April 4, 2016

Day #4 of the 2016 Kidlitosphere Progressive Poem, and, Ekphrastic Mondays #1


A two-fer for today! It's my day to contribute a line to the 2016 Kidlitosphere Progressive Poem, the NPM tradition begun by Irene Latham. The poem took off (pun intended) on Friday and here is its progression thus far (contributed by Laura Salas, Joy Acey, Doriane Bennett):
A squall of hawk wings stirs the sky
A hummingbird holds and then hies
If I could fly, I'd choose to be

What a set-up! How could I not continue with the rhyme? So here goes:
A squall of hawk wings stirs the sky
A hummingbird holds and then hies
If I could fly, I'd choose to be
Sailing through a forest of poet-trees

It's now up to Penny Klostermann to take the poem to new heights! Here's the line-up of contributors for the month:

1 Laura at Writing the World for Kids
2 Joy at Joy Acey
3 Doraine at Dori Reads
4 Diane at Random Noodling
5 Penny at A Penny and Her Jots
6 Carol at Beyond Beyond Literacy Link
7 Liz at Elizabeth Steinglass
8 Janet F. at Live Your Poem
9 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
10 Pat at Writer on a Horse
11 Buffy at Buffy's Blog
12 Michelle at Today's Little Ditty
13 Linda at TeacherDance
14 Jone at Deo Writer
15 Matt at Radio, Rhythm and Rhyme
16 Violet at Violet Nesdoly
17 Kim at Flukeprints
18 Irene at Live Your Poem
19 Charles at Poetry Time
20 Ruth at There is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken Town
21 Jan at Bookseedstudio
22 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge
23 Ramona at Pleasures from the Page
24 Amy at The Poem Farm
25 Mark at Jackett Writes
26 Renee at No Water River
27 Mary Lee at Poetrepository
28 Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe
29 Sheila at Sheila Renfro
30 Donna at Mainely Write

The painting, by Frederick Childe Hassam, "Newfields, New Hampshire" (1918), is courtesy The Athenaeum.

This is the first of four April Monday poems about works of art. All the poems have been inspired by the works of a New England impressionist painter, Frederick Childe Hassam (1859-1935). Today's watercolor, "White Barn," was painted by Hassam when he around 23 years of age.


"White Barn" by Frederick Childe Hassam (1882), courtesy The Athenaeum.

The poem didn't start off as a humorous piece. It was quite serious with lines about indecision, and shadows, and essential-ness. I originally was struck by how the white barn was painted without a speck of white on it. I wrote the first poem over the course of two days. I let it sit a while and bingo, the whole thing changed--completely--even the title! I think the only thing that remains is "whitewashed planks." The "off-color joke" is my little pun about the white barn not being white. Come back next Monday for another Hassam-inspired poem.

29 comments:

  1. Dear Diane, that barn does "flare" doesn't it? I love when we can amuse ourselves in poems. :) And yay for sailing and poet-trees! Thank you! xo

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  2. Love "flares" and also "snorted through its/whitewashed planks." Makes for one cosmic mess, but that's just like nature, isn't it? Wouldn't have it any other way. With the possible addition of more poet-trees. ;)

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    1. The whole picture flares--I wonder how it appears in person?

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  3. "Poet-trees" opens so many possibilities, Diane. Terrific. I love the idea of "snorting" too, not the usual calm around an evening or morning barn.

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    1. It springs from an over-active imagination!

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  4. Oh, me too! Sailing through that forest. And I vote we land on that flared barn roof.

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    1. I'm happy you like sailing, I changed that word a number of times before deciding sailing works!

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  5. I love your fun with the "white" barn. And appreciations for introducing me to this painter.
    Always, the term "poet-trees" makes my heart beat fast.
    I yipped out loud when I first bought Douglas Florian's book of the same name.
    Such a perfect line for this perfectly forming progressive poem partee, Diane.

    Happy week of Monday art poems to you, too!

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    1. I like poet-trees, too. Years ago, we had a poet-tree on a large wooden post at the Library. Sadly, not many people contributed a "leaf."

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  6. Oh, the neat possibilities that are opening up!

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    1. I hope so--there's still 26 days to go!

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  7. I woke up in the night thinking about Poet-Trees. Oh, my it makes my heart flutter to see it here, now.

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    1. What our minds do to us. I wish they'd work better in the day, though, when we're awake enough to deal with the ideas.

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    2. Yes! If only. Sometimes the urge to nap is the best thing -- then things become clearer in that weird half-awake, half-asleep state.

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  8. Diane, my day is coming up soon and your line about poet trees opens up such an imaginative flight for the progessive poem. You got my thoughts racing with your line. Penny, take it away. Also, thanks for adding your own poem for the NPM poetry parade. The visual is lovely and the words ring true of your style-always leaving a punch line or word for your readers.

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    1. I'm trying to get away from some of the punch-lining. I think it might get old after a while. But as you can see, I'm not there yet!

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  9. Thanks for this wonderful line, Diane!

    And thanks for sharing White Barn on a Summer Afternoon!

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  10. I haven't been able to keep up with each day's lines, but I like the way it's coming along!

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  11. Screeching in on a day-late visit, but happy to make the stop! Very playful, Diane, your delightful addition to the Progressive Poem AND those off-color, whitewashed planks. Thanks for the bit of backstory, too. Hats off to you on both accounts!

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  12. Sailing through poet-trees? Lovely! Makes me think of zip-lining through a lush forest where every leaf is a word, and the poems just rustle in your ears as you pass by...

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    1. I'm going to do a zip-line some day...

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  13. A building in nature can be so surprising! And I am having fun imagining that the poet-rees are right THERE in that painting, with your poem...with poem-leaves. I am so happy to be catching up!

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  14. Diane--look how late I am following the ProgPoem! After the last line, I thought someone would choose to be a flying beast of some kind, but no--instead you chose a setting with wide open possibility. Lovely!

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