Thursday, April 17, 2014

"Seal Lullaby," by Rudyard Kipling [Poetry Friday]

I hope you've been enjoying our sharing of some of our favorite poems. I've really loved hearing my fellow Teaching Authors read!

I could never choose one favorite poem, but this is definitely one I come back to again and again. It has several elements I adore: rhyme, nature, the ocean, gorgeous language, a melancholy but still comforting tone, and content that acknowledges the dangers in the world but promises safety anyway.

Seal Lullaby

Oh! Hush thee, my baby, the night is behind us,
  And black are the waters that sparkled so green.
The moon, o’er the combers, looks downward to find us,
  At rest in the hollows that rustle between.


Where billow meets billow, then soft be thy pillow,
  Oh weary wee flipperling, curl at thy ease!
The storm shall not wake thee, nor shark overtake thee,
  Asleep in the arms of the slow swinging seas.


—Rudyard Kipling

And here I am reading the poem:



I hope you're having a terrific National Poetry Month! There's so much amazing stuff being shared in our kidlitosphere--it's hard to keep up, isn't it? I do hope you'll take a couple of minutes to go to our Blogiversary Post and enter our giveaway. You could win one of five book bundles from one of the Teaching Authors:>)

Artist/writer/blogger/poet and all-around lovely person Robyn Hood Black has the Poetry Friday Roundup today at Life on the Deckle Edge. Have fun!

[posted by Laura Purdie Salas]

13 comments:

Pam said...

I thoroughly enjoyed your reading of this lovely poem. I'm working on a rhyming pb draft. It is the hardest thing, EVER! So I need beautiful inspiration like the gift I've received on your blog today. Thank you.

laurasalas said...

Aw, thanks, Pam! I really appreciate your kind words. This poem is always an inspiration to me, too. A beautiful lesson in what the right combo of words and meter can make me feel. :>)

Carmela Martino said...

Thanks so much for sharing this, Laura. This poem is new to me, and you read it beautifully. I especially love the phrase:
>>weary wee flipperling<<

Esther Hershenhorn said...

Thank you, Laura, for introducing me to this sweet, gorgeous poem.
Your reading made me want to read it to my GrandKiddo pronto.

JoAnn Early Macken said...

Oh, that is lovely! I'm especially fond of "Oh weary wee flipperling"--such an appropriate term of endearment!

Robyn Hood Black said...

Such a beautiful selection, Laura - enjoyed hearing you read it as well. It will be fun seeing you over here!

Ruth said...

Beautiful! Kipling is so wonderful with rhythm.

LInda Baie said...

Laura, this is beautiful. I'm not familiar with it, so thank you very much. JoAnn took my favorite line, that little "flipperling"!

laurasalas said...

Thank you, Marti, Esther, JoAnn, Robyn, Ruth, and Linda. Sounds like "weary wee flipperling" is the big winner:>) And Amy Ludwig Vanderwater just pointed me toward this gorgeous choral arrangement of it by Eric Whitacre:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ya4OZ7_vz_c

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

Such a beautiful poem-- I can understand why it's one of your favorites. You can hear the waves in the choral arrangement as well.

April Halprin Wayland said...

Laura, yes,"weary wee flipperling"
is indeed a winner...and so is "Where billow meets billow, then soft be thy pillow"...and the swinging seas.
There's so much to love here. Thanks for sharing this one!

laurasalas said...

I so wish Whitacre had led this piece when he was here in Mpls...

laurasalas said...

Yes! It's just so comforting!