Word and Theme for November

Hi everyone,

Where or where did October go! Hmmm, I believe I said the same thing about September. Well they both passed too quickly.

So here is a nice shiny new word for November’s W.O.M. Poetry Challenge. It is AWNING. Yup, that’s what I said. Don’t like it, don’t blame me, go after Renee La Tulippe for suggesting it. Besides, I bet you can do all sorts of things with a useful word like awning. Can’t wait for you to prove it!

The Theme for the month is LEAVES. Seems like the right time for that! And guess who suggested it? Well Renee of course. This is the first time in history that the same person has provided both the word and the theme. Naturally the pressure is on Renee to produce some poems this month!


Next year’s poetry workshop guests

Hi everyone,

Once again I want to thank J. Patrick Lewis and Renee La Tulippe for being my special Skype guests during the Poetry for the Delight of It workshop and to poetry editor Rebecca Davis for making a personal appearance at The Barn and giving a presentation on what an editor looks for in poetry.

Next year’s workshop has now been set for September 29-October 2 and I’m delighted to announce that my Skype guests will be Jane Yolen http://janeyolen.com/biography
Jane at Direlton Castle 2010
and Kenn Nesbitt http://www.poetryfoundation.org/children/poet-laureate.
Kenn Nesbitt Kenn, as you know, followed Pat Lewis as the National Children’s Poet Laueate. Jane is, well, Jane!

In addition, Rebecca Davis has kindly accepted my invitation to return to make another presentation. rebecca-davis

The program isn’t quite completed yet. I expect to have a segment on performance poetry but don’t have all the pieces in place. I’m still waiting on this year’s valuations to see if I need to add other segments.

As before, my cutoff number is fifteen. I hope to see the quota reached early, maybe by the end of this year, and am aware of some who have already indicated their intentions to register. I hope you’ll let others who might be interested know about the date and guests.


Poetry workshop, day 2

Hi everyone,

Yesterday was another good day at The Barn. These fifteen poets have many talents and I’ve read a lot of very good poetry. Senior Editor Rebecca Davis joined us in the afternoon and was quite helpful with her advice and honest answers to questions. She remained afterward and continued to respond to queries by several members of the group. Thanks, Rebecca!

Last night after yet another grand feast served by Chef Joseph, we took turns reciting poetry, performing poetry, even singing poetry as we sat in a semicircle around the patio fireplace. Jeanne Poland brought a carload of percussion instruments, enough to pass around to everyone, and we made beautiful music under the stars.

Today (Thursday) we break after lunch to go our separate ways but I know that the members of this highly cohesive group will stay in touch and plan other activities in the future.

The last but hardly least highlight of the morning will be Renee La Tulippe coming to us from Italy via Skype. She will demonstrate good techniques for reading our poetry before an audience. What else she might have up her sleeves is known only by the marvelously talented Renee herself.


Poetry Workshop

Hi everyone,

Yesterday was our first full day of working together and it was a good day. Lots of talent here among fifteen dedicated writers who are here to share what they know, learn from one another, and pick up pointers from me. A highlight was the Skype session with J. Patrick Lewis who spoke for thirty minutes in a Q/A session and reading. Pat’s sage advice was well received and I was grateful to have him join us. My thanks to Jo Lloyd for setting up the session, which went flawlessly.

Today my special guest is Boyds Mills poetry editor Rebecca Davis and tomorrow Renee La Tulippe will join us as my second Skype guest. I look forward to both days and both guests.

Last night after another wonderful dinner by Chef Joseph, we gathered outside around a crackling fire, toasted marshmallows according to Matt Forrest’s recipe, and took turns reciting poetry — a great way to end the day.