My November W.O.M. poem

Hi everyone,

Here’s my SORRY poem for November.

Lost and Found
By David L. Harrison

Skinny woebegone hound,
Cowering inside a pound,
You were better lost than found.
You’re a sorry mutt you know.

Begging with those soulful eyes,
Wagging tail, pleading cries,
You must think you’re some prize.
I’d be nuts to get you though.

Velvet nose against my hand,
You must think I think you’re grand.
I swear I’ll never understand
How you made me love you so.

My October W.O.M. poem

Hi everyone,

Here’s my DIRT poem for October.

The Garden
By David L. Harrison

Later the seeds
will wake up thirsty,
throw off their covers,
swallow from the hose,
gain their footing,
periscope to the surface.

Before that the toiler,
trailing hopeful robins,
bandit sparrows,
weaves loamy braids
into dreadlocks laid
in luxurious rows,
warming the way to the table.

Word of the Month for November

Hi everyone,

I don’t have my computer today and won’t be able to remove October poems and comments just yet, but that doesn’t mean we can’t get started with new poems for November.

Remember what it is? BREW. Brew and Spree tied when we had a ballot so I announced then that we’d go with Brew this month. Whose idea was that? You, Matt?

My thanks again to everyone who played a role in making October so much fun. It was a fine celebration! I hope those who joined us for the first time or for the first time in a while will continue to play with us in November. I must say that the word — brew — is fairly foaming over with potential!


1,500 posts

Hi everyone,

The stats on my blog inform me that today marks the 1,500th time I’ve posted something. I know that some of you have been at it longer but this sounds like quite a few to me. Thanks to everyone who has joined me along the way and enriched the experience with your wisdom and support.

As we begin the last five days of October, I hope to see other poets join us in celebrating the 5th anniversary of Word of the Month Poetry Challenge. It has been a good month and I’ve enjoyed hearing from you, some for the first time and others who haven’t been around in a while. Here’s the roster of contributing poets so far. Let me know if I’ve overlooked you, and please keep them coming.

Jane Yolen
Kelly Kusterman
Jeanne Poland
Jessica Jensen
Cory Corrado
Julie Krantz
Linda Baie
Joy Acey
Linda Boyden
Mary Nida Smith
Karen Eastlund
Michelle Heidenrich Barnes
J. Patrick Lewis
Ken Slesarik
Patricia Cooley
Deborah Holt Williams
Michelle Kogan
Bridget Magee
Kenn Nesbitt
Buffy Silverman
Leone Anderson

Ana, 4th grade, Montverde Academy, Montverde, Florida, with thanks to teacher Kelly Kusterman
Emma, 4th grade, Esperanza Music Academy, Phoenix, Arizona, with thanks to teacher Ken Slesarik
Kristene, 4th grade, Esperanza Music Academy, phoenix, Arizona, with thanks to teacher Ken Slesarik

Living and Dying with Grace

BULLETIN: Kenn Nesbitt, Our U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate, has joined the celebration this month of our 5th anniversary of Word of the Month Poetry Challenge. Not once but twice! With thanks to Kenn, I hope everyone will scroll to the bottom of the adult poems for excellent examples of Kenn’s winning humor!

REMINDER: We are also blessed this month with the first student poems we’ve seen in a very long time. Please read them and let the students know how much we enjoy their work and appreciate them and their teachers!

Hi everyone,

Let me tell you about a new book. It’s called LIVING AND DYING WITH GRACE: A CAREGIVER’S JOURNAL. and is written by Susan Carmichael. I met Susan when she attended my first poetry workshop in 2011. The Barn wasn’t built yet so we met in the farmhouse that once was home to the founders of Highlights.Poetry Workshop at Honesdale, 2011 024 The picture is of Susan (left) and Heidi Mordhorst having an animated chat. Eight poets attended that workshop and we named ourselves SWAP 8+1. Swap had to do “with us swapping poems, energy, problems and success, plus all the help we give each other.”

True to our name, the members of SWAP 8+1 have remained faithful with correspondence. We have shared sadness, job and address changes, and warming success. Quite a bit of publishing news has been shared and I continue to be impressed by the determination of these poets to find outlets for their work. I’ll report on everyone’s adventures in a blog this week.

But for now, back to Susan and her new book. This one is not poetry. It’s about Horace, her father-in-law, who was a fine man and her good friend. Toward the end of his life Susan was deeply involved in caring for Horace and learning from him, in the process, the grace of dying with humor, kindness, and consideration.

I began reading this book as a favor and ended it with appreciation, not to mention the lump in my throat and tears in my eyes. I recommend Susan’s book for anyone who is caring for, has cared for, or might find themselves caring for a beloved family member. Susan, thank you for writing this.

If you want a copy of your own, is the only place Susan is selling it. She says, “if a group would like several copies, e-mail her at and she will gladly fill the request.