It is that rollicking good time day when you are encouraged to carry a poem and share it with friends, family, strangers - pass it around like a smile!
It started in NYC several years ago and now is celebrated all over. Go to poets.org for ideas of how to celebrate and poems you can print to carry or share. At my library I am postings and passing out some of my favorites by Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, Lucille Clifton, and many others. Fun times!
You can follow the hashtags #poetrymonth #pocketpoems or #poemaday to follow my Twitter and Instagram haiku with photos (haiga) all month and find other poets that are posting today and all through National Poetry Month.
My eight year old son went to school with this in his pocket:
Put Something In
Draw a crazy picture,
Write a nutty poem,
Sing a mumble-grumble song,
Whistle through your comb.
Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
Put something silly in the world
That ain't been there before.
I am experimenting with using Phonto and the Flickr photo editor Aviary to
add text so the haiku is directly on the photo. So far I like what I am
getting. I wish my iPod Touch had a better camera though! Maybe I
should upgrade to this.
Haiga is a Japanese poetic form developed in the 17th century. It is a
combination of haiku poetry, images, and caligraphy. In old Japan it was
ink paintings suggesting a connection to the haiku word images.
Nowadays many poets use photography. You can learn more about the form here and here. I have been looking at other modern English haiga on
these two sites: DailyHaiga and HaigaOnline. If you have done haiga before please share where
and let me know how your work procedes!
Last month I took part in the Hilary McKay blog tour with an interview focused on her Lulu books. It was such a fun interview - we got to have a fascinating conversation about how she worked with illustrator Patricia Lamont to portray her character Lulu. The publisher, Albert Whitman & Co sponsored the tour and promised to give away copies of the Lulu books to two lucky commentors on my blog post. Since only three people commented on that post I begged Albert Whitman & Co to spread the love a little farther, and they agreed! So now I just need to hear from you Sarah, Tanita, and Jill. Send me your snail mail and I will pass it on to the publisher!! Congratulations you lucky ducks!!
Every Monday the Kidlit blogosphere hosts a round up of posts about children's and young adult nonficiton books. Today I am hosting with links from all over. If you have a post up leave a comment and put your unique URL in Mr. Linky below. Then come back later in the day or tomorrow to visit all the blogs.
My contribution is a recommendation of the book Hand in Hand; Ten Black men Who Changed America by Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney. (Jump at the Sun Books, 2012). Winner of the 2013 Coretta Scott King Author Award. This flowing, accessible story of ten great leaders in American history covers the span of Benjamin Banneker, Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, W.E.B.
DuBois, A. Philip Randolph, Thurgood Marshall, Jackie Robinson, Malcolm
X, Martin Luther King Jr., and Barack H. Obama II. The Pinkneys speak directly to children and young adults about the trials and tribulations faced by these outstanding Black men and show how determination, struggle, faith and grace enabled them to change the world for the better. One section that I am making a point to share with my sons is the chapter on Thurgood Marshall, who Pinkney describes as a "one of a kind kid with a way all his own. The boy wore knee-pants and hard shoes. He carried a comic book in both his back pockets, and was good at snapping gum. [...] Thurgood was an A+ prankster, too." Pinkney goes on to say "A true trickster, the one who makes the best mischief, is the one paying the closest attention." I need to keep that in mind in my house! Thurgood's principal sent him to the school basement to memorize passages from the Constitution as a punishment. After a while he was known as the boy who could help other students with their memory work and explain all the hard words. This boy grew up to be "Mr. Civil Rights", arguing Brown vs. Board of Education and the one who "Knocked "separate but equal" on its crooked head." Andrea Pinkney's poetic prose reads like a folktale and her husband Brian's full color portraits and illustrations are vibrant and beautiful. This book is a treasure!!
Here is a collection of my daily haiku/haiga done through Instagram. I started using Phonto, a photo editor that works on my iPod to put the haiku directly onto the image. Have you tried this? If you are using Instagram let me know!
In years past I have used this space to post daily haiku and photos all through April. This year I am not going to use the blog to do it. I feel the need to change things up and be more mobile. I want to use my iPod touch to take photos and post haiku on Twitter. I am finding several hashtags in use today, the first day of National Poetry Month: #haiku #npm #poetrymonth #haikuaday #napowrimo. What have you seen or used?
You can follow me on Twitter @AndiSibley. I am also experimenting with having tweets sent to FB and the sidebar of this blog. I haven't used Instagram so far but I am curious about how that would work. Do you have experience with it? What do you like/don't like about it?
ETA: signed up for Instagram and will try using it all this month, sharing haiga on Twitter & FB.
You can find the whole lineup of bloggers celebrating Poetry Month here at Jama's Alphabet Soup. Find more poetry happenings and ways to celebrate at Poets.org.
In my library we will be posting poems throughout the month and doing Poem in Your Pocket day on April 18.