Friday, November 5, 2010

Poetry Friday Roundup and a Couple of Dog Poems

The Teaching Authors are so excited to host Poetry Friday today! What is Poetry Friday? A weekly celebration of poetry on the Web. Bloggers from all over share their favorite poems, review poetry books, and contribute their thoughts on poetic topics. One blog rounds up all the posts each week so poetry lovers can find and enjoy them all. Welcome to the roundup!

In honor of Poetry Friday, we have two poems today. By happy coincidence (or maybe ESP), April and I both wrote poems about our dogs. Here's mine. Enjoy!

What Is She?
by JoAnn Early Macken

With her black and white speckles
and her stubborn streak,
Bea leads the way,
jangling as she trots,
tail unflagging,
always on her toes.
She plows headfirst into each moment,
black patches covering both eyes and ears,
sniffing every splotch on the sidewalk.

When people ask, "What is she?",
we tell them what the shelter said, but nobody believes it.
They can’t resist a guess: "Maybe pointer?"

When she meets another dog,
she plops to the ground, tail a metronome,
waits for the signal it’s okay to play,
takes the first step in the introduction dance,
risks a quick pounce, feet splayed, head down,
woofs, and bounces.

What is she? We don’t know.
She’s a mutt.
     She’s Bea.
          She’s ours.

Here is April's dog Eli and her poem, which originally appeared on an NPR bulletin board.

by April Halprin Wayland

The dog park
is dog dark.
It can haunt you
like the hooting of something you can’t see.

There is no moon.

You’re both loners.
No dogs, no other owners.
Mostly it’s ghostly.

No owl, mouse or moon
can chase this ghoulish feeling.
Your dog finds a bone.
At night it’s not stealing.
He knows: it’s his alone.

Then—the double clink
of the double dog park gate.
Must be fate.

Two forms
one four-legged,
one hard to discern, not howling, probably human
walking towards you
a fellow dark dog park devotee.
Probably not a parolee.

And then a kind of thrill:
An all-white dog,
convenient on a black night.

Though you hear two dogs
swirling in large circles in the damp dirt
you see only one blinking by.
The other, yours, is invisible
in the dog dark.

If you have a link to share for Poetry Friday, please leave it in the comments. I'll update this blog throughout the day. New to Poetry Friday? Here's what you do:

1. Leave the exact link to your Poetry Friday blog post (not your generic blog address).
2. Say a little something about your post.
3. Link back to this page within your post.

Happy reading!

JoAnn Early Macken

Morning Roundup
  • Diane Mayr has three Poetry Friday posts today: a Poem a Day blog from a fellow NE librarian at Random Noodling, a look at the anthology Songs of Myself at Kurious Kitty, and a P.F. quote by Don Marquis, accompanied by an awesome travel poster of the Grand Canyon, at Kurious K's Kwotes.
More at Midday
  • Karen E. is in this week with "In the Middle" by Barbara Crooker, here.
Evening Additions
Bedtime Bonus
  • Janet Squires has 'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving, written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey.
Thanks for all the woofs, comments, and dog pictures! Next week's Poetry Friday roundup (Friday, November 12) is at Liz in Ink.



Diane Mayr said...

Hi Joann! Love the dog poems. And that tee-shirt!

Today at Random Noodling I feature a Poem a Day blog from a fellow NE librarian.

Kurious Kitty looks at the anthology Songs of Myself.

The P.F. quote at Kurious K's Kwotes is by Don Marquis, and is accompanied by an awesome travel poster of the Grand Canyon!

Andromeda Jazmon said...

Great dog poems and photos! I love that spooky feeling in the second one.

I have original haiku and photos up at A Wrung Sponge today. Thanks for hosting!

laurasalas said...

I'm in for Poetry Friday with my book cover of my next poetry picture book at

And 15 Words or Less poems are at

Thanks for hosting, JoAnn!

Amy L V said...

Thank you for hosting...and for beginning my day with such dog love. Today I have a post about how poems can heal us, along with #23 in my series of poems about poems.
Off to hug my dog!

Tabatha said...

Sweet dog poems! I have The Finest Hour today. Happy Poetry Friday!

laurasalas said...

Oh, love those dog poems. I especially like

She plows headfirst into each moment,


She’s a mutt.
She’s Bea.
She’s ours.


one hard to discern, not howling, probably human
walking towards you
a fellow dark dog park devotee.
Probably not a parolee.


Though you hear two dogs
swirling in large circles in the damp dirt
you see only one blinking by.
The other, yours, is invisible
in the dog dark.

Makes me want to go give my dog another morning hug, even though he stinks and was just in my chair on my Snuggie, which he is NOT allowed to be!

Sally Thomas said...

Thanks for hosting. Great dog poems!

I'm sharing a self-imposed animal-poem assignment at Castle in the Sea: Poetry Friday.

My animals aren't very cuddly . . .

Thanks again for hosting.

Shelley said...

"Early" is the last name of my mentor and the most intelligent woman I know!

No dogs in my poems, but they're about a young farm wife and her husband and son, so there's the occasional cow. It's about the last Great Depression (the one before this one).

"Rain: A Dust Bowl Story"

Mary Lee said...

Love your poems! I'm in with my October mosaic of photos I took last month and a part of a Linda Pastan poem that perfectly describes October and November.

Thanks for hosting the roundup!

christine M said...

Thanks for hosting! I'm in over at Simply Put with an original poem by my teenager. Her own take on Romeo and his ill-fated romances.

Stenhouse said...

On the Stenhouse Blog this morning we have a student poem titled "Comida." Happy reading!

Susan Thomsen said...

Thank you so much for rounding up.

I am in with a found poem based on a passage from Spilling Ink (Roaring Brook, 2010). It's about finding your voice.

Chicken Spaghetti

Debbie Diller said...

Hello! I have a poem by Valerie Worth this morning called "Acorn." Enjoy!

Author Amok said...

Love the dog poems! JoAnn -- your Bea has something in common with Miss Boo, a cat from Betsy Franco's "A Curious Collection of Cats," which I'm sharing today.

Left the link and a comment on your last post early this AM. In case it got lost:

jama said...

Wonderful dog poems!

Today I'm sharing "Eating Together" by Kim Addonizio, and some thoughts about saying goodbye:

Thanks for hosting today!

Ruth said...

From a windy, stormy Haiti, I have a Longfellow poem about building a ship. Also a link to my found poem earlier this week using words from tap-taps in Port-au-Prince.

Thank you for hosting!

Sally said...

Hi, Sally at PaperTigers here. I'm in for Poetry Friday with a post on the poetic origins of Diwali which begins today! See:

Anonymous said...

The dog poems are lovely. I have a poem for Veteran's Day:

Elaine Magliaro said...

Thanks so much for doing the roundup. Love the dog poems!

At Wild Rose Reader, I have a poem titled "The Anthologist" for Lee Bennett Hopkins. I've been featuring Lee at my blog all week in preparation for our session Poets and Bloggers Unite at NCTE in two weeks.

I also have links to all of Tricia Stohr-Hunt's and Sylvia Vardell's NCTE Poetry Posts.

Melissa Wiley said...

Delightful dog poems! And I have to wave at April, author of two of my family's favorite books (It's Not My Turn to Look for Grandma and To Rabbittown). Hi there!

I'm in today with some sound advice from Sara Teasdale and a new poem from me.

Thanks for hosting!

Greg Pincus said...


I'm up with a seasonal original:

Too Much, Too Soon

Thanks for hosting!!

Maria said...

Thanks for hosting this week-Poetry Friday is Delicious! Here is my link:

Elaine Magliaro said...

I'm a guest blogger at the blog of law professor and legal scholar Jonathan Turley this week. Today, my Turley blog post is titled Poetry, Politics, and War. It includes three poetry videos produced by the Favorite Poem Project. I selected videos with poems about politics, war, and the Vietnam War honor of Veterans Day.

Charles Ghigna said...

Echoes from a whippoorwill at

Peek inside The Art Gallery at

Sylvia Vardell said...

Thanks for hosting this week! I've posted a third installment in my look at poet Pat Mora and her work as part of a project to make our NCTE conference presentation (Nov. 19) accessible to all. Comments welcome!

Sylvia Vardell said...

oops-- forgot my link:


Liz in Ink said...

Oh! Bea looks like my childhood dog Sage! How lovely...

I posted about swimming and writing and sticking with it today:

Unknown said...

The love in those dog poems made me smile. Knowing a dog enriches our lives so much.

On the Squat All Blog I share two translations of one poem by Shuntaro Tanikawa. Loneliness or Solitude? Which version do you like?

I'm Blythe.

Karen Edmisten said...

Great dog poems!

And your Bea's sweet face looks so much like my dog's! Mine is a border collie/blue heeler mix. Bushier tail and mostly black body, but oh, that face! :) Same speckles. So cute.

Can't resist sharing a picture of her.

I'm in this week with "In the Middle" by Barbara Crooker. It's here.

Thanks for hosting!

Anastasia Suen said...

Thanks for hosting today. I'm sharing the picture book poem, I’m a Truck Driver by Jonathan London (Author) and David Parkins (Illustrator), a fun book for little boys how love BIG machines!

Jeni said...

I love these poems! In "What Is She?", I especially like the lines, "she plops to the ground, tail a metronome, waits for the signal it’s okay to play, takes the first step in the introduction dance..." In "Halloween at the Dog Park," the lines, "Probably not a parolee. Still" made me grin.

I've written an original poem, "When Pigs Fly," that was inspired by a photo that Laura Salas posted on her blog yesterday:

Thank you for sharing! Happy Friday!

david elzey said...

checking in after a distracting but otherwise productive morning. poem is a bit of an update on "for he's a jolly good fellow."

i've also got a "when pigs fly" poem up over at laura salas's place.

thanks for hosting.

Julie said...

Anticpating Veteran's Day, I posted a love poem written by Edward Thomas, a Welsh poet killed in WWI. You can read the poem over at The Drift Record

Anonymous said...

Love your dog poems and pics! I haven't been to Poetry Friday in a while, so I'm going to enjoy the many links and good conversation, and hope to be back again soon with a post of my own. Thanks for hosting!

p.s. my verification word below is "hiphangs" -- is this a reminder to put away the Halloween bowl?

Heidi Mordhorst said...

I love the idea that a stubborn streak is something visible on a dog, like speckles or spots--unless it's invisible in the dog dark. I agree, it's ESP!

I'm in today with fine example of "soscientry" and some Little Red Hen.

Caryl said...

Thank you for hosting today, and for posting those wonderful dog poems!

My kids and I just finished reading Runny Babbit so I couldn't resist posting some Shel Silverstein love today:

Janet Squires said...

Thanks for hosting.
My selection is 'Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving, written and illustrated by Dav Pilkey.

AnneShirley said...

I'm in at Everyday Readers/Writers Workshop with a poem (appropriately) about a teacher. It's 'Busy With the Short Teacher' written by New Zealander Janet Charman.

April Halprin Wayland said...

THANK YOU for hosting Poetry Friday, JoAnn, and for posting our poems and your speckled dog and how she "plows headfirst into each moment"...and love her in the snow!

(Why am I suddenly craving chocolate chip ice cream?)

And WHEW! So many poems, so little time! Lots of links to post!