Environment, poetry, comment, children's books,
Featuring: Erik The Great, Alan Patrick Traynor, Michael Lai, The Girl In The Hat (aka Anna Fonté).
As so many wonderful things are posted on the internet and a plethora of talent often goes unrecognised/undiscovered, I thought I would do a Pick-Of-The-Week feature on the plum tree. I asked Shawn MacKenzie and Jennifer Kiley to join me in this, and so they are adding their brilliant perceptions and discoveries. We hope to bring new voices to your attention from a wide field of talent through little snippets that whet your appetite.
For my first pick, I would like to bring you a book featured on This Kid Reviews Books. Erik is eleven years old, hugely talented himself, and a new, young, authorial voice in his own right. Erik also writes book reviews. Here is one of the books he has brought to our attention. I love the idea of a fractured fairytale, and this one is all about a pencil that encourages little ones to write whilst understanding the nature of courage!
Find the whole piece Here
Little Red Writing
Once upon a time
In pencil school,
a teacher named Ms. 2 told her class, “Today we’re going to write a story.”
“Yippee!” said the birthday pencil.
“Slammin’!” said the basketball pencil.
“Sharp!” said Little Red.
So begins a hilarious and exuberant retelling of “Little Red Riding Hood,” in which a brave little red pencil finds her way through the many perils of story-telling, faces a ravenous pencil sharpener (the Wolf 3000)… and saves the day.”
but I just could not resist this marvellous poem from Alan Patrick Traynor. I added this image, as my own grandmother used to smoke a pipe! In Alan’s piece, I can hear the silver hair speak: that kind, oldness that needs nothing, that has been combed through so many times, and the always being Irish that stirs the historied grass with countless sighs.
Silver is the winter
Of the Wolf
The hound’s gentle fork
Love is the elder
Grandmother by the door
In the murmuring wind
Did I awaken you
On the polished brass
Of winter roads
That fork will wasp’s wings go upwards
And apples that
Bathe in their lurid light and sleep will you
And cars outside
Where I stand in the memory of such things
By the charcoal gates
Were her fingers
Live the longest
Where the wind
Bends the fork into
The next life
Is anybody’s guess
And that’s all we do
So we play the Irish
The Playwright nequient
Irish until our face becomes the grass
Then we arrive
Fallen grows the upwards
Like an East Wind
Will I be East
But only so until the wind that sings so brings the Wolf
Silver is the winter
Of the Wolf
That hound’s gentle fork
And the wasps in the carpet by the bruxism balefire apples do I remember you
by Alan Patrick Traynor
© Sept 27th
Jennifer says: “Extraordinary Photographs. Best Blog I’ve seen all week. Theme is patterns of lines. Exceptional photographer. Have been following for quite some time. Usually spend hours looking at Michael’s photographs several times a month.”
Michael Lai blog; From Line to Patterns. Visit the piece HERE.
Shawn says: “I came upon Girl in the Hat’s blog this week by quite delicious happenstance. Here, in what she terms an “almost-poem,” is spare, mind-bending prose, a journey through memory, random thought, and recurring dreams. In a world of cookie-cutter writing, Girl in the Hat is original without being disingenuous, with edge and wit. She is a discovery I am delighted to share as my pick for this week.”
Hole In My Heart
I was born with a hole in my heart. I’ve always thought that would make a good first line for a story but in reality, it wasn’t that dramatic. It was a small hole and by the time I was 5, it had dutifully, reflexively, anticlimactically healed itself.
Kathy was my first friend. She wore princess costumes and when we played cowboys and Indians at recess she was always the one who got tied to the tree. To defend her from the cowboys, I’d hoot and shriek and stab the air with a sharp stick.
My first job was at an ice cream parlor when I was 12. I liked the free sample I’d get during break but afterwards, I had to practice scooping perfect 8 ounce dollops onto a scale before I could get back to work. The manager would watch over my shoulder until I could produce three perfect scoops in a row. I got fired for giving a friend 12 ounces and I never liked ice cream again.
For a year and a half I was an only child and when my little brother was born they say I pulled out all the hair on the right side of my head. My father remarried and had three more and by the time my little sister was born, I was 16. That was the year I had sex for the first time. I knew I wasn’t in love but he was nice and it seemed better that way.