Poetry Swap–Part 2

A couple of weeks ago I shared most of the goodies I received during the summer poetry swap. Today I’m sharing my final treat. Jone‘s poem came beautifully mounted with an easel-thingy (the technical term, I’m sure) and is now sitting on my desk. And what a jewel it is–both the photo and the words that accompany it. I love the poem’s focus on presence in the moment. That’s the beauty of observing nature (especially through a camera) for me–focusing on the wonders of the moment.

©jone rush macculloch

And now, for your mild amusement, here are the poems that I sent my swapees. Someday I will learn how to use a simple program that allows me to lay-out poems on photographs. But in the meantime my kind daughter loaned her talents and put these together (which, come to think about it, is the simplest program I can imagine…) I chose a poem to send to Keri to match a photo I took of a spider building a web on a plant on our deck–the sunlight on her web added a bit of magic. (I cheated a bit for this one and revised a poem that I wrote for Today’s Little Ditty’s final spring challenge.)

© Buffy Silverman

I spend a lot of time down at our swampy dock, spying on dragonflies and damselflies. This green dragonfly inspired the poem I sent to Tabatha:

©Buffy Silverman

One evening I observed a damselfly just emerging from its nymphal skin. I thought I would write a single poem for Linda with photos of both the empty skin (called an exuvia, which is a fun word to say) and the new adult. But somehow that morphed into a haiku about the change, and a tanka about observing the critter. Should I admit that I borrowed the title of the book I was reading for the final line of the haiku? (The book, which I recommend, is not about insect metamorphosis!)

©Buffy Silverman

I had the good fortune to meet Nikki Grimes this summer, at a dinner that Ed Spicer gave in her honor. Nikki read from her collection, One Last Word, and I was taken both with her glorious poems and the golden shovel form. I really wanted to try writing a golden shovel, so that’s what I did with my poem for Irene, using a line from her poem “Tree for All” from Dear Wandering Wildebeest as the source for my end words: “Owls nest in my hidden knothole; my cradle cozies brand-new wings.” The photograph that accompanied the poem is of an itty-bitty monarch caterpillar, munching on some swamp milkweed blossoms.

©Buffy Silverman

For most of the summer I had a photograph on my desktop of an unopened Black-eyed Susan flower. I wanted to write something to go with it, but had no idea what. When I thought about writing a poem for Heidi, who often shares her teacher life, the flower became a student at the start of the school year.

©Buffy Silverman

And there you have it…writing and receiving poems for the summer swap, as always, was a highlight of my summer. Kat’s got all of today’s poetry friday highlights–all the way from oz!

29 thoughts on “Poetry Swap–Part 2

  1. Brenda

    Like Michelle, I’ll take my chances and throw my admiration on the heap. Such wonderful poems. I love dragontrap, dragonsnap. And that poem for Heidi makes the unopened rudbeckia just perfect. So much goodness here, like a quinoa salad that makes me feel good inside and out.

    Reply
  2. Michelle Heidenrich Barnes

    It took me a few days to get here, Buffy, but I see you’ve been well-lauded in the meantime. If I add my compliments on top, will the whole pile topple? I guess I’ll have to take my chances! Such a beautiful collection of poems, from beginning to end. You choose your words like you choose your photo ops—exploring your options, seeking out the hidden wonder, and choosing your words and moments with careful precision. Lets work on that book prospect, eh? 🙂 Oh, and PicMonkey is incredibly easy. Diane’s the one who first suggested that program to me. I’ve never tried any of the other ones mentioned.

    Reply
  3. Heidi Mordhorst

    It is really a treat and a treatise on your skills and sensibility to see all these collected together, Buffy. Where is the book that collects these beauties together, I ask? I feel grateful to have been a recipient!

    “Gardening” starts Tuesday…

    Reply
  4. Ruth

    This post is so full of treasures! My favorite is the last one. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the comparisons between teachers and gardeners. There’s a wonderful passage in The Wednesday Wars that uses that metaphor.

    Reply
  5. Linda Mitchell

    What a stunning summer collection! I agree that you were born to share beauty with a camera focus. You focused word play matches your eye. Life after life….what a line!
    I’m in awe

    Reply
  6. Penny Parker Klostermann

    Buffy,
    Your poems always amaze me. It’s like you’re meant to observe nature and then carefully choose words (always perfect words) to share your findings with the nature-loving, word-loving, poetry-loving world! This added joy and knowledge to my Friday!

    Reply
    1. Buffy Silverman Post author

      Aw, Penny–your compliments always make me blush. Glad to give you a little joy (and I had to look at a Texas map and breathe a sigh of relief to see that you are far from the flooding.)

      Reply
  7. Robyn Hood Black

    SO much beauty and natural wonder over here today. Thanks, Buffy! I love Jone’s “carnelian jewel” – and all the rest of the dragonflies and damselflies hovering about, and the spider weaving, and the caterpillar caterpilling, and the blossom on the verge of bloom….

    Reply
  8. Michelle Kogan

    Nature’s streaming out in your light filled, intriguing collection of poems. Jone’s words sparkle as her image catches the light, and I’m entranced by both the light and layers of movement in your “Web Weaver” poem. I loved the transformation from a dark poem into light in “Monarch’s Commandment,” thanks for all!

    Reply
  9. Ann Finkelstein

    These are wonderful, Buffy. Thank you for sharing them. The poetry swap is such a fantastic idea. It’s wonderful that non-poets can participate by reading the wonder and beauty of your words.

    Reply
  10. Kathryn Apel

    I couldn’t even try to pick a favourite, Buffy. They are all breathlessly beautiful. A wonder in every way.

    I think you can do something like this in Canva? (If you don’t have a program on your computer – and want to try it. 🙂 ) I signed up 2 years ago, and last night had my first attempt at it, creating a brochure. It was astonishingly simple, and the finished product looked so professional. (Which yours do too!)

    I usually do my photo inspirations with PhotoShop – because I am very finicky, and I don’t know if Canva would give me quite the level of control I would like???

    Reply
    1. Buffy Silverman Post author

      Thanks, Kat–my daughter uses a program that’s similar to PhotoShop–and I think PhotoShop Elements came on my computer, so I really should try using it. Maybe I signed up for Canva when someone mentioned it on Poetry Friday a while back. I guess I need to stop being lazy/luddite-ish and tackle one program!

      Reply
  11. Linda Baie

    I adore your pictures, Buffy, every time. I, with my brother and Ingrid, watched loads of damsel flies mating on a log sticking out at the edge. I thought of you and how you would have loved that sight! Each poem brings an extra thought to the beauty of the image. The poem swap from you is a treasure, and thanks again for it. And, just like Jone, I’ve used PicMonkey & Picasa, but it is nice to hear you have an ‘assistant” techie!

    Reply
  12. Jone

    I adore your photos and poems. What treasures for everyone to receive. BTW, I use PicMonkey to get the text and can also use Picasa. But if daughter is willing to do for you, perfect.

    Reply

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