Friday, December 17, 2010

Poetry Friday: Song

I envision heaven in a selfish manner. I don't care which cloud you stick me on as long as I'm in possession of an honest-to-God, otherworldly singing voice. I've always felt broken because I can't keep a tune. What's in my head and my heart never matches up (not even a little) with what croaks out of my mouth. So being able to hang in there with the archangels is this tone-deaf girl's idea of being healed and whole.

In this season of using light to defend against darkness, music is one of our strongest weapons. I give you two examples: this poem, Song, which illuminates a lone singer, and the following video, which captures a flash mob of singers in a food court as they help the weary world rejoice.

by Eamon Grennan

At her Junior High School graduation,
she sings alone
in front of the lot of us--

her voice soprano, surprising,
almost a woman's. It is
the Our Father in French,

the new language
making her strange, out there,
fully fledged and

read the rest here

Poetry Friday is hosted today at The Poem Farm.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Poetry Friday: Hyper

I don't know how much time you have today. Enough for both a math doodle video and an exquisite poem about ADHD?

The video captures the quicksilver leaps of the human mind when it's chased by boredom into a world of knots and snakes and other satisfyingly twisty and mysterious doodle patterns. The poem, in a similar vein, ponders stillness and speed and perception. Each asks us: what's the rush? And I don't mean that in the standard "stop and smell the roses" way. I mean it as: what's the joy? What's the reason? Why do we bother to look?

Doodling in Math Class: Snakes and Graphs (with thanks to James Gurney, for posting this.) A commenter on his site says "The creator of this amazing clip is Vi Hart. Her website has many more such treats. She is the daughter of a creative math teacher and sculptor, George Hart, who also has good things to see at his website."

an excerpt from the middle of

by David Baker

Let me put it another way. After
twenty-four math problems, the twenty-fifth
still baffles her, pencil gnawed, eraser-
scuff-shadows like black veins on her homework.

It's not just the theory of division
she no longer gets, it's her hot clothes, her
itchy ear, the ruby-throated hummingbird's
picture on the fridge, what's in the fridge, whose

socks these are, why, until I'm exhausted
and yell again. Until she's gone away
to her room, lights off, to sulk, read, cry, draw.
No longer trusting to memory, she

writes everything in her journal now, then
ties it with a broken strand of necklace.
Of her friends: I am the funny one. Mom:
She has red hair and freckles to. Under Dad:

I have his bad temper. I know. I looked.

In one sketch she finished, just before we
learned what was wrong—I mean, before we knew
what to call what was wrong, how to treat it,

how to treat her—she captured her favorite
cat with a skill that skips across my chest.

read the entire poem here

Poetry Friday is hosted today by the fabulous Jama at alphabet soup.