(Wondering what Poetry Friday is? Click here.)
I’m reflecting on groups today.
First up, the Poetry Princesses, aka Poetry 7, aka Poetry Sisters. We are Liz Garton Scanlon, Tricia Stohr-Hunt, Andi Sibley, Tanita S. Davis, Kelly Fineman, Sara L. Holmes, and me. And we’ve been writing poems of a selected form each month and sharing them together every first Friday.
We’re a varied group–educators, librarians, and writers–all with a love of poetry. And that love has overcome, mostly, our insecurities. Whether it’s with Kelly’s vast knowledge, Liz’ always-encouraging nudges, Sara’s awesome science, Andi’s bravery, Tanita’s thoughtfulness about words, or Tricia’s shared resources, or everyone’s kindness, support, and phenomenal, laid-bare poetry, one or the other of them takes my breath away on just about a weekly basis.
Some months, we’ve shared and commented extensively during our writing process. Many months, we’ve come squealing in under the wire, tires melting, barely finishing in time to post publicly! And every month, one or more of us is mostly AWOL from discussion because of particularly heavy personal or professional demands. So the group has been…let’s say fluid and flexible!
And wonderful. This adventure started out as a birthday gift to Tricia, who wished we’d write more poetry together. And now we seven have conquered a year! And we’re looking at 2016 with a certain expectant gleam in our eyes:>)
We’re currently in the midst of a very ambitious collaborative poem right now that we’ll be sharing in January. But you can go here to read last month’s poems and find links to ALL of our previous collaborations!
Then there’s group 2, the amazing Children’s Literature Assembly–a fantastic group dedicated to helping children’s literature educators, supporting reading research, and spreading book love. CLA celebrated its 40th anniversary at NCTE in November (woohoo!).
And that led to a temporary group 3. For the CLA celebration, Mary Lee Hahn (happy birthday, Mary Lee!), Janet Wong, and I (all proud CLA board members and/or volunteers) collaborated on a poem. We used the symbolism of lights to honor just a few ways CLA has been and continues to be a light in the world of children’s literature and teacher education.
Here’s our poem–we got to read it out loud together, and a second time, with attendees joining in, at the CLA Reception at NCTE. What a lovely moment that was. Thank you, Janet and Mary Lee, and CLA for asking us to do this in the first place. Janet designed a lovely bookmark featuring our poem on one side, and that’s what I’m sharing with you to the right.
And thank you, my Poetry Sisters. Toasting all of our poetry moments this year!
Buffy Silverman has the Poetry Friday Roundup at Buffy’s Blog, where you’ll find many more poems to light your way! Her poem and story of recent travel will certainly brighten up your spirits:>)