and both unfinished and finished poems.

I will be using the media to inspire my poetry, but I am going to invite my students to use my daily media picks to inspire any original creation: poems, stories, comics, music, videos, sculptures, drawings...anything!

You are invited to join the fun, too! Leave a link to your creation in the comments and I'll add it to that day's post. I'll add pictures of my students' work throughout the month as well.

8 comments:

  1. A former student has started a school in Kenya for girls, and has told me that many of the youngest students' "work" was combing the trash dumps for anything to sell at market. Here is my response to your picture:


    It’s market day.
    I needed to find
    a treasure to sell,
    a piece of metal,
    a toy to mend.
    Instead I found
    my own kind of gold,
    and sat down
    right then
    to look.

    Looking forward to hearing about your day-sounds wonderful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Linda, This certainly brings the meaning of literacy to a whole new level. Love the specifics of "piece of metal" and "toy to mend."

      Delete
  2. His fingers trace the fragile bones
    of words;
    an archeologist of meaning deepened
    by pictures,
    his mind now humming with the voice
    of writers,
    from some faraway place he may never visit
    but once,
    here in the stories unfolding inside
    this book.

    -Kevin

    PS -- Lucky you, getting to hang with Donalyn.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kevin, Love the idea of the reader as archaeologist tracing the fragile bones of words. A gorgeous metaphor.

      Delete
  3. This is very very moving, Linda. Thank you for the picture prompt, Mary Lee.
    When I was a poetry teacher in residence in a private school in California in 2010, I met Mama Lynn from Light in Africa. I was beyond moved by her, her story and her work. One of the administrators of Harbor Day School (near Laguna Beach) had been at the Light in Africa community near Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, so I knew it was all true and worthy. You might want to read about Mama Lynn's charity work. She is an amazing woman who has followed her strong faith to help feed, educate and care for the children and people in that region. I think of helping her as one child at a time. When you have so little, a book is gold and we don't sometimes appreciate all the riches we have. I will check back later.
    http://www.lightinafrica.org/blog/

    ReplyDelete
  4. This picture made me think about the kids I teach…

    "Treasure Chest?"

    Some people say
    books are treasures
    but those people
    rarely talk about
    how some children
    are filling
    their treasure chests
    with millions of words
    stories read and reread
    experiences real and vicarious
    worlds known and unknown

    while other children
    sit on concrete stoops
    in hand-me-down clothes
    and mismatched shoes
    believing that
    one tattered volume
    might somehow
    be considered
    a treasure chest.

    (c) Carol Wilcox, 2013

    ReplyDelete
  5. Messed around with the ending. It still doesn't feel right.

    "Treasure Chest?"

    Some people say
    books are treasures
    but those people
    rarely talk about
    how some children
    are filling
    their treasure chests
    with millions of words
    stories read and reread
    experiences real and vicarious
    worlds known and unknown

    while other children
    sit on concrete stoops
    in hand-me-down clothes
    and mismatched shoes
    not knowing that
    one tattered volume
    does not
    a treasure chest
    make.

    (c) Carol Wilcox, 2013

    ReplyDelete
  6. Mary Lee,
    Think I like the second version better. Something about the stories we construct being the mirrors of our heart. But I think they are both great. Your ability to be brilliant with only a few words never ceases to amaze me.
    CAW

    ReplyDelete

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