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Bri Meets Books

Children's and YA literature reviews.

Category Archives: poetry friday

Fewer things are more beautiful in this world than sunsets. Particularly over water. I first discovered Emily Dickinson’s poetry in high school, when assigned a poetry journal. My mom, bless her heart, helped me choose several poets and poems to interpret, and taught me that Dickinson’s poetry was about “more than just death,” as I previously though. On my 18th birthday, I received a collection of Dickinson’s poetry, with the inscription, “You’ll probably just think these are about death!” Thankfully, no.

Nature rarer uses yellow

Than another hue;

Saves she all of that for sunsets,–

Prodigal of blue,
Spending scarlet like a woman,
Yellow she affords
Only scantly and selectly,
Like a lover's words.

Tabatha A. Yeatts hosts the roundup this week

Ted Kooser’s “Selecting a Reader” is one of my top 10 favorite poems ever, and I just love the way he writes these little slices of life, of people, in so few words. I chose “Flying at Night” for Poetry Friday because of the way he alternates viewpoints to describe a single event.

Flying at Night

Above us, stars. Beneath us, constellations.
Five billion miles away, a galaxy dies
like a snowflake falling on water. Below us,
some farmer, feeling the chill of that distant death,
snaps on his yard light, drawing his sheds and barn
back into the little system of his care.
All night, the cities, like shimmering novas,
tug with bright streets at lonely lights like his.

Critique de Mr. ChompChomp hosts the round-up this week

I was only familiar with Christina Georgina Rosetti’s poem “A Birthday,” but then I found this one. It has so many layers and is almost cinematic.

In An Artist’s Studio

Christina Georgina Rosetti

One face looks out from all his canvases,
One selfsame figure sits or walks or leans:
We found her hidden just behind those screens,
That mirror gave back all her loveliness.
A queen in opal or in ruby dress,
A nameless girl in freshest summer-green,
A saint, an angel –every canvas means
The same one meaning, neither more nor less.
He feeds upon her face by day and night,
And she with true kind eyes looks back on him,
Fair as the moon and joyful as the light:
Not wan with waiting, not with sorrow dim;
Not as she is, but was when hope shone bright;
Not as she is, but as she fills his dream.

Read Write Believe hosts the round-up this week

I’ve always loved poetry inspired by paintings and other forms of art. William Carlos Williams wrote several poems inspired by various artworks, including the one below. Over at The Poet Speaks of Art, there’s a collection of poems and the art inspirations.

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus, Pieter Brueghel

Landscape with the Fall of Icarus
William Carlos Williams

According to Brueghel
when Icarus fell
it was spring

a farmer was ploughing
his field
the whole pageantry

of the year was
awake tingling

the edge of the sea
with itself

sweating in the sun
that melted
the wings’ wax

off the coast
there was

a splash quite unnoticed
this was
Icarus drowning

Irene Latham is hosting the roundup this week

I think this is the third poem I’ve posted about rain. It always seems to rain on Fridays..
And I love Sylvia Plath so.

Black Rook in Rainy Weather

On the stiff twig up there
Hunches a wet black rook
Arranging and rearranging its feathers in the rain-
I do not expect a miracle
Or an accident
To set the sight on fire
In my eye, nor seek
Any more in the desultory weather some design,
But let spotted leaves fall as they fall
Without ceremony, or portent.
Although, I admit, I desire,
Occasionally, some backtalk
From the mute sky, I can’t honestly complain:
A certain minor light may still
Lean incandescent
Out of kitchen table or chair
As if a celestial burning took
Possession of the most obtuse objects now and then —
Thus hallowing an interval
Otherwise inconsequent
By bestowing largesse, honor
One might say love. At any rate, I now walk
Wary (for it could happen
Even in this dull, ruinous landscape); sceptical
Yet politic, ignorant
Of whatever angel any choose to flare
Suddenly at my elbow. I only know that a rook
Ordering its black feathers can so shine
As to seize my senses, haul
My eyelids up, and grant
A brief respite from fear
Of total neutrality. With luck,
Trekking stubborn through this season
Of fatigue, I shall
Patch together a content
Of sorts. Miracles occur.
If you care to call those spasmodic
Tricks of radiance
Miracles. The wait’s begun again,
The long wait for the angel,
For that rare, random descent.

Susan Writes is hosting the roundup this week.

Because I just started summer classes! I love the use of “platypi,” not a word you get to use every day. And the ending is something every teacher has had to say. (Hey, that rhymed!)

Don’t Bring Camels in the Classroom
Kenn Nesbit

An excerpt:

Don’t bring camels in the classroom.
Don’t bring scorpions to school.
Don’t bring rhinos, rats, or reindeer.
Don’t bring mice or moose or mule.

Pull your penguin off the playground.
Put your python in a tree.
Place your platypus wherever
you think platypi should be.

Read the rest at

Kelly Polark is hosting the roundup this week

I have a mean but lovable black cat. That’s her above… she’s a bit bigger now, but still no bigger than a kitten. She makes up for her size in attitude. I reread Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet recently, so today, I choose Rilke.

Black Cat

A ghost, though invisible, still is like a place
your sight can knock on, echoing; but here
within this thick black pelt, your strongest gaze
will be absorbed and utterly disappear:

just as a raving madman, when nothing else
can ease him, charges into his dark night
howling, pounds on the padded wall, and feels
the rage being taken in and pacified.

She seems to hide all looks that have ever fallen
into her, so that, like an audience,
she can look them over, menacing and sullen,
and curl to sleep with them. But all at once

as if awakened, she turns her face to yours;
and with a shock, you see yourself, tiny,
inside the golden amber of her eyeballs
suspended, like a prehistoric fly.

Read more Rilke?

The round-up this week is here at Picture Book of the Day