Hello my poetic people. So glad you could join me again here at Poetry Time!
Here’s what’s been going on with me.
I had a great time visiting Florida again after a 20 month absence to perform and conduct workshops at Ridgeview Global Studies Academy in Davenport, FL and Windermere Prep in Windermere, FL. What dedicated teachers and students at both schools! Many thanks to McKelette Dowers, 1st grade teacher at Ridgeview, and Mary Beth Davies of Middle School Director at W.P. for bringing me to their schools and allowing me to soak up their awesomeness! Also, a HUGE thank you to my dear friends Josh and Mandy for allowing me to stay in their home, and for making homemade vegan meals during my stay. A few years ago Josh and Mandy helped me embrace a vegan lifestyle through their example and encouragement, and I'm thankful for their belief in me, and their friendship.
I performed and read for the Poets House at their weekly Tiny Poets gathering. The average age of the audience is 2 years old and I'm happy to write that I held their attention for a half hour, which is no easy feat, let me tell you. Thanks Suzanne Lunden, Children's Room Director & Educational Coordinator, for the opportunity.
I attended a performance of the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center's David Geffen Hall. Yefim Bronfman led the orchestra in a celebration of 19th century pianist Franz Liszt. I adore classical music, and this was so pleasing to my ears that I was sad when the perfomance was over for the evening.
To celebrate National Poetry Month in April, my poetic forever friend, Irene Latham, asked me to contribute to another progressive poem, and I happily accepted! Besides myself and Irene, there will be a big list of Poetry Friday bloggers who will contribute. Can't wait to see what the poem looks like at the end of April.
Also, on April 1st I will appear on the blog of award-winning writer Penny Parker Klostermann with a poem by me based on the drawings from my niece, Amani and my nephew, Dane. So looking forward to connecting creatively with my loved ones.
Laura Shovan has a going on in the month of February. I've decided to partcipate. A poem a day about a object that was photographed by one of the participants. My picture contibution was a small, but mighty fan that was of great use to me last summer and fall. At the end of the month, however, my poetic contribution was 29 poems about all ranges of objects. You can read them, and MANY more from the children's poetry community at Found Object Poem Project. Enjoy!
Since 1970, the Theatre on Film and Tape Archive (TOFT) has preserved live theatrical productions and documented the creative contributions of distinguished artists and legendary figures of the theatre. TOFT produces video recordings of Broadway, Off-Broadway, and regional theatre productions.
In order to improve as an actor, I use this resource to see shows from the past and learn. Recently, I have seen:
FENCES by August Wilson. (Denzel Washington, Viola Davis version from 2010)
IN THE HEIGHTS by Lin-Manuel Miranda and Quiara Alegria Hudes. (2008)
A DOLL’S HOUSE by Henrik Ibsen. (Janet McTeer version from 1997)
Read-a-Poem or R.A.P. My rallying cry to bring children’s poetry to every human being in the world continues rolling along. Not every book I mention has to be about children’s poetry but that’s the main thrust. I have read:
FLUTTER & HUM: Animal Poems, written and illustrated by Julie Paschkis
BIGFOOT IS MISSING by J. Patrick Lewis and Kenn Nesbitt. Illustrated by MinaLima.
AFTER THE SCHOOL BELL RINGS: Poems About After-School Time by Carol Diggory Shields. Illustrated by Paul Meisel.
NOW YOU SEE THEM, NOW YOU DON’T: Poems About Creatures That Hide by David L. Harrison. Illustrated by Giles Laroche.
EVERY DAY BIRDS by Amy Ludwig Vanderwater. Illustrated by Dylan Metrano.
THE KNOWING BOOK by Rebecca Kai Dotlich. Illustrated by Matthew Cordell.
P. ZONKA LAYS AN EGG by Julie Paschkis.
SURF’S UP by Kwame Alexander. Illustrated by Daniel Mirayes.
THE STRANDED WHALE BY Jane Yolen. Illustrated by Melanie Cataldo.
ALL THE BROKEN PIECES: A Novel in Verse by Ann E. Burg.
LIBRARY LION by Michelle Knudsen. Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes.
THE SECRET LIFE OF SQUIRRELS by Nancy Rose.
SKIT-SCAT RAGGEDY CAT: Ella Fitzgerald by Roxane Orgill. Illustrated by Sean Qualls.
THE ADVENTURES OF BEEKLE: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat.
EDWARD’S EYES by Patricia MacLachlan.
I leave you with two poems. Both have to do with three women named Laura, and one named Rebecca. Here's one from Laura Shovan's Found Object Poem Project, with a fictional Laura being name checked.
This walnut body of mine
gets hugged every night by Laura,
my heart beating, apple cheeked
forever friend. She fiddles with my
flowered dress, stitched up tan apron,
tattered handbag, homemade bonnet.
“I love you Dolly,” she says every night
before bed as shades of moon slice
through her alabaster curtains.
If only I had the heart to tell her,
“The feeling is mutual.”
© Charles Waters 2016 all rights reserved.
The second poem is from a writing exercise conducted by Laura Purdie Salas at her blog Writing the World with Kids, based on a poem by one of the best children's poets in America, Rebecca Kai Dotlich.
Dressed in yellow or in pink.
Grab some shade,
ice cubes –
© Charles Waters 2016 all rights reserved.