Thursday, August 30, 2018

Poetry Friday - Back to School

          Robyn Hood Black at Life on The Deckle Edge hosts our Poetry Friday today. She's "weaving" together our PF links starting with her spider poem that has appeared in the Highlights Hello and a fun picture of someone's sweet child reading it. Also, Robyn has another celebration by sharing bit more from Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong's newest publication, GREAT MORNING! Poems for School Leaders to Read Aloud. Thanks for hosting, Robyn and for the wonderful poetry sharing!




        I spent yesterday after school, helping Ingrid finish a school getting-to-know-you project. Usually, she spends Friday with me and those afternoons are relaxing, finding fun at the end of the week. This time, because she's off to the mountains this weekend, she came on Wednesday and had homework, a BIG assignment due Thursday before the holiday weekend. As she worked and as I answered a few questions, I wondered how the days were going, already busy with school and the stress, but fun, of learning - new subjects, new teacher, new classmates. In between assignment talk, we did remember summer, too, and I had time to write this, for Ingrid and Imogene, for Carter in his senior year, for all those back to school. It's for teachers, too, but they probably have their own to-do list.



School Starting - The Other To-Do List

Take a little time to understand
the teacher's voice
while giving directions.
When you hear Take out your purple folder,
keep still, but imagine
the run into the ocean,
taking out the boogie board,
pushing through the waves,
out, out, out
to turn and wait for the biggest one,
riding
          all 
               the
                    way
                          in.

If you need to clear your brain
when you hear line up the tens, hundreds, 
and thousands,
remember lining up to climb that rock wall,
fingers finding the edges to hold on
while legs stretch to grab the next step.

While listening to a read-aloud before lunch,
venture back to the garden sounds,
munching a ripe tomato,
crunching a yellow pepper,
slurping from the garden hose,
and splashing your face,
letting the drips cool,
loving summer.

Find some minutes to smile
at your classmates as you
take one final leap back
to porch-sitting till dark,
sunshine-worn
then off to sleep with a window breeze
and another good day gone.

Linda Baie © All Rights Reserved

           Enjoy your Labor Day weekend everyone. I hope that means you will have some extra time for fun and poetry!

39 comments:

  1. Linda, this poem is so very alive and sparkling - I will pass along to Morgan and her third-graders! Wishing your amazing Ingrid and Imogene wonderful new school years, and Carter, too - a big year! - and all those starting school. Your sensitive send-off is perfect. (Love the boogie board image!)

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    1. Thanks, Robyn. Those wondering thoughts must be there, right? Hope that Morgan has had a great start to her year!

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  2. Dear Linda, I love the pic of Ingrid working on her project. :) And your poem! Unexpected and vivid. Thank you! xo

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    1. You're welcome, Irene. The poem not only comes from thoughts of Ingrid that day, but from years of starting school knowing that students' minds were on other things besides what we were doing, namely summer!

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  3. Linda, what a perfect way to begin a school year--by keeping memories of the summer!

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    1. Thanks, Jane, I imagine that most everyone does this, especially kids.

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  4. Required reading! What beautiful imagery is formed from your vivid words - absolutely LOVE this!

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    1. Thanks, it is what we all do, right?

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  5. Oh Linda, such weaving of all that is richly seen and felt in summer with the newness of school's first days. Hold on to what we love, but be open to possibility. How lucky Ingrid and Imogene,and Carter to have a Grand like you....and you, too, to get to hold them close so regularly. Passing on life's bounty in the mosaic that is the poem. A delight and provacative. Our kids have lives we teachers do not know.

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    1. I love your final sentence, Janet, so, so true. Thanks!

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  6. This reminds me so of my "kiss summer goodbye" paragraph we used to do each year. It gave me such insight into their lives and the loves they left behind each year when school started.
    Love these lines:
    "...take one final leap back
    to porch-sitting till dark,
    sunshine-worn
    then off to sleep with a window breeze
    and another good day gone."
    What lucky grands to have this poem-gift from you!

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    1. Yes, "kissing summer goodbye" feels right, Ramona. Thanks for coming by & sharing that with me. I am lucky to have the grands, too!

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  7. What a beautiful and perfect back to school poem.

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    1. Thanks, Kimberly. As a teacher, I often imagined what the students were thinking, especially those first days.

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  8. What an inspiring and inviting poem Linda, I really like the verse with all the garden veggies and "splashing your face," you've brought me right there–beautiful. Fun pic of Ingrid too! Wishing all a wonderful start to the new school year and fall, thanks!

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    1. Thank you, Michelle, summer is something precious for children, and I wanted to share that feeling.

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  9. oh, my goodness...what a loving poem to your grand children. I love the collaboration of memory and new learning. It's exactly what we wish for kids....background knowledge and positive emotion tied to new ideas. This is a brilliant capture of that and so special for your people. Well done, Linda. I hope you will submit this to any new school anthology that happens along. It belongs there.

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    1. Thanks, Linda, yes, bringing in "all" that they are is a wish, I agree.

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  10. Beautiful--I love the intermingling of past and present. The past is never truly gone when we remember, and those memories can infuse the present as well. Hope the school year is off to a wonderful start for your granddaughters.

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    1. Thanks Kay, I enjoyed writing this, capturing the mood of the first days very much.

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  11. I want to thank you for sharing the photos of the girls on FB. They are quite an adventurous, tree-climbing duo and I love that you are accepting of, and encourage their courageousness. Your poem is further proof of your support.

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    1. I feel very lucky to have the girls so near & to get to spend lots of time with them, Diane. Arvie & I had Carter till fifth grade & loved having him near then, too. I support their courage because my own grandparents supported me, too. Thank you!

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  12. Ahhh, so lovely. I love how your experiences with your granddaughters find their way into the poem, so it's about the words and the memories, too. What treasures for these girls to have!

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  13. I also love your "other to-do list" concept, and it's on my own list of ideas to try. (You wrote another one a bit ago, and that's when this got added to my list.)

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    1. Yes, I did write another, Ruth, & I like the idea, too. How wonderful that you like the theme. I do love being with the girls & watching them grow up! Thank you!

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  14. Linda, it is wonderful how wove this poem together with a timeless to-do list. You set the stage for reflection that allows us to linger in the moments of summer when it has passed on by. The grandgirls are fortunate to have you living so close to thm.

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    1. Thanks, Carol, it was a pleasure to write.

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  15. You've captured the bitter-sweet essence of going back to school, Linda: the excitement of the new school year, and the reverent remembrance of the summer days. Happy 'New' Year to all students and teachers. =)

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    1. Thanks, Bridget, although I wrote about students, I think everyone thinks this way, parents & teachers, too.

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  16. Good suggestions. I try to remember similar comparisons myself, once spring fades. Remember the first bloom of early spring? Remember the heavy rain that made the grass turn green overnight? Remember when the tulip magnolia bloomed, like daylight stars? Ahhh, great poem, Linda.

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    1. Yes, it's part of how we live, I'm sure. Thanks, Brenda!

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  17. I love how Robyn described your poem, "alive and sparkling." It truly is, Linda! I hope you are collecting these poems you write, inspired by your grandchildren, in notebooks. I'm thinking of this one, and the one about learning cursive, and... oh, I'm sure there are many MANY others. The notebooks will make such special gifts one day when they are a bit older.

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    1. No, I haven't, except I created a book with the 'goodbye' poems which holds a lot of poems about the grands. You're right, I should begin collecting. Thanks, Michelle.

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  18. One of my favorite poems of yours, Linda! Those delicious, warm-hearted descriptions and wonderful ending.

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    1. Thanks, Tabatha. It was a dear one to write.

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  19. Ahhh - back to school to dos. Beautiful. I love to see your granddaughters' pictures and updates Linda. Enjoy.

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    1. Thank you very much for stopping by, Vicki. It is fun to see yours also. We share a lot of joys!

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  20. Linda, what a beautiful reminder that being in the present moment is great, but sometimes being in a past moment is even better. Lovely!

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    1. Thanks, Laura. I'm glad you enjoyed my poem.

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