Friday, January 27, 2012

Newt's Poem to Poor Kids: An Original Poem about Newt Gingrich

Today, I’m sharing an original poem about Newt Gingrich that I included in The Republicans’ “Ideas Man” & The Junior Janitors of America, an article I wrote for Jonathan Turley’s law blog. Some of you may remember that Newt said he thought child labor laws were stupid when he spoke at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government last year. He had a hare-brained idea that unionized school janitors could be fired and poor students could earn some “honest” money working as assistant janitors under one master janitor.

Newt’s own words:

“It is tragic what we do in the poorest neighborhoods, entrapping children in, first of all, child laws, which are truly stupid. Most of these schools ought to get rid of the unionized janitors, have one master janitor and pay local students to take care of the school. The kids would actually do work, they would have cash, they would have pride in the schools, they’d begin the process of rising.”

“You’re going to see from me extraordinarily radical proposals to fundamentally change the culture of poverty in America.”

That’s one radical proposal for sure. And one for which the Republicans’ “Ideas Man” received quite a bit of criticism. Later, Newt bowed “to concerns that janitorial work is dangerous.” He then decided he needed to clarify his proposal and provided more specifics. He said poor kids could mop floors and clean bathrooms after school. He also suggested that they could sit in a clerical office greeting people.

Click here to read my Turley blog post.

Here is my poem:

Newt’s Poem to Poor Kids
Go fetch a bucket
And grab a mop.
Now get to work.
Clean up that slop.
Scrub the bathrooms
From stem to stern.
Don’t be a slug.
It’s time to earn
Your living, kid.
You’re poor. Boohoo!
I have no pity
For kids like you.


The Poetry Friday can be found at Hey, Jim Hill!

Friday, January 20, 2012

A Groggy Sleeping Beauty Speaks to the Prince Who Just Woke Her with a Kiss: An Original Fairy Tale Poem

Here's another one of my fairy tale poems. This one is about Sleeping Beauty.

A Groggy Sleeping Beauty Speaks to the Prince Who Just Woke Her with a Kiss

I pricked my finger on the wheel
While spinning. How my head did reel,
And suddenly I counted sheep…
Then in an instant, fell asleep.
That’s all I can remember, though.
Was that one hundred years ago?
Are Mommy, Daddy still alive?
And when, dear prince, did you arrive?

You woke me with a kiss? How sweet.
Forsooth! I’m hungry. I could eat
Three little pigs, a wolf, a bear,
Red Riding Hood, Rapunzel’s hair!
Would you go fetch some burgers, fries,
A mushroom pizza—super size—
Three partridges, a roasted boar,
Two apple tarts…and one thing more:
A gallon of fresh lemonade?
Then please, dear prince, go kiss my maid.


I'm doing the Poetry Friday Roundup at Wild Rose Reader this week.

The Poetry Friday Roundup Is Here!

The Poetry Friday Roundup is here this week. Just leave the URL of your post in the comments. I'll continue adding links throughout the day.

Gregory K. of Gotta Book delights us with an original poem titled My Favorite Shirt.
Myra Garcas-Bascal shares hist whist, a poem by e.e. cummings, over at GatheringBooks.

Amy Ludwig VanDerwater has an original poem with alligator parenting advice along with some writing advice about hearing stresses in words at Poem Farm.

Over at A Teaching Life, Tara has Deborah Warren’s Marginalia, a poem about coming upon the notes made long ago in best loved books.

Heidi Mordhorst of My Juicy Little Universe presents a six-word poetry essay today on teaching.

Mary Lee Hahn has a poem about Jackie Robinson by J. Patrick Lewis at A Year of Reading. It’s from Pat’s forthcoming book on Civil Rights heroes.

Jeff Barger of NC Teacher Stuff has posted a review of the soon to be released A Leaf Can Be..., which is a book of verse about leaves written by Laura Salas and illustrated by Violeta Dabija.

Liz Steinglass joins us Poetry Friday posters for the first time—and shares her original poem titled Bad Homework. Welcome, Liz!

Tabatha Yeatts is on vacation, enjoying a well-earned rest under the sun, but she's left behind word clouds she created with Tagxedo from three different poems. Check them out at her blog The Opposite of Indifference.

Head on over to Carol’s Corner today. She’s featuring DREAMSAND DIRECTIONS, a collection of 200 poems, written by the students of Denver.

Maria Horvarth shares a poem by William Stafford in which he recalls a startling meeting with his muse.

Irene Latham has an original shipwreck poem—written in the voice of the ship!

Mandy has a poem about “finishing” by Ralph Waldo Emerson at Enjoy and Embrace Learning.

Linda presents an original memoir poem—as well as works by other poets— at TeacherDance today.

Diane Mayr has been a busy woman. She shares some Emily Dickinson-inspired haiku at Random Noodling. Kids of the Homefront Army continues with The Last Straw. At Kurious Kitty’s Kurio Kabinet, Diane shares a poem by Robert Frost titled A Winter Eden. And at Kurious K’s Kwotes, she has a quote by Frost.

Ever the sharer of delicious literature and recipes, Jama Rattigan has a poem for us today by Daniel Nyikos titled Potato Soup—AND a recipe for Hungarian Potato and Sausage Soup. Yum!
Author Amok returns today after a long absence from Poetry Friday. She says she couldn’t resist celebrating William Stafford's birthday, this week. She’s sharing his poem Passing Remark with a response poem of her own.

MotherReader says she has a clever poem of pronunciationfeatured today at her blog.

Ed DeCaria says he’s excited about participating in Poetry Friday again. He invites us to
stop by to read his newest poem Worst in Show—and to try our hand at illustrating one dirty, disgusting dog.

Laura Salas  is in with I've Got Your Nose by Shel Silverstein at her blog. She also shares 15 Words or Less Curly Slide poems.

Andi Sibley shares an original wintery baseball haiku at A Wrung Sponge.

Over at Fomagrams, David Elzey has two original cross-outpoems for us. He’s claims they’re of varying quality. (I had never heard of cross-out poems before.)
This week, Karen Edmisten presents a poem by Richard Jones titled Rest.

Jone says she’s thinking about Robert Burns today. Check out her poetry post at Check It Out.

Carlie has an original love poem for us at her blog Twinkling Along.

Renee La Tulippe joins us for her second Poetry Friday with an original children’s poem.
Liz Garton Scanlon highlights a poem about science titled OftenI Imagine the Earth. It was written by Dan Gerber.
We have another Poetry Friday first-timer this week. His name is Charles Van Gorkom. He’s sharing his poem Minus Eight at Twenty Below.  He says it provides a glimpse of life in the small north Canadian town where the movie was filmed.

Charles Ghigna, aka Father Goose, has an original poem titled My Birthday’s Tomorrow. It’s for all the little cowboys in the world.
Caryl is celebrating the snow and cold they're finally getting in Minnesota by remembering Lois Lenski's poem/book, I Like Winter.

At Wild Rose Reader, I have another original fairy tale poem titled A Groggy Sleeping Beauty Speaks to the Prince Who Just Woke Her with a Kiss.

Janet Squires has a brief review of Hound Dog’s Haiku, which was written by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Mary Azarian, at her blog.
Joy said that she’s started working on a bestiary. Today you’ll find her poem BartholomewBuffalo at her blog Poetry for Kids Joy. Yesterday, she posted Amy Aardvark.

Jim Hill shares his original poem Driveway Basketball with us today.
Ruth is highlighting a poem titled A Mother to Her Waking Infant by Joanna Baillie.

Added on Saturday, January 21st.

Kort has a post that features two pieces by Charles Bukowski at One Deep Drawer.

Zombie Logic gives us The Perfect Crime (A Tiny Drawing Poem).

Friday, January 13, 2012

FAX to Prince Charming: An Original Fairy Tale Poem

Nearly twenty years ago, I began work on a collection of fairy tale poems. I have posted a number of the poems previously at Wild Rose Reader. Today, I have a poem written in the form of a FAX from Cinderella to Prince Charming.




             10 TINY TOES LANE
             FAIRYTOWN, FRANCE

Remember me…the lovely lass
Who lost her slipper made of glass?
I didn’t want to leave the ball,
But I received an urgent call
From Rent-A-Coach demanding I
Return their carriage pronto. Why?
I guess some wealthy magistrate
Reserved it for a midnight date.
I’ve heard you’re searching everywhere
To find the maid who fit the pair
Of teeny tiny crystal shoes.
My darling prince, I have good news:
I’ve got the left. You’ve got the right.
Come try it on MY foot tonight!
You’ll find my address up above.
Can’t wait to see you. All my love.


The Poetry Friday Roundup is at A Teaching Life.

FYI: I’ll be doing the Poetry Friday Roundup next week at Wild Rose Reader.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

2011 Cybils Finalists Announced!

The 2011 Cybils Finalists were announced on New Year’s Day. I was away in the White Mountains of New Hampshire celebrating with friends for a few days and wasn’t able to post anything on my blog.
You’ll find links to the titles of the finalists in all the Cybils categories here.

Once again, I served as a first round poetry judge. Click here to read descriptions of the six poetry books that we selected as finalists.

The 2011 Cybils Poetry Finalists

Cousins of Clouds: Elephant Poems by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer

Dear Hot Dog by Mordicai Gerstein

 Emma Dilemma: Big Sister Poems by Kristine O’Connell George

Requiem: Poems of the Terezin Ghetto by Paul B. Janeczko

Self-Portrait with Seven Fingers: The Life of Marc Chagall in Verse
by J. Patrick Lewis and Jane Yolen
We Are America: A Tribute from the Heart by Walter Dean Myers

Friday, January 6, 2012

ROCK CANDY: An Original Poem

A few years ago, I wrote a Wild Rose Reader post titled How Sweet It Is!: A Poetry Tale. In the post, I talked about a collection of candy poems that I had written—and provided some background on the project. Here’s an excerpt from that post:

My collection of candy poems takes you through a year with sweets. For example, there are poems about a heart-shaped box of chocolates for Valentine's Day, marshmallow chicks for Easter, toasting marshmallows for summer, licorice for Halloween, and chocolate coins for Hanukkah and Christmas.

I wrote the following poem for the month of January. When I was looking at the rock candy that I had bought at Yummies—a candy store in Maine—it made me think of icicles and cold winter days.


Jack Frost waved his magic wand
And conjured up a crystal candy
Perfect for crunching on a winter day…
A rough, jagged icicle
Of sugar frozen on a wooden stick.


 Happy New Year to All!

The Poetry Friday Roundup is at Teaching Authors this week.