Category Archives: clmooc

Friendship Lost: NPM23 Day 16

You lightly caress my cheek

I’ve come to depend on the warmth

of your embrace

then you vanish


leaving me in the cold

in the gray

while you play hide and seek

in the thick marine layer

your reach diminished

no longer within reach

of my cloud cooled skin

leaving me bereft

pining for your healing rays

Come back to me spring sun!

What You Missed: NPM23 Day 15

Today #verselove prompt played on that question to teachers dread…did I miss anything? And I loved the opportunity to play with the idea of what was missed as I crafted a poem about my walk at the beach today. I hope my poem brings you along and gives you a taste of my energizing walk.

What You Missed

Today on the beach

you missed

the unfurling of tension

spooling from my shoulders

as I breathed in the briny sea air

that is still not quite spring warm

You missed

the tropical smell of sunscreen

on bared bodies

plunging into the too cold surf

laying on the too rocky shore

playing together in community

in this community treasure

You missed

the unending science lessons

as I studied the geology

of crumbling cliffs

and ocean-smoothed cobble

the biology

of velellas velellas

the not quite jellies

washing up on the shore

You missed

the pelicans

enjoying the low tide reef

and the pock marked rounded rock

a bowling ball for an octopus?


I took my camera along

so you can enjoy my beach walk with me

Free Write: NPM23 Day 14

It was serendipity that today’s #verselove prompt by Margaret coincided with an exploration of “Tiny Perfect Things” in my classroom today. We read the book by the same name and then picked a tiny perfect thing as the subject of our poetry. Students wrote some wonderful pieces–I wish I had jotted down some of their wonderful lines to share with you all! That will have to be another post.

My tiny perfect thing piece was inspired by a photo I took this week…of a dandelion growing in a crack in the road in my neighborhood.

Road cracked

dandelion rooted



yellow blossom


Take note:

live in possibility

turn lemons

into lemonade

find the silver lining

Inhale deeply

exhale a wish

for generations

seeds floating

whose dreams will come true?

What can we learn from a dandelion?

Found Poem: NPM23 Day 13

Today I wrote a poem from a poem–a found poem, that is. Dave at #verselove suggested finding a text to redact, to find a poem within the words already there. My mind immediately went went to a favorite poem of mine, one I always share with students (even if they are only 6!). So I took Naomi Shihab Nye’s Valentine for Ernest Mann and found a poem.

Poem Secrets

spirit says

poems tell secrets

sleeping shadows


before we find them

skunk eyes


crawled and curled

give us poems

check the odd sock

you’ll know

Inspiration: NPM23 Day 12

Anna over at #verselove invited us to be inspired by a poet we shared a birth month with…but instead, I happened upon a poem by a wonderful SDAWP colleague poet that stopped me in my tracks. I highly recommend reading Everything Needs Fixing by Karla Cordero. There are so many lines that I loved…but I picked this line to inspire my (very short) poem tonight: …but what I’m certain of, is still,. the uncertainty of which tools repair the aging dog, the wilting snake plant, the crow’s feet under my eyes…

The busiest of days pushed me toward the shortest of poetry formats. I chose 17 syllables–a Haiku–to respond.

Fix This

seeking solutions

as the world turns, life happens

where is the tool kit?

Prime Learning: NPM23 Day 11

Prime numbers, creating limits and brevity of language, a structure to build with. Many thanks to Erika at #verselove for a prompt that asks us to craft a poem that explores an abstract concept using lines built of prime numbers. I’m not sure that everyone will agree with me, but I see learning as an abstract concept–one that is hard to pin down and define. As one who spends all day with young learners, I’m constantly reminding myself to get out of the way and let the learners in my room do their thing. I’m not quite satisfied with my effort–and I really wanted to end up with a prime total. Maybe I’ll get some feedback that can lead me back in that direction!

Prime Learning

Define learning: Time for play, messing and making, hands in and hands on

like water through stone, it will find its way through to joy

explore, engage, express — get out of the way

if you let learning happen

pitched squeals of delight

in their eyes


Life Cycle? NPM23 Day 10

An invitation to write a science poem–yes please! And the serendipity of our caterpillar sighting at school today made the perfect topic for the “whimsical science poems” at #verselove that Brittany prompted.

Life Cycle?

Caterpillar crossing

scrunch by scrunch

to the oohs and aahs

of its first grade audience

And then they notice the poop

on the picnic table and our eyes rise up

Fireworks explode

in a tree full of caterpillars


like tinsel

on a 1960’s Christmas tree

Will they be there tomorrow

or will they be

                bird snacks



into blossoms


egg laying

a new crop

of caterpillars

A life cycle continued

or broken?

Break the Break: NPM23 Day 9

I realized today that I forgot to post my poem for day 9. #verselove had prompted a poem that breaks rules–but instead my poem was all about the end of my spring break. I suppose since it began as a Haiku, it did break those rules along the way as well.

Break the Break

At the break of break

Songbirds trill, sun warms the now-spring air, breath flows in and out

I suppress the urge to throw the alarm clock across the room

Break broken

Something You Should Know: NPM23 Day 8

Emily (who happens to be from my writing project!) at #verselove invited writers to share something about themselves using Clint Smith’s poem by the same name as inspiration. Thanks for a great prompt Emily! I knew right away what I would write about–but it was much harder than I anticipated! Here’s my attempt:

Something You Should Know

is that the teenaged me bonded with Dad over

sprint cars as pit crew members

Squeezed in the back of the truck

nestled with the spare tires

on long road trips to the racetrack

Circles of speed

left turns only

going around and around

arriving nowhere fast

Rolling tires

topping off fuel

pushing the race car to the starting line

Dressed alike in white jeans and t shirt

as we traverse the muddy track

trying not to wipe grease stained hands

on those bright white pants

Life’s lessons:

watch your back

compete even if you can’t win

fitting in sometimes means standing out

and eventually you figure out what matters most in life

through the relationships built

watching cars drive around in circles.

Cliffs: NPM23 Day 7

Today’s #verselove prompt was “death in a poem” and I struggled. My mind searched for ways to weave the theme of death into something I could handle on this last weekday of spring break. You’ll not be surprised that I turned to nature. I was thinking about the difference in the way we describe landslides (or in our parlance, cliff failures) on the southern CA coastline as compared to the way that landslides were described in Zion National Park. There, the landslide was an expected way that nature sculpts the landscape. Of course, there were also not multimillion dollar homes perched along the rim that crumbled. So, I’m not so sure that this qualifies as death in a poem, maybe instead it is life in a poem. I chose to use an etheree–a 10-line form that begins with a single syllable and build, adding a syllable to each line until you reach the tenth line with ten syllables.



Fail daily

Crumbling downhill

Everything tumbling

Into a pile below

Erosion meet gravity

Cliff death creates new habitat

Algae covers what was once a road

In nature, death offers new beginnings