Thursday, November 24, 2016

Poems Comfort

             This final Poetry Friday of November is hosted by Carol Wilcox at Carol's Corner, not far from where I live! Thanks, Carol!

        I hope those of you who celebrated Thanksgiving found many ways to be thankful, most of all for family and friends, but at least second best is pie.

        My granddaughter, Ingrid, seven and a second grader, spent the early part of the week with me, including Monday night. Her school takes this week for a fall break. At bedtime, we looked for a few books that seemed good for our search for things to be grateful for, things to celebrate. One favorite I wanted to share with Ingrid is Joyce Sidman's What The Heart Knows: Chants,Charms & Blessings, published in 2013. I knew Ingrid was now old enough to appreciate the thoughtfulness of some of Joyce's poems, and while I skipped past some, we read others that meant good conversations about kindness and happiness and being brave. Afterward, I read the others and was renewed again by Joyce's wonderful words. Here are a few lines with the poem titles I hope will count as a "Chant, Charm or Blessing" for you.

       Starting Now

begins:
It is time for us to wake:
we who stumble through the day
with our gripes and complaints,


and
It is time for us to look into
each other's faces,

ends: 
Join hands.
Right here.
Our moment:
starting now.

          
           I find Peace

begins:
I find peace in the lazy doze of Saturdays
and in the beat of a pounding run.

ends:
I find peace when I set greed aside.
I find peace when I have spoken my last word.
I find peace when I am ready to listen.

           Song of Bravery

                        Ingrid has done more than one brave thing in her young life, most lately starting a new school but on the second, not the first, day. But, she did it. She's had lots of talk with her mom about being brave, and enjoyed this poem a lot!

the ending:
        But here I go --
        bones clicking quietly together,
        blood flowing dutifully 
        from heart to hands and back again--
        here I go, stepping out
        through the door
        of my own shadow:
        into the glare of the arena
        to face the lions.

            The book is filled with topics for everyone. This time,

             Sleep Charm

ending:
          and the creatures of the night
          will sing your name.

       If you haven't read and also enjoyed the playful, but serious, creature imagined and drawn by Pamela Zagarenski who takes the reader on the journey of Joyce's words, please find and savor this book. It also makes a wonderful gift!

38 comments:

  1. I've enjoyed seeing pics of Ingrid on FB. From what I've seen, she seems to be a mighty girl who embraces new experiences. I'm glad you and she are reading and discussing such interesting books.

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    1. It is a delight to share with her and this book by Sidman invited new ideas. I hadn't re-read it in a while, so was fun for me, too. She is very curious. Thanks, Diane.

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  2. Clearly, I need to take this volume off the shelf and revisit it! Thanks for the chants, charms and blessings! Blessings on you, too!

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    1. Thanks, Mary Lee. It was a wonderful re-read, especially at this time.

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  3. Sounds like a great book to revisit. We all need good chants, charms and blessings. Hope you have a great weekend!

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    1. Thanks, Brenda. I hope you find and enjoy it!

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  4. I had forgotten about this book! Like Mary Lee, I need to take it off my shelf and read it again. So important right now!

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    1. It is a favorite, glad you can read right now, Carol! Thanks!

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  5. If there is a perfect poetry book for these days, this must be it. Thank you for the reminder, Linda!

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    1. It was a pleasure re-reading, Jane. Thanks!

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  6. I have not read this book, but Joyce Sidman always amazes me. I'll add this one to my list for sure! I love the bits and pieces you shared. Hope your Thanksgiving was filled with all things wonderful.

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    1. Thanks, Molly, it was a wonderful day! I hope you enjoy this lovely book by Joyce Sidman. It is a treasure to me!

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  7. Thank you for sharing these - this book is new to me, but I feel like there's no better time for thoughtful, beautiful poetry like this. As you say, poetry can bring comfort, as well as inspiration and motivation!

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    1. Thanks, Jane. I hope that you can find this book and love it as I do!

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  8. I love this book, too! Well done to Ingrid for facing those new school lions. She's a brave young lady, that one. Brave, smart, creative... you must be so proud.

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    1. Thanks, Michelle. I am proud, and it was a scary thing for her. She loves her new school, and that makes that first day so much better! Glad you love the book. It's very special, I think.

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  9. I'll have to find this book--it's new to me too. Of the lines you shared, I especially liked these:
    here I go, stepping out
    through the door
    of my own shadow:
    into the glare of the arena
    to face the lions.

    Thanks, Linda!

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    1. I had the pleasure of choosing favorite lines, so you must know these touched me, too, Carmela. I'm glad to share this book with you. Enjoy!

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  10. While I have used it more than once this year with my fifth graders, I had not seen it in the light of late November. It's charms and chants have great healing powers.

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    1. So glad to hear that you're sharing some of this book with your class. Thanks for telling me, Julieanne.

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  11. This book is a marvel. Joyce's poems are the perfect combination of wisdom, comfort, and humor. Thank you for sharing them, Linda!

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    1. Happy you enjoy it, Catherine. I agree, a marvel!

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  12. Oh Linda, I enjoy your posts so much. A granddaughter sounds like a special joy. I have not read these poems...chants but I feel like I need to. Thank you. Have a great week.

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    1. Thanks, Linda, hope you find and enjoy the book!

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  13. Thank you for reminding me! I gave this Joyce Sidman book away & have intended to
    restock my own close-at-hand shelf with it.
    You and your grand d. are a charm to us.
    hugs!

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    1. Thank you, Jan. Hope you add it back, soon!

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  14. As Catherine says, this book is a marvel! (And perfect to share, as Jan did, -and as you have done for us here!)
    Wishing Ingrid and you all the blessings it holds and then some.

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    1. Thank you, Robyn. I will hold those wishes close.I've loved the book since it was published, and it was much fun to share with Ingrid.

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  15. This is a wonderful book to pull out at this time of year. I have a copy and plan to find it when I return to school. Thanks for the reminder.

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    1. I imagine you'll share with your students now. Hope they love some of the pieces, Margaret. Thank you!

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  16. I have a stack of Joyce Sidman books waiting to be returned to the library. This is one of them. I have so enjoyed her books--all slightly different but much wisdom, attentiveness to life, not to speak of impeccable craft in her work. What I especially like about the Charms and Blessings book is the variety of ages that could read it (some poems seemed appropriate for littles, others more for tweens or even early teens). I also liked the binding-attached ribbon bookmark (the copy I read had it; don't know if they all do). It said to me - 'You'll find favorites to bookmark in this book.'

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    1. The book does have something for everyone which is wonderful, and why some fit Ingrid so well, and now as she grows older, she'll appreciate others. Yes, there is a ribbon in mine, too! What serendipity that you have it now from the library! Thanks, Violet.

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  17. Love picturing you with you 2nd grader, snuggled together and taking heart from Joyce Sidman's chants and charms. Lucky girl, lucky grandma, lucky world in little ways.

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    1. Thanks, Heidi. It's always a special time with the grandchildren, and this time, this book made it better.

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  18. Hi. :) What inspirational poetry here! Thanks for sharing this title with us! After looking at Instagram too, you have given me two new titles to research further. (God's Paintbrush at your book store caught my eye, especially after researching it.)

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  19. Oh this book is one of my Absolute Favourites! Thanks for sharing it! I Find Peace is especially beautiful.

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Having a conversation is a good thing!