April 12, 2016

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

NPM 2015: What Are You Wearing? It's a Wrap Dress

Tomorrow, we say farewell to National Poetry Month 2015. Thanks to all of you for following what's been an amazing series on poems about clothes. Why clothes? Read this post.

National Poetry Month may be ending,
but you can eat poetry anytime.
It's as easy as opening a book.
We've looked at everything from underwear to topcoats, from rainbow skirts to muddied white sneakers. I've learned so much from all of the guest bloggers. 

Clothes -- and poems about them can:

help us express our individual style,
make us feel connected to the person the article of clothing belonged to,
represent a season, a mood, or a longing,
be descriptive of a battlefield or a shared experience between parents and children,
create a sense of comfort and warmth,
be intimate, because they are held close to our bodies in a way that few other things are.

I am beginning a third grade poetry residency. This week, we worked on list poems. Naomi Shihab Nye's "Words in My Pillow" from the anthology Falling Down the Page was our model.

You'll find "Words in My Pillow"
in this anthology of list poems
from MacMillan.
Several students wrote a "Words in My Closet" poem. I decided to join them.

Words in My Closet
by Laura Shovan
after Naomi Shihab Nye

I keep words in my closet.
Words that make me look good.


No one sees them
until I put them on.
but I know what's in there--


UNDERWEAR is in there.
JELLYFISH SOCKS are in there.

The words plan outfits together
when I'm not looking.

This BLOUSE and that SKIRT
like hanging around together.
FLOWERS brighten up my closet.
in my closet.

My friends the words
know better than I do
what fits me well.

Next week, I'll begin posting some of the third grader's list poems. They have been doing an awesome job.

Thanks again to all of the wonderful bloggers who let us into their poetry closets this month.

A skirt-full of flowers from me to you.
You'll find this and more floral skirts
at Polyvore.
ICYMI: In our poetry closet, you will find...

UPDATE: Thanks to all those who have posted a clothing poem on your home blogs and shared a link to AuthorAmok.

Read Irene Latham's ekphrastic poem "Yellow Dress."
Read about Carol Varsalona's vintage pantaloons!

And be sure to stop at Space City Scribes. The blogging team out of Houston (thus their cool name) is hosting Poetry Friday this week.

*Your suggested clothing poem prompt for Friday, May 1: Personification
If an article of clothing could talk, what stories would it tell? Whether it's a thrift store find, or an item for your closet, let your clothes speak for themselves. Has that black fedora traveled with you to Mexico? Was your daughter wearing that dress on her first day of kindergarten? Have your white Keds become mud-streaked from your hours spent in the garden? Maybe your jeans are tired of being patched and mended and would love to be retired.

Send your poems any time. I'll post original work and recommended poems on Friday.


Margaret Simon said...

I bought Falling Down the Page. I hope it's ok for me to use your poem, too, as a mentor text. I'd love to see what my students come up with. Thanks for hosting this wonderful month of clothing poetry.

Tabatha said...

Enjoyed your wordy closet, Laura!

Linda B said...

The connection of 'words' and 'clothing' is clever, Laura. Sometimes they do speak to me, sometimes crying out for someone new to join them! Thanks for a terrific month.

jan godown annino said...

Oh I am sad to take off this poetry outfit & fold it away Laura. It's been a joy to try on.

But wait, it's always a great fit online, so we can return & have samples.

Your list poem with the words creating outfits is fun & inventive.
It brought an image to my mind of my Mother wearing an orange poncho one time. And I hadn't thought of that in years.

I am sure the third-graders are wrapped up in your poet residency.

Waving my scarf at you,


Diane Mayr said...

Have a great residency and thanks for all the delightful word pictures you gathered for us in April.

Gathering Books said...

You make it seem simple, but coming up with a poem in relation to words on my closet might not be as easy as it seems. I love this poem and the whole exercise of it.
I might attempt it, on my own, for a little something new in my poetry.

thanks for sharing.

jama said...

Your poem is so clever, Laura. Love it! Jellyfish socks!

Karin Fisher-Golton said...

Such a delightful poem! It grabbed me at "cashemere, quirky, and poncho" together--made me see that closets can have their own energy and personality. I love thinking of the flowers brightening it up while the Raven's sweatshirt is yelling, "Touchdown!"

Heidi Mordhorst said...

I add my thanks for this wonderful month of poetry garb! Your list poem came out so well (PURPLE) and I'm sure that the 3rd-graders are benefitting immensely from your poetry presents (sic).

But where's the picture of you in a wrap dress?

Mary Lee said...

Your project was so much fun! I loved getting to know you and other bloggers via clothes! (So fun to have quirky and elegance in the same poem/closet!)