Obedient October/November Blend

Obedient… hmmm, not always me; for instance, like me missing to write a blog in September! So sorry. I love you dedicated souls that reminded me. You are very precious. Evidently people DO care about my personal life, and learning new writerly tidbits, thank you.

I have been enjoying our beautiful fall colors, and I’m sure some of you have even observed a little snow, while my readership on the other side of the world is teasing me with beaches and surfs. What one wants, the other has.


 I sat in one of my favorite spots contemplating why the L is worn off on my keyboard haha! Must be all those LOVE and LIFE poems that come tumbling out.

I sat in one of my favorite spots contemplating why the L is worn off on my keyboard haha! Must be all those LOVE and LIFE poems that come tumbling out.

 A little walk does the soul good, and clears the mind, especially in such a beautiful place as this.

A little walk does the soul good, and clears the mind, especially in such a beautiful place as this.

As you can see I’ve had the opportunity to fully enjoy the beautiful colors of the seasons.

I also had the chance to have a little one on one time, with my youngest granddaughter Harlow Rain. What a pure delight she is. Children make your soul young again.

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We talked in the past few blogs about new writers. There are those of you that are learning to write, getting the nerve to share your work, and take it seriously. Again, makes me so proud of you. There is a poetry book club site that you may find helpful. Take a look around, there are interviews with different authors, including myself. You can read some of their work, and find great books that will help you. They also have a link to “My Word Wizard Poets.” Definitely worth the look. I have pieces published with them as well, but you won’t know its me, as I write under a secret name for them. :) PLEASE submit some of your work to me. I’d love to share it.

This month one of my favorite writers was nice enough to showcase one of his pieces. Please enjoy the following poem by a very talented man, Rob Lam.


Life Awake

What comes before
Fades away water
through my hands

Future is now
Still unknown
just beyond my reach

My Great Adventure
The Big Unknown
Who I am, who I become

Looking in, looking out
What will remain
When I fade away

Beautiful, just beautiful! Thanks Rob!


I appreciate all of your support so much, with your interactions on my different social media’s and book sales, plus word of mouth business. You’re the bomb! So with that being said, the answer to your most recently asked question, is yes! I do have a shipments of all three of my books, that I would be happy to sign for you personally, and as gifts for your loved ones for the upcoming holidays. Use the contact tab, or send me a private message on one of the social media’s and I’ll handle that for you. Thank you!

 Your choices.

Your choices.

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Wishing all of you, peace, beauty and happiness until we chat again.







Posted on October 26, 2018 .

Absurd August

Absurd is right! We missed a good six weeks of summer here in Eastern Wa, as did many around the state due to wildfires, and dense smoke. Third week of July we got socked in with "hazardous" air quality index numbers, and it just lifted yesterday. Phew! 

 From my deck

From my deck

 Sun mid day from my deck (sorry lousy quality)

Sun mid day from my deck (sorry lousy quality)

We had a few days where finally we couldn't smell too much ash. Which allowed me to attend our yearly family camp trip, but wearing a mask most of the time. This year was held at Sun Lake Resort Dry Falls. Eighteen in attendance, and lots of fun.

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Kind of took over the place. 

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 My youngest granddaughter "Harlow Rain" sitting with grandma. 

My youngest granddaughter "Harlow Rain" sitting with grandma. 

 Goofy Harlow Rain

Goofy Harlow Rain

 Second youngest granddaughter Maizy Pepper

Second youngest granddaughter Maizy Pepper

 Left and middle are my two oldest granddaughters Tiera Genesis, and Adriannah Alyse, and their friend Maddie.

Left and middle are my two oldest granddaughters Tiera Genesis, and Adriannah Alyse, and their friend Maddie.

 My girlfriend Cheri, and I at "Wine Down Wednesday"

My girlfriend Cheri, and I at "Wine Down Wednesday"

I also managed to sneak in a couple weeks at our local winery for music, great wine and friendship.

This months blog is more personal as I appreciated all my family in the past few weeks, and the love that surrounds me. 

Wishing you all the best! Enjoy your friends, and family. They're what makes the world go round. 

 

 

 

Posted on August 28, 2018 .

Joyful July

Hi Everyone!

I'm barely slipping in here to talk to you this month. Summer has hit hard, with our weather being in the triple digits daily. That makes for a joyful time for me! Sun, fun, sun, and more fun. 

Last month I taught you the structure of a Tanka poem. I loved your feedback, and enjoyed reading your work! Very, very nice. If you are brave enough to allow me to post them, let me know, I'd love to! 

So, you've been telling me you'd really love to write poetry, and work towards publication. But, you feel no one will take you seriously because you haven't had any formal training. You asked if I took classes before starting my career. The short answer is no. I have not attended any 'Residency MFA Programs.' I don't hold a MFA (Masters in Fine Arts). I hold a Masters in Healthcare Administation. However I've been reading, and writing poetry since I was very young.  As I grew older, I also read books on 'How to write poetry', have worked with other poets and writers in groups, and attended writing conferences.  

Many, many poets have never had any formal training. I found an interesting article interviewing various poets, asking their option on this issue. My personal opinion is NO, you don't need formal training. Writing poetry is a natural born art. I feel if you write what's in your heart, and it's your passion, and you are true to yourself in what you write; meaning you are writing what YOU want to write, not what you think people want to read or hear, you're on the right track. I have read many works from schooled poets, that never touched on any of my senses, and I have read poetry from writers that don't even know they are writers, can't spell, use terrible grammar, and yet their poems are epic! So do yourself a favor, if you want to write, write! Because if you feel it, others will too. Take a look at this article '27 Writers on Whether or Not to Get Your MFA'.  You're going to find that even those with an MFA don't think you need it. 

Here's a poem I wrote last year for you.

To The Artist

And since when did others
around you become the expert
on your life, or how you work your craft?
They haven't, so carry on. 

So get busy and fulfill your passion.
Wishing you the best until next time!

Posted on July 27, 2018 .

Journalistic June

Hello Readership!

Thank you for all your feedback on "Poem in your pocket" day.  So proud! Many of you went all out, good for you. 

The Art Walk in Wenatchee is always a fun event. I get to meet new, and interesting people. This time I had the most lovely conversation with a fellow poet. I did a few readings, and he recited.  At the very end he wrote one for me, and quietly left. Very talented young man. I'd like to share his poem:

I saw your beauty shinning through.
A deep breath in a dream.
All blonde and laughter, youthful truth.
As pretty as I've ever seen.
When falling from the rafters
whispered echo,
"hold on tight"
Forever to declare my love to you,
descending through the skylight.

Written by Michael Reed Schooler

Just a reminder, I would be honored to showcase your poems as well. Use the contact tab to submit. 

I'm excited to hear many of you are now journaling in poetic form. It's how I got started, so kudos to you! Again, don't be shy, send me your art, and let's share here for others to read. 

New Flash! According to the National Endowment for the Arts, in the past 5 years within the U.S. the amount of poetry readers has doubled to 28 million adults. That's the highest it's been since 2002. Keep on reading!

So you've asked for another lesson in a structured form of poetry. This month we'll learn about the Tanka. It's a form of Japanese poetry that traditionally consisted of a 31 syllable poem written in a single unbroken line. Tanka translates as "short song" and now is better known in its 5/7/5/7/7 syllable count form. This is the configuration in which I typically write a Tanka. So let's get started. 

Just like a Haiku, the Tanka is normally written about seasons, love, nature, sadness, and other strong emotions, using the first person point of view. Here is one I wrote, and we'll break it down. 

Line One - 5 syllables          The cover of clouds
Line Two - 7 syllables          Shades the dripping dew on leaves
Line Three - 5 syllables       Heaviness surrounds
Line Four - 7 syllables         As the days are passing by
Line Five - 7 syllables.         With the shadow of the sun

And there ya have it. Obviously this one is about nature, and it gives you a sense of what season it is. Give it a try, and send me your work!

Until next time, be happy, and true to yourself.

 

 

 

Posted on June 14, 2018 .

May Flowers

Good day to you all!

All the April showers certainly gave us May flowers, I hope you are enjoying them as well.

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Tell me, how did "Poem in Your Pocket Day" go for you? Were you able to share a poem with others throughout the day? I hope it was fun for you!

I want to thank you for your overwhelming response about the teaching I did in March on the structure of a "Triolet". I loved the poems you shared with me! Keep up the good work! I will try to do this with you more often on other structured poems.  Good job!

Recently I have been asked about Mothers Day Poems, and where you can find and read them  since the day is almost here. Please find a list here of modern and some classics that you can read. So many beautiful ones. 

The Academy of American Poets is such a valuable resource for writers, teachers, and those with the love of the written, and spoken word. They just learned yesterday, they've been honored by the National Book Foundation for their "Teach this Poem" project. The Academy of American Poets started this project in September of 2015. The project includes a timely poem, along with materials, and activities for teachers to use in order to bring poetry into the classroom in an easy manner. It's absolutely free, and a wonderful resource. Go for it teachers, use this link.

My next book signing will be June 1st, 2018 for the famous "Art Walk" in Wenatchee Wa. I would love for you to pop in, have a snack, say "Hi", and even get a signed copy of one of my books. 

Location is at "Ye Olde Bookshoppe", 11 Palouse St. Wenatchee WA 98801 

See you then! Friday June 1st, 2018 from 5:00-8:00 P.M.

Keep reading, keep writing!

 

Posted on May 11, 2018 .

April is What??....

That's Right! April is National Poetry Month

"National Poetry Month was inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996. Over the years, it has become the largest literary celebration in the world with schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets celebrating poetry’s vital place in our culture."

"Every April, on Poem in Your Pocket Day, people celebrate by selecting a poem, carrying it with them, and sharing it with others throughout the day at schools, bookstores, libraries, parks, workplaces, and on Twitter using the hashtag #pocketpoem." 

"Poem in Your Pocket Day was originally initiated in 2002 by the Office of the Mayor, in partnership with the New York City Departments of Cultural Affairs and Education, as part of the city’s National Poetry Month celebration. In 2008, the Academy of American Poets took the initiative to all fifty United States, encouraging individuals around the country to join in and channel their inner bard. In 2016, the League of Canadian Poets extended Poem in Your Pocket Day to Canada." - Taken from Academy of American Poets

Poem in Your Pocket Day 2018 will be held on April 24.

Academy of American Poets, has listed 30 ways to celebrate this month. Ready set go!

30 ways to celebrate national poetry month

  1. Request a free copy of the National Poetry Month poster until mid-April; posters can be purchased for $5.00 each in our Poets shop thereafter (while supplies list).
  2. Sign up for Poem-a-Day and read a poem each morning.
  3. Sign up for Teach This Poem, a weekly series for teachers.
  4. Memorize a poem.
  5. Create an anthology of your favorite poems on Poets.org.
  6. Encourage a young person to participate in the Dear Poet project.
  7. Buy a book of poetry from your local bookstore.
  8. Review these concrete examples of how poetry matters in the United States today.
  9. Learn more about poets and poetry events in your state.
  10. Ask your governor or mayor for a proclamation in support of National Poetry Month.
  11. Attend a poetry reading at a local university, bookstore, cafe, or library.
  12. Read a poem at an open mic. It’s a great way to meet other writers in your area and find out about your local poetry writing community.
  13. Start a poetry reading group.
  14. Write an exquisite corpse poem with friends.
  15. Chalk a poem on the sidewalk.
  16. Deepen your daily experience by reading Edward Hirsch’s essay “How to Read a Poem.”
  17. Ask the United States Post Office to issue more stamps celebrating poets.
  18. Recreate a poet’s favorite food or drink by following his or her recipe.
  19. Read about different poetic forms.
  20. Read about poems titled “poem.”
  21. Watch a poetry movie
  22. Subscribe to American Poets magazine or a small press poetry journal.
  23. Watch Rachel Eliza Griffiths’s P.O.P (Poets on Poetry) videos.
  24. Watch or read Carolyn Forche’s talk “Not Persuasion, But Transport: The Poetry of Witness.”
  25. Read or listen to Mark Doty’s talk “Tide of Voices: Why Poetry Matters Now.”
  26. Celebrate Poem in Your Pocket Day today! The idea is simple: select a poem you love, carry it with you, then share it with coworkers, family, and friends. 
  27. Read Allen Ginsberg’s classic essay about Walt Whitman’s “Leaves of Grass.”
  28. Sign up for a poetry class or workshop.
  29. Get ready for Mother’s Day by making a card featuring a line of poetry.
  30. Read the first chapter of Muriel Rukeyer’s inspiring book The Life of Poetry.

Join the fun and enjoy!

Posted on April 12, 2018 .

Memorable March

Top of the month to you! Well, a bit of a slide towards the middle actually, but nonetheless March! This month I'm going to put your memory to work in learning how to write a structured poem.

I'm proud to say, that I am working with a few budding poets in terms of putting their glorious thoughts, and words into form.  One form that seems to be very intriguing with many, is a French style called a Triolet. It happens to be one of my favorites, and it reminds me of a chorus of a song, since it has repeating verses. It's also quite simple to put together.  Are you ready?! Lets do it.

The French Triolet form is made up of 8 verses, each having 8 syllables per line. Lines 1, is repeated in lines 4 and 7. Line 2 is repeated in line 8. So in essence you only write 5 verses.  The topic can be whatever you wish. 

I wrote a Triolet this morning that we can use as an example, entitled "He Gives"

1. Our memories, and happenstance. 
2.
3.
4. Our memories, and happenstance.
5.
6.
7. Our memories, and happenstance.
8.

So here you can see I only wrote one verse, but was able to use it in 3 of the lines in the poem. Let's move on to the second verse.

1.
2. He looks at me, and takes a chance. 
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8. He looks at me, and takes a chance.

So there we used our second verse in 2 places. This verse normally rhymes with the first one, but doesn't necessarily have to. 

 Then comes our stand alone verse.

1.
2.
3. His heart to mine, my soul to his. 
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.

Now we will move to our coupled verses that ordinarily rhyme, but again, this is not a hard and fast rule. 

1.
2.
3.
4.
5. When skies are gray, he paints them pink.
6. So better days, are here I think. 
7.
8.

When writing a Triolet this is exactly the process I go through. Now let's put it all together.

"He Gives"

1. Our memories, and happenstance.
2. He looks at me, and takes a chance.
3. His heart to mine, my soul to his.
4. Our memories, and happenstance.
5. When skies are gray, he paints them pink.
6. So better days, are here I think.
7. Our memories, and happenstance.
8. He looks at me, and takes a chance.

I would LOVE if you would give this a try and send me your poems!

The best to you, and as always thank you for all of your eagerness, and support.

Posted on March 14, 2018 .

Fabulous February

.... and that is just what it has proved to be so far. I'm trying not to get too excited, but it's been in the high 30's, low 40's, and our snow is melting! Dreaming of spring and summer.

In honor of Black History Month, which is February, poets.org is celebrating, not only this month, but all year long, literary works by both classic, and contemporary poets. Here you can find essay's, lessons for teachers, important books, and letters from classic African American poets. Join me in forever learning and broadening your horizons. 

In a much more well known vein, this month is known for sweethearts. Poetry is long noted for romantic ideations. Whether you are looking for a gift, or words to write the perfect card, poetry is always a good choice.  What better way to express your passion, tenderness, and love. You still have time to pick up a copy of one of my books to give to your special someone. Please click on this link for quick access to my collections of poetry. 

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The best to you all, and thank you again for your support!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted on February 5, 2018 .

January Promises

Hello Friends!

Have you made all your promises to yourself as to how much better you're going to make this year?

Here is my wish for you.

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To help you keep the thought of reading, and poetry in your hearts and minds, take a look at the New Years poetry to read about new beginnings. 

Every year I make a goal for myself as to how many books I'm going to read. If you are involved with Goodreads, they have a challenge you can participate in. You compete against yourself, but you can also see what your friends goals are. It's fun! Give it a try. 

So many books, so little time. I usually have four books going at all times. One for fun, (Mysteries) one poetry by another author of course, one for self improvement, and one classic. What are your goals? If you need a little help in finding books, Goodreads is a great place, and here is a link to the Most Anticipated books for the first half of 2018. 

There has been some crazy weather across the United States, so I hope you have safe travels wherever you're going.  My mom used to say that "snow covers all sin". It's beautiful where I am right now.

 Photo by Craig P. Weeks

Photo by Craig P. Weeks

Until next time, be safe, happy and finding yourself living your dream. 

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Posted on January 15, 2018 .

Delectible December

Hello to my readership, and all poetry lovers out there. 

This is a busy month for many of you, spending time with family and friends, and eating all kinds of naughty delectable goodies. What a great time for leggings :)))

I want to thank you very much for your continued support, and all of the books you've purchased for gifts! I hope they all arrive on time. 

Speaking of giving, did you know that James Patterson, (Best Selling Author) for 3 years in a row, has given a bonus to many independent booksellers in the total amount of $350,000?! He's committed to putting books in the hands of readers. You can read the entire article here

Have you heard of the CDC Poetry Project? According the Poetry & Writers Daily News, Poets Sarah Freligh, and Amy Lemmon have started this project in response to the Trump administrations, request to the CDC to not use certain words in their communication.  They have invited poets to submit poems using all of the banned words such as fetus, evidenced-based medication etc. 

If you are looking for poems to fit the season, you may find a few you like here. Grab a hot cup of tea, and settle in for a few good reads. 

On a personal note, I am enjoying the coziness of my home, communicating with my readers, and loving all the requests for signed books. Future events will be coming, as soon as we can get through some of this winter weather. 

Until next time, enjoy and stay warm!

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Posted on December 19, 2017 .