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Showing posts from 2018

Celebrating Everyday Matters

The Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda exalted the basic things of our daily existence. He celebrated the mundane in ways that were quite extraordinary. Through his poetry he discovered beauty in everyday  moments and objects, making them appear remarkable and worthy of sharing. Check out Pablo Neruda'sOde To My Socks.

I also recommend Valerie Worth's book, 'All the Small Poems And 14 More.'  Worth celebrates a range of everyday earthly wonders. Each poem a precise tribute to ordinary things. These poets have taught me to recognize the innate value of everyday objects and events.

When we sit quietly for a while, we begin to notice the beauty surrounding us. We develop a renewed appreciation for the seemingly invisible events that make up our lives. Young writers and poets need exposure to such potentially rewarding activities. Beauty exists in simple, everyday tasks and pleasures. We must show them how we engage in the celebration of the everyday, -how we smell the roses...


Poetry Friday- Billy Collins: Introduction To Poetry

I am keen to share this Billy Collins poem with you, dear readers. It so precisely sums up what a poet wishes a reader will do with the words they have created. The poem reveals the poet's desire to have the essence of the poem embraced. It speaks of his regret about what so often befalls a poem. In the hands of misguided meaning seekers poems are frequently torn apart; their beauty is lost. Once more, let us revel in the words Billy Collins provides. Let them gently seep into your consciousness. Let them reach your poet's heart.

Introduction To Poetry

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light 
like a colour slide
or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to water-ski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They …

The Poet's Paint Palette

Canadian Poet and educator, Carl Leggo wrote, 'writers write their worlds in words. With the resources of the alphabet we explore and express who we are in the world. The alphabet provides the building blocks for constructing knowledge of our identity.' Carl Leggo shared this idea for growing a deeper appreciation of poetry:

Carl Leggo reminds us that these 26 amazing letters hold infinite possibilities, infinite combinations. How magical is that? Sound, shape and power combine to create shades of meaning we can share with an audience of fellow readers and writers, the world over.  

*Write down the 26 letters of the alphabet
*Circle your five favourite letters
*Write five words that begin with your five favourite letters
*Use these words to reveal some poetry

There exists in these 5 listed words much in the way of music. Opportunities abound for alliteration and zany connections. There is an energy in the words as well. We can begin to look at the alphabet with renewed respect.The a…

What's In A Name? POEM

The idea for this poem comes from Susan Goldsmith Wooldridge's book, Poemcrazy. The aim of this poetry making challenge is to explore your lesser known names using poetry to discover what these names might be. Using a structure provided by Susan Goldsmith Wooldridge, a poem will hopefully emerge and you can discover some of your lesser known names:

My real name is
Yesterday my name was
Tomorrow my name will be
In my dreams my name is
Secretly I know my name is
My friend thinks my name is
The name I whisper is

Your names can be as silly or serious as you wish them to be. Trot out your names and see what emerges. Feel free to improvise on the structure as well. it's perfectly okay to break the rules here. Your names and moods might change with the seasons, or across the days and years.
Think about those names your friends and family call you. Inspiration might be found there.

When I thought about my many names, this is what happened for me:

What's In A Name?

My name was once Red Dog

What Happens to POETRY?

During that intriguing journey from kindergarten through to high school we lose so many of those fans of poetry, and the answer is simple. It happens because we move away from writing, reading and performing poetry and focus way too much on dissecting and analyzing it. We chop it up into pieces. It becomes reading by autopsy! No longer can hear the rhythm and rhyme. No longer do we rejoice in the wordplay.  We lose the pleasure that comes with performance. The quest is focused upon hidden meaning and obscure symbolism. We become obsessed in second guessing the poet's motives.

Poetry in such an environment becomes dull and tarnished. The fans begin to wander away…

We have lost sight of the fact that we learn to write by reading, listening thinking and writing –and by writing we arrive at understanding.'

I learnt from American poet, Ted Kooser - 'You have to read at least one hundred poems before you write one.' I interpreted this as meaning I had to immerse myself in poetr…

The Old Jalopy POEM

Ideas exist in things, so the saying goes. This poem owes it's beginnings to a recent sighting of vintage cars driving in a parade through my town. As I stood watching these well preserved senior citizens of the road, my thoughts returned to our first family car all those years ago. We had an Austin A 40 and it was a rather cantankerous machine. It could be relied upon to shake and rattle when asked to travel at any speed above 'slow.' It required constant care and attention and sometimes without warning it would begin a convulsive lurch when out on the highway. 

 So, before I even finished watching the car parade, ideas began forming in my head. The word 'jalopy' floated forward and I found myself immediately in the poem zone. Sometimes a single word is all you need to get ideas flowing. Let me share what I built...

The Old Jalopy
Dad looks stressed Mum looks stroppy We're going for a drive In our old jalopy Kids pile in Dogs in tow Shut the doors And we're set to g…

Summer Comes Rushing Poem: Poetry Friday

Had a conversation with a child once who informed me there were four seasons.
Please tell their names I asked. 'Okay' she said. 'Summer, Awesome, Winter, Spring.'

She was closer to the truth than she realised, for  the seasons are quite awesome, each in their own way, having fascinated poets, forever.

It is Summer in Australia right now and this poem is my ode to the warm season. Although, there is a touch of irony about me writing this with the sound of steady rain outside my study window this morning as I write...

Summer Comes Rushing

Summer comes rushing towards me
Wearing sneakers and sunglasses,
While smelling of sunscreen and salt water.
It dances on the shoreline
barefoot, joyful
While licking an ice-cream
And humming, The Boys of Summer.
It carries under its arm
Sunsets the colour of ripened
Cicadas sing as it glides by
And the saphirine sea

Shimmer time
Summer shine

Alan j Wright

Some of my summer scenes

Poetry Friday- The Manifesto of Alvin j Riot

I invited my alter-ego, Alvin j Riot to share his view of the world and what he most valued, as we embark upon a brand new year. It's amazing how similar his view of worldly matters is to mine...

The Manifesto of Alvin j Riot

Be prepared to explore the outer limits of your own potential
Discard your socks if your toe pokes through
Always wear comfortable underwear
Go fishing just to be alone with your thoughts
-If you catch a fish consider it an added bonus
Chip away at your ignorance -read
If the sign says fast food think about it slowly
Never meditate in the middle of the road
Embrace simple pleasures
Take time to listen to music every day
Stop feeling guilty if your favourite ice cream flavor is vanilla
Hold hands
Wherever you are- be there!
Try to find a job that brings you satisfaction
Make certain the person you marry is your best friend
Avoid conservatives. They are the beige people.
Don’t throw bricks straight up
Sleep in a comfortable bed
Appreciate your pillow
Sand between your toes is okay.…