Wednesday, January 29, 2014

BLOG TOUR: Joan Bransfield Graham's New Book & Poetry Exercise!--Wednesday Writers' Workout

Howdy, Campers!

We're taking a breaking from HATCHing today--i.e.,celebrating the arrival of Jill Esbaum's newest book, I HATCHED! (here and here so far), but the contest to win this remarkable rhyming picture book by our very own Jill doesn't end until January 31st, so get your tail feathers on and enter here!

Today, I'm excited that TeachingAuthors is one of two mid-week stops on Joan Bransfield Graham's blog tour (the other stop today is at Renee LaTulippe's terrific No Water River) introducing Joan's new poetry book...AND since it's Wednesday, we welcome her as our very own personal trainer for today's Writing Workout.

This is my friend, the effervescent, inventive and truly original author and thinker, Joan Bransfield Graham

Joan is an award-winning poet who can't STOP writing poetry. She has files and piles of poems, which have been featured in anthologies, magazines, textbooks, and on CDs. She likes to think "outside the page" because poetry is "everywhere." Her books SPLISH SPLASH and FLICKER FLASH--shape poems about water and light--were both chosen as School Library Journal Best Books of the Year and NCTE Notables, among many other honors, and have been described as "ingenious," "wonderfully evocative," and "stunningly delicious." She loves photography, art, traveling and lives not-too-far from me in Los Angeles, CA.

 Celebrating its 20th Birthday!

Celebrating its 15th Birthday!

Just YESTERDAY, Joan's newest book--The Poem That Will  Not End: Fun with Poetic Forms and Voices--was published! This fabulous book, illustrated by Kyrsten Brooker, was recently featured in an article called "A Year for Poetry" . . . "A picture book which may have language arts teachers doing a happy dance." – Kirkus Reviews

As Joan describes it, this book is the opposite of writer's block--Ryan O'Brian can't STOP writing poetry and does so in many unusual ways.  There is a book-length story poem, 22 poems embedded in the artwork, and a three-page glossary done as Ryan's notebook, describing the 15 poetic forms and five voices used. (Note: The publisher will provide a Teacher's Guide for this book with ties to the Common Core. I'll post the link as soon as I get that information.) 

Joan is truly a TeachingAuthor--her degree in Elementary Education is from Rowan University in NJ.  She taught 2nd Grade in New Jersey, did substitute teaching for grades 1 - 8 in Kentucky, and taught 4th and 5th Grade Gifted classes in California.  She is always teaching during her school visits, doing what she enjoys most--encouraging students to use their imagination and creativity.

And now, without further ado, here's Joan's WWW Olympic Writing Challenge:
JOAN: With the Winter Olympics fast approaching (Feb.7th in Sochi, Russia), April and I are going to turn writing into an Olympic sport--and we want you on our team!  Among the poems in my new book, THE POEM THAT WILL NOT END:  Fun with Poetic Forms and Voices, is a bike poem.  In this mask poem, the bike "speaks" for itself:

Step on—
I am wheels
and gears,
I am speed.
I will heed
your slightest

I will take you
I am wind
in your hair,
I am things
I’m the road
ahead . . . .

--© Joan Bransfield Graham

illustration by Kyrsten Brooker

In this Olympic Writing Challenge we ask you to see the Games through the "eyes" of a piece of sporting equipment--give it a voice--and write your own mask poem

What will you be--an ice hockey helmet, ski poles, ice skates or...? 

Share your mask poems with a loved one...and with us in the comments section below--we want to hear them!

And to double your pleasure, snowboard over to Renee LaTulippe's No Water River blog and transform your poem into an apostrophe poem (in which the poet addresses a non-living or non-human being)!

And BTW--did you know that Renee lives in Italy?  So, this "doubleheader" poetry prompt is an international event! Work out those mental muscles and Go for the Gold!

Thank you so much for sharing this energizing WWW with us, Joan!

Links to Joan Bransfield Graham's Grand Blog Tour 2014:
Monday, Jan. 27--Poetry for Children--Dr. Sylvia Vardell, Texas Woman's University, Denton, TX, a behind-the-scenes look,
Tuesday, Jan. 28--Tales from the Rushmore Kid--Tina Nichols Coury, editor interview with Melanie Kroupa,
Wednesday, Jan. 29--Double Olympic Poetry Challenge--an international event!
No Water River--Renee LaTulippe (in Italy--using "Soccer Ball" as a prompt, write an apostrophe poem for a piece of Olympic sporting equipment),
Teaching Authors--Six Authors Who Also Teach--(USA--using "Bike" as a prompt, write a mask poem for the same sports item--skis, skates, etc.)
Thursday, Jan. 30--The Miss Rumphius Effect--Dr. Tricia Stohr-Hunt, University of Richmond, Richmond, VA,
Friday, Jan. 31--Jama's Alphabet Soup--Jama Kim Rattigan--review of book, potato recipe, plus write "food couplet" (a la "Couplet for French Fries") to be entered into giveaway
*  *  * 
Remember to enter our Book Giveaway of Jill Esbaum's
I HATCHED!--you have until Friday, January 31st!

posted with love by April Halprin Wayland with help from the fairies and the killdeer


Linda B said...

The book looks awesome! I'm in the midst of collecting some books for a classroom to help them find ideas for poetry, & this will be terrific. I love mask poems, so while I'll keep working, here's a start!

Ski Jump

I’m anticipating,
will soon be celebrating
skiers’ glide.

I’m way up high
skiers’ll touch the sky-
awesome ride.

I can only imagine the jump.
But it’s an adrenalin pump
to feel them slide.
Linda Baie © All Rights Reserved

Carmela Martino said...

Thanks for this TERRIFIC post, April and Joan. And Linda, I LOVE your poem. Thanks so much for sharing it.

Esther Hershenhorn said...

Congrats on your newest book, Joan!
I'll be sure to share this title with teachers and young writers.
And, thanks for sharing such a fun - and timely - WWW.

April Halprin Wayland said...

Linda ~ I love your poem! It's got me in the ski competition watching mood. Thanks so much for sharing it with all of us!

Joan said...

April is a Gold Medal Girl, an amazing poet, and a dear friend. Thanks so much, April, for doing such a FABULOUS job with this! Hooray to Linda for joining the fun! In fact, Gold Medals and bouquets all around for "Team Teaching Authors"--April, Esther, Carmela, JoAnn, Mary Ann, & Jill!

Buffy Silverman said...

I landed here by way of Italy (Renee's post) and was happy to read another poem from Joan's book. Congratulations Joan (again) and thanks for the fun post, April.

It was a fun exercise to modify the apostrophe poem I wrote for Renee's site into a mask poem:

Farewell to my Flailing Skier

You strap me on your heavy feet,
We zip along
a slide-glide beat.

We zoom ahead! A faster clip!!
I slide! (you slip)
I glide! (you trip.)

I race away, alone. You’re stranded.
Left behind
(it’s where you landed.)

—Buffy Silverman, all rights reserved

Joan said...

Buffy, thanks for leaving behind great poems on both sites! You are now an "international athlete/poet"! April and I were in Myra Cohn Livingston's Poetry Master Class at UCLA together, and Myra always encouraged us to try out a variety of forms to see which was most effective.

Linda said...

My copy should arrive tomorrow. I can't wait! I'm also looking forward to the link to the Common Core. : )

Jill said...

Linda and Buffy: LOVE your poems! I won't be able to stop thinking about them while watching the jumpers and skier's. :)

Rosi said...

I've never written a mask poem before. This is a fun form.

Curling Stone

I like it when you hold me
and polish me with that warm cloth.
Why, why, why must you send me off
to slide down the cold, cold ice?
Wait! Wait! There are others in my path!
Ow! He wouldn't get out of my way!
It wasn't my fault!
Why is everyone cheering?
Accidents happen.

Anonymous said...

I posted an apostrophe poem over at No Water River. This blog tour has been all kinds of fun. I have really enjoyed hearing all about Joan and this wonderfully creative book. And the poems left in comments have entertained me this weekend!

April Halprin Wayland said...

Buffy and Rosi--it sure makes one look at the world in a whole different way, eh? Thank you for sharing your poems.

Linda, Jill and Penny: thank you for coming by!

Charles Waters said...

There are swerves in my circular curves.
I’m a pentagon, hexagon that’s triangled
And mangled by all who want to play;
Somewhere in our world, this happens
Every day. When I’m caressed by a caring soul?
I still get tossed in the lion’s den.
I’ll be a grateful spotted orb when this
Never happens again.

I put up with so much stuff
Screaming fans, players guff
All because of me, a zebra
Colored orb, as you can see.
I’m an innocent party, I’d
Never hurt a soul, treating
Others with respect should
Ultimately be the goal.

(c) Charles Waters 2014 all rights reserved.

Joan said...

Charles, thanks for joining in and sharing your Olympic and poetic athleticism. I am happy to see that you have three poems in the latest PFA Anthology--congrats!