Evening Poetry, May 14

Here is a poem from a classic children’s poetry collection. If you have young children at home, please read poetry to them! Let their young ears become accustomed to the rhythm, cadence, and pure joy that can be found in poetry. One simple way to introduce them to poetry is during dinner: often while my kids were eating, I would read them a poem or two. Nursery rhymes count, as do Dr. Seuss and Jack Prelutsky! I am certain there is poetry out there for every person, old or young.

Hold Fast Your Dreams

by Louise Driscoll

Hold fast your dreams!

Within your heart

Keep one still, secret spot

Where dreams may go,

And sheltered so,

May thrive and grow–

Where doubt and fear are not.

Oh, keep a place apart

Within your heart,

For little dreams to go.

You can find this poem in the collection Favorite Poems Old and New selected by Helen Ferris.

Evening Poetry, May 13

Seeing You

by David Whyte

I want you

to see

yourself

the way

I sometimes

see you.

I want you

to see

yourself

with the

self-same

eyes

that have me

shy

of telling you

what I see.

I want you

to come across

your self

and see

yourself,

the way I did

that first

morning,

as a beautiful

incredibly

kind

and inviting

stranger.

I want you

to knock

gently on

your

own door

and stand

there

astonished

as I do

unable

to speak

to the one

who has come

out to meet you.

Like Rilke’s

visiting

angel

of the

Annunciation

who forgot

his message

to Mary,

and could only

fall back

to singing

her praises,

stuttering and

everwhelmed

as he was,

by the untroubled

beauty

of her soul.

You can find this poem in the collection The Bell and The Blackbird by David Whyte.

Evening Poetry, May 12

My Mother is Mine

by Marion Dane Bauer

My mother is soft.

My mother is strong.

My mother watches me long and long.

My mother sings high.

My mother sings sweet.

My mother can dance

on both of her feet.

My mother feeds me.

She holds me tight.

She never forgets

to kiss me goodnight.

My mother is tall and tall and tall.

But she doesn’t mind

that I am small.

My mother is pretty.

My mother is brave.

My mother still loves me

when I misbehave.

My mother is special.

My mother is fine.

My mother,

My mother,

My mother is mine.

My Mother is Mine was a favorite book of my daughter’s when she was small. Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers, step-mothers, mother figures, and nurturing, mothering people in our world!

Evening Poetry, May 11

This poem can be found in the March 2019 edition of Poetry Magazine.

Maybe my most important identity is being a son

by Raymond Antrobus

my mother

asking how

to open a tab

on her laptop,

to email a photo,

calling to ask–

can you change

the lightbulb

at the top of the stairs?

my mother

spending hours

helping me find

a doctor’s form,

a hearing aid battery,

anything

misplaced, my mother

who keeps leaving

her keys in the doors

or on the walls,

who keeps saying

I might have to change

the locks, mother

of self-sufficiency,

of beads and trolleys,

of handlebars,

short-tempered

spiteful mother,

mother of resistance,

licorice and seaweed

on the table,

lonely mother,

mother needs-no-man,

mother deserves my cooking,

deserves a long sleep,

a cuppa tea, a garden

of lavender mothers,

all her heads up,

mother’s tooth

falls out, mother

dyes her hair,

don’t say graying

say sea salt

and cream, remedy,

immortal mother.

You can find the poetry of Raymond Antrobus in the collection To Sweeten Bitter.

Evening Poetry, May 10

Homage (for Mary Oliver)

by David Whyte

So simple

so clear,

so here.

Like a cat

pawing

the air

or the whip

crack

sound

of a dog

snapping

at a fly.

Always

toward

the end,

the way

we are never

quite

prepared

to find

the beautiful

sense

of hidden

pleasurable

and complete

surprise

in the poem

until

reading

the

very

last line,

but which

is

the one

you

remember

and

that stays

with you

day after day

when you do.

You can find this poem and more in David Whyte’s collection The Bell and the Blackbird.

Nocturnal (Book Review)

This is a very short review of a new poetry collection by Wilder Poetry.

Nocturnal was the first poetry collection from Wilder Poetry that I’ve ever had the pleasure to read. It is an achingly beautiful work of art. The emotional intensity of the poems are juxtaposed with calming black and white watercolor-type imagery of the moon in its phases, birds, trees, and other nature-related things.

The poetic themes seem to be centered around the poet’s identity and the euphoria, misery and pain of love in its highs and lows. Her voice sounds quite youthful and should appeal to readers in their teens and twenties. Readers of the poetry of Atticus should enjoy this collection very much! Grandparents, this would be a great gift for a teen or twenty something book-loving grandchild.

Here are a couple of poems:

how to handle me with care:

forgive;

then show me how

to do the same.

I will hold the colour gold

in my hands and show you

how beautiful this life can be

even when your eyes have forgotten

how to see the light.

the sun will always find its way back to you,

just like me.

I received a free e-galley through Net Galley, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Evening Poetry, May 8

My Mother

by Jane Kenyon

My mother comes back from a trip downtown to the dime

store. She has brought me a surprise. It is still in her purse.

She is wearing her red shoes with straps across the in-

step. They fasten with small white buttons, like the eyes

of fish.

She brings back zippers and spools of thread, yellow and

green, for her work, which always takes her far away, even

though she works upstairs, in the room next to mine.

She is wearing her blue plaid full-skirted dress with the

large collar, her hair fastened up off her neck. She looks

pretty. She always dresses up when she goes downtown.

Now she opens her straw purse, which looks like a small

suitcase. She hands me a new toy: a wooden paddle with

a red rubber ball attached to it by an elastic string. Some-

times when she goes downtown, I think she will not come back.

You can find this poem and more in Otherwise: New & Selected Poems by Jane Kenyon.