I so appreciate the community of writers and makers that take the time to read my posts and provide supportive feedback. And it’s because of them that I took the time to write this lazy Sunday. It was dreary and gray today, the perfect weather for staying inside to read and relax. Luckily, before we even realized it was damp and chilly, we headed to the beach for a low-tide walk. The mist dampened my cheeks and hair, but not my spirits as I explored the familiar shoreline. And the reward: breakfast out at the local diner just a short walk from the beach!
And thanks to Ronald who encouraged me to use the daily create suggestion as inspiration…I actually went back a day, inspired by “create a collage of a loved one,” I created a photo collage of lifeguard tower 19–the landmark I frequently walk to as my turn around point. I realize I frequently take a photo of tower 19: on gray days, on cloudy days, on brilliant blue sky days, looking up at the steps, facing north, facing east… And thanks for Margaret who offered a #poemsofpresence challenge in May, which today I took as an invitation to write a Haiku expressing an appreciation of Tower 19.
Today was one of those gloomy, gray days. There wasn’t quite rain, but the air was saturated and left a fine mist of droplets on everything…including me. A busy work day left me leaning on a short form for today’s poetry: Haiku (with some literary license).
Faced with a long drive back home, we decided to detour and find some mini adventures on our way. It makes for a long day…but was filled with small surprises that provided the perfect fodder for some Haiku.
My students and I are 23 days into our poem-a-day challenge. While not all have stayed caught up…many have. It’s such fun to watch their knowledge and skills with poetry and writing grow as they engage with written language and ideas every day.
Yesterday I invited students to create some Haiku focused on gratitude–something I had experienced through #haikuforhealing a while back. This seemed like a good time for some healing Haiku.
It was such fun to see what my student came up with. They posted their Haiku along with a photo on our class padlet. Here is a small collection of just the poetry–and notice how many students focused on family members as the subject of their poems.
And my own:
wind brushing my face
dappled light bouncing off trees
nature brings me peace
Last night on our National Writing Project connecting the network zoom call, my colleague and I were asked to facilitate a “making” session–a place for a small group to make something together. And since writing is making, we thought about some way to have our group engage in a small writing piece that collectively made something bigger.
Inspired by the Springtime in Washington Haiku Contest: Poems on a Pandemic article another colleague shared with me earlier in the week, we decided to create a shareable slide deck of our own version of Coronavirus Haiku. We invited participants in our breakout session to create a Haiku (short poem, 17 syllables, 5-7-5 pattern), and then add the poem and an image to a slide in the collaborative deck.
I offered my own as example:
So this post serves as an invitation to all of you. Take a few minutes to write a Haiku or other short poem about some aspect of your coronavirus experience. It can be funny, somber, documentary, whimsical, sad, angry…
You can access the slide deck here: Coronavirus Haiku: Short Poems Documenting Life During a Pandemic. Writing is not only making, it is also connecting. And can be healing as well. A few years back I wrote a post about my response to another blogger and colleague’s invitation to write #haikuforHealing–a balm for the tired spirit. So let’s connect and heal as we write together.
Though it’s still April, we’re already dealing with what will soon become May gray. It’s that pervasive marine layer that characterizes spring and early summer here in Southern CA. But we really can’t complain. The weather is mild and the ocean always welcomes.
Today I noticed the royal terns hanging out on the beach. Before I knew what they were, I called them Groucho Marx seagulls. They have big dark eyebrows and a bright orange beak. Distinctive, distinguished, comical.
I know I’ve seen plumeria–those fragrant Hawaiian flowers–and some people even have them growing where I live in San Diego. But somehow it slipped my notice that plumeria is a tree! Today we took a walk through a plumeria grove–with many trees bursting with plumeria blossoms.
Tonight, as we celebrated our last night here in Hawaii, my sweet husband decided I needed a plumeria lei. It was such a treat to feel hugged by the tropics! The warm moist air encouraged the fragrance to emerge, perfuming both me and the air around me. Tonight’s poem tries to capture that moment using the brevity of Haiku. Here’s my attempt:
While I haven’t participated in #rhizo15, I have been intrigued by the ideas behind rhizomatic learning and the thinking that learners can direct themselves, learn from one another, and transform learning in the process. (If I have that wrong…someone please correct me!) And the Connected Learning MOOC, known as the #CLMOOC (massive open online collaboration) is starting up in a few weeks!
So instead of cleaning my house or working on report cards last week, I started playing with some photo apps, creating some photo art. And then yesterday Margaret Simon initiated a #digilit challenge…with the first week being focused on creating #photoart. How could I resist?
So I started with the image I had created using the app Waterlogue, creating a watercolor version of the photo I had taken. Then, because Margaret modeled adding poetry to hers, I decided to create a haiku to express why I had stopped and snapped the photo in the first place. I shared this image with her on Facebook yesterday.
And then today I decided to do some exploring and mess around with Thinglink to add some other media to the image. I started by adding a link to the original photo I had taken before turning it into a watercolor painting. I also decided to add a favorite piece of music, so I linked a YouTube video of Louis Armstrong’s What a Wonderful World. And then, just for fun, I added the link to Margaret’s Pinterest page where there are examples of other’s #photoart. Here’s my result: