Poetry Friday: “Sledding”

national-poetry-month 2016

For some, winter may be behind us, but this past weekend we ended up with nearly 3 inches of snow and temperatures in the low-teens – so it really didn’t feel like spring! I’ve been meaning to share this poem for a couple years now and keep forgetting…so before spring actually DOES arrive, I thought I’d share it today:

Sledding

I love to sled,
I love to slide.
I find the biggest hill around
then jump aboard
my plastic ride
and start my journey toward the ground.

Racing down
a sheet of snow,
frozen cheeks and icy hair –
faster, faster,
here I go,
snowflakes flying everywhere!

Carve a turn!
Get it straight!
Don’t think I can take much more!
Wonder how I’ll stop,
but wait! –

……I guess…that’s what…this…
……………rock…
……………    ………is for……

– © 2016 Matt Forrest Esenwine, all rights reserved

Poetry_Friday logoIf you’re looking for more poetry, you’ll find the complete Poetry Friday roundup at Laura Purdie Salas’ home on the web, Writing the World for Kids, where she has some very putrid poetry! (not that her poetry is putrid – it’s really quite nice, actually – so you’ll just have to visit to see what I mean!)

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2016 Kidlit Progressive PoemIrene Latham‘s annual Progressive Poem continues all month long! A different writer adds a line each day, and on April 30 we’ll see how it ends. Today you can see how far we’ve come at Irene’s blog, Live Your Poem!

You can follow the 2015 Progressive Poem at the following blog spots:

April

1 Laura at Writing the World for Kids

2 Joy at Joy Acey

3 Doraine at Dori Reads

4 Diane at Random Noodling

5 Penny at A Penny and Her Jots

6 Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink

7 Liz at Elizabeth Steinglass

8 Janet F. at Live Your Poem

9 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche

10 Pat at Writer on a Horse

11 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog

12 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty

13 Linda at TeacherDance

14 Jone at Deo Writer

15 Matt at Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme

16 Violet at Violet Nesdoly

17 Kim at Flukeprints

18 Irene at Live Your Poem

19 Charles at Charles Waters Poetry

20 Ruth at There is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken Town

21 Jan at Bookseedstudio

22 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge

23 Ramona at Pleasures from the Page

24 Amy at The Poem Farm

25 Mark at Jackett Writes

26 Renee at No Water River

27 Mary Lee at Poetrepository

28 Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe

29 Sheila at Sheila Renfro

30 Donna at Mainely Write

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Poetry Friday: National Cereal Day!

PFAC-front-cover-Nov-30-WEB-jpeg-705x1030Almost exactly one year ago, the children’s poetry anthology The Poetry Friday Anthology for Celebrations (Pomelo Books) was released. In it, one can find my poem about National Cereal Day, which is coming up on Monday, March 7…so of course, I had to share it with you again!

Picky Eater

I love my Fruit Loops,
love my Trix,
love Cheerios
and even Kix.
I also like
my Apple Jacks –
but please don’t give me
Sugar Smacks,
or stars or squares or flakes
you’ve found –
I only eat, you see,
what’s round.

– © 2015 Matt Forrest Esenwine and Pomelo Books, all rights reserved

I was quite humbled that Kirkus singled out this poem in their review of the book last year. And if you’d like to see what a 14-year-old student decided to do with the poem, check out Sylvia Vardell’s video HERE – it’s quite fun watching someone recite something that you wrote!

Antarctica coverI also need to congratulate the winner of a new book!

Earlier this month, I interviewed Irene Latham and reviewed her new children’s poetry collection, When the Sun Shines on Antarctica: And Other Poems from the Frozen Continent (Millbrook Press). Everyone who left a comment or re-tweeted the post was entered to win a signed copy of the book…and out of all those names, only one would be drawn at random and proclaimed the WINNER! And that person is…

Robyn Hood Black!

Congratulations, Robyn! I’m sure you’re going to love it. Thanks so much to everyone who stopped by my little corner of the blogosphere and entered the contest.

poetryfridaybutton-fulllBut wait, there’s more! (poetry, that is) For all of today’s Poetry Friday posts, please visit Linda Baie at Teacher Dance! And happy early spring, everyone…don’t forget to turn your clocks ahead next weekend, as Daylight Savings Time begins!

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Did you like this post? Find something interesting elsewhere in this blog? I really won’t mind at all if you feel compelled to share it with your friends and followers!
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To keep abreast of all my posts, please consider subscribing via the links up there on the right!  (I usually only post twice a week – on Tues. and Fri. – so you won’t be inundated with emails every day)Cybils-Logo-2015-Web-Sm
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Also feel free to visit my voiceover website HERE, and you can also follow me via Twitter FacebookPinterest, and SoundCloud!

Poetry Friday: “January Thaw”

poetryfridaybutton-fulllBefore I get to today’s poem, I want to remind you that if you hadn’t had a chance to check out my interview with Irene Latham this past Tuesday – and my review of her new book, When the Sun Shines on Antarctica: And Other Poems from the Frozen Continent (Millbrook Press) – make sure you CLICK HERE to read it and enter to win your very own signed copy of the book!

So here we are, almost 3 weeks past January, and I just remembered I’d wanted to share this…but better late than never, right? I wrote this a few years ago, when the typical New England “January Thaw” lasted a few days – usually around the latter half of the month.  This year, the January Thaw was the entire month of January!

January Thaw

It happens every year.
Long before the robins sing,
when sky is bright and clear
one can catch a glimpse of spring.

Grass peeks through melting snow
as the air begins to warm.
We smile – and yet we know
pretty soon, another storm!

– © 2012, Matt Forrest Esenwine, all rights reserved

But wait – there’s still plenty more poetry around! You can visit Laura Shovan’s blog for the latest in her February prompt series, the Found Object Poem Project – see the projects, see what folks are writing, and then join in yourself!

And of course, be sure to stop by Donna Smith’s Mainely Write for the complete Poetry Friday roundup!

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Did you like this post? Find something interesting elsewhere in this blog? I really won’t mind at all if you feel compelled to share it with your friends and followers!
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To keep abreast of all my posts, please consider subscribing via the links up there on the right!  (I usually only post twice a week – on Tues. and Fri. – so you won’t be inundated with emails every day)Cybils-Logo-2015-Web-Sm
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Also feel free to visit my voiceover website HERE, and you can also follow me via Twitter FacebookPinterest, and SoundCloud!

Poetry Friday: “Poetry…Cubed”, Round 2!

Poetry Cubed logoHard to believe, but National Poetry Month was half a year ago, when I introduced a little writing contest I called “Poetry…Cubed.”  So, 6 months later, I think it’s time to bring it back and have some more fun!

First, a recap, in case you don’t know how this works: On The Food Network show, “Chopped,” chefs compete against each other by trying to create the best dishes they can using specific ingredients given to them in a special basket. They have no idea what’s in those baskets until they open them on the spot.

For the first round, they might have to create appetizers using, for example, pig knuckles, lima beans, and cocoa. The dishes are critiqued by a panel of judges, the chef with the least appealing dish gets ‘chopped,’ and the three remaining chefs then move on to the entree round, which might consist of geoduck, durian, and Good ‘n Plenty.

The final two move on to desserts, and the last chef standing wins.

For the contest I’m presenting here, I’ve taken the basic premise of the TV show and removed the anxiety…I call it “Poetry…Cubed!” Here’s how it works:

  • Use the 3 images (“cubed!”) below as inspiration to write a poem.
  • The poem can be any form, any number of lines, rhyming or not.
  • The only hitch is that you need to include a reference to all three images in the poem – either via concrete imagery or something more abstract.
  • Ornaments
    (click to enlarge)

    Then email your poem to me at Matt (at) MattForrest (dot) com before Nov. 30 and I’ll share them all here throughout the month! Out of all the poems entered, ONE lucky writer will be chosen at random to receive his/her choice of:

I’ll post all the poems and announce the winner on Fri., Dec. 4!

Keep in mind, I can only format poems to a small degree – so if possible, try to refrain from lots of unusual breaks and text placement. I’ll do my best to format your poem per your wishes, but WordPress will only allow me to do so much; blogging platforms aren’t known for being particularly poetry-friendly!

Ready? Here are your three images:

 IMG_0637 

Think you can make something delicious out of these ingredients? Feel free to click any of the images to enlarge them, and remember: your poems can use concrete references or abstract references; they’re poems, after all, so be creative!

To get things started, here’s a simple stanza I came up with:

Her, in November

Love’s seeds burst open
on the vine
as autumn plays its games;
the fire, ’tis sweet,
but once lit, none
dare try contain the flames.

– © 2015, Matt Forrest Esenwine, all rights reserved

poetryfridaybutton-fulllI only spent 15-20 minutes on that, so I’m sure you can come up with something better! I look forward to seeing it! Keep in mind, your poem doesn’t have to be the best, it just has to have a reference to each of the three photos – the winner will be chosen at random.

And for all of today’s Poetry Friday links and fun, please visit Katya at Write. Sketch, Repeat.!

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Did you like this post? Find something interesting elsewhere in this blog? I really won’t mind at all if you feel compelled to share it with your friends and followers!
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To keep abreast of all my posts, please consider subscribing via the links up there on the right!  (I usually only post twice a week – on Tues. and Fri. – so you won’t be inundated with emails every day)Cybils-Logo-2015-Web-Sm
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Also feel free to visit my voiceover website HERE, and you can also follow me via Twitter FacebookPinterest, and SoundCloud!

Poetry Friday: “September Song”

poetryfridaybutton-fulllToday I’m sharing a triolet I originally wrote about a year and a half ago, but which has gone through so many revisions I’ve lost count. Hope you enjoy it! Be sure to stop by Jama’s Alphabet Soup for all of today’s Poetry Friday links (and button candy!).

September Song

The autumn wind is growing colder.
As all the hills are set ablaze
a shiver stirs my neck and shoulder –
the autumn wind is growing colder.
These woods and I, just one month older,
yearn for summer’s sun-drenched days.
The autumn wind is growing colder
as all the hills are set ablaze.

– © 2015 Matt Forrest Esenwine, all rights reserved

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Did you like this post? Find something interesting elsewhere in this blog? I really won’t mind at all if you feel compelled to share it with your friends and followers!
SCVBWI_Member-badge (5 years)
To keep abreast of all my posts, please consider subscribing via the links up there on the right!  (I usually only post twice a week – on Tues. and Fri. – so you won’t be inundated with emails every day)Cybils-Logo-2015-Web-Sm
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Also feel free to visit my voiceover website HERE, and you can also follow me via Twitter FacebookPinterest, and SoundCloud!

Poetry Friday: “Goodbye”

Poetry_Friday logoI mentioned this past Tuesday I’ve been rather busy lately, but I couldn’t let Poetry Friday slip past without sharing something! This is my newest poem; I hope you like it.

Goodbye

The cupboards, bare.
The counters, clean.
The table…gone.
……….The floor
is worn from years
of paws and soles
that scuttled through the door.
.
Boxes, packed.
……….Papers, tossed.
No food, no clothes;
……………no spouse.
With one small word
the home I loved
…..goes back
……………to just
…………………….a house.

© 2015, Matt Forrest Esenwine, all rights reserved

My folks, who are both in their 80’s, are at a crossroads, trying to decide what to do with their home and property. Mom is in a nursing home, so dad needs to sell the home I grew up in so he’ll have the money to afford her care…but, as you might imagine, he’s having a difficult time making that decision. I wrote this last night, after visiting with each of them.

On a lighter note, Keri is hosting Poetry Friday today (in-between egg-gatherings and honeybee-swarms) at Keri Recommends – and shares a poem Irene Latham wrote about Keri’s “little” farm that is growing, growing, growing!

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SCVBWI_Member-badge (5 years)Did you like this post? Find something interesting elsewhere in this blog? I really won’t mind at all if you feel compelled to share it with your friends and followers!
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To keep abreast of all my posts, please consider subscribing via the links up there on the right!  (I usually only post twice a week – on Tues. and Fri. – so you won’t be inundated with emails every day) Also feel free to visit my voiceover website HERE, and you can also follow me via Twitter FacebookPinterest, and SoundCloud!

Poetry Friday: “Had I”

Hard to believe, but National Poetry Month is upon us already – welcome to April! Amy Ludwig VanDerwater gets Poetry Friday rolling for this momentous month by hosting today at her blog, The Poem Farm, so be sure to visit for all the links and high jinks!

National-Poetry-Month-Logo (2015)

I have a lot planned for this month, including an interview, teaching suggestions, and a contest…and I’m also very happy to once again be part of Irene Latham’s Progressive Poem 2015. (more on that, below)

mmpoetry-2015-rd6-gargoyles-vs-catatonic-1024x537
Click to see the final two poems!

First up: In case you have not been following my blog this month (ha ha, of COURSE you’ve been following the blog, I’m kidding!) the #MMPoetry 2015 tournament FINALS just wrapped up at Ed DeCaria’s Think, Kid, Think.

Buffy Silverman and Randi Sonenshine were the only two authletes remaining, and each was tasked with writing a children’s poem utilizing the words they were given: “gargoyles” and “catatonic,” respectively. It was a tight race, but my Poet’s Garage critique partner ended up victorious – so congratulations, Buffy!

As for me, I fell out of the running in the first round, but gained a new poem, nonetheless. The word I was given was “wherewithal” and I chose to go with a classic, old-fashioned sort of sensibility:

Had I

Had I the money – I would have bought a toy.
Had I a toy – I might have had some fun.
Had I some fun – I’d be a happy boy.
Alas, of all these things, I have not one.

Had I the wherewithal to grab a broom
and had the sense to do what Father said,
I would have swept the floor and cleaned my room –
with my allowance waiting, on my bed.

– © Matt Forrest Esenwine, 2015

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2015ProgressivePoemALSO: Irene Latham’s annual Progressive Poem got underway this past Wednesday, April 1! Each day, a different person adds their line to a poem that grows and grows over the course of the month…until it culminates April 30 with the final, closing line.

I’m excited – and a bit anxious – about the fact that I’ll be capping off the poem on that date!

You can follow Irene at her blog HERE and follow the 2015 Progressive Poem at the following blogs:

1 Jone at Check it Out
2 Joy at Poetry for Kids Joy
3 Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe
4 Laura at Writing the World for Kids
5 Charles at Poetry Time Blog
6 Ramona at Pleasures from the Page
7 Catherine at Catherine Johnson
8 Irene at Live Your Poem
9 Mary Lee at Poetrepository
10 Michelle at Today’s Little Ditty
11 Kim at Flukeprints
12 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
13 Doraine at DoriReads
14 Renee at No Water River
15 Robyn at Life on the Deckle Edge
16 Ruth at There is No Such Thing as a Godforsaken Town
17 Buffy at Buffy’s Blog
18 Sheila at Sheila Renfro
19 Linda at Teacher Dance
20 Penny at A Penny and her Jots
21 Tara at A Teaching Life
22 Pat at Writer on a Horse
23 Tamera at The Writer’s Whimsy
24 Tricia at The Miss Rumphius Effect
25 Tabatha at The Opposite of indifference
26 Brian at Walk the Walk
27 Jan at Bookseedstudio
28 Amy at The Poem Farm
29 Donna at Mainely Write
30 Matt at Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme

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Poetry_Friday logoDid you like this post? Find something interesting elsewhere in this blog? I really won’t mind at all if you feel compelled to share it with your friends and followers!
PoetsGarage-badgeTo keep abreast of all my posts, please consider subscribing via the links up there on the right!  (I usually only post twice a week – on Tues. and Fri. – so you won’t be inundated with emails every day)  Also feel free to visit my voiceover website HERE, and you can also follow me via Twitter FacebookPinterest, and SoundCloud!