Tuesday, May 10, 2011

POETRY MONTH (late)

          Well, April was poetry month.  I displayed about 10 awesome and varied books on poetry right where the students sit at the computers, but none of them checked out. Either kids don't dig poetry anymore, or else there's just too much going on at school right now with all the state testing over the past few weeks. There was a TON of fiction checking out in April, but not poetry. At least I tried.
          I put up a giant rainbow-trimmed sign on the main bulletin board stating that it was POETRY MONTH. In one of my black frames I posted an excerpt from Maya Angelou's "Still I Rise," with a special banner dedicating it to all the Library staff in our school district because we're all feeling downtrodden and unappreciated from the budget cuts.  Here's part of the excerpt:

"Still I Rise" (excerpt)

Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.

Did you want to see me broken?

Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops.
Weakened by my soulful cries.

          In the other black frame I put this fascinatingly strange poem by Charles Simic:

“The School Of Metaphysics”

Executioner happy to explain
How his wristwatch works
As he shadows me on the street.
I call him that because he is grim and officious
And wears black.

The clock on the church tower
Had stopped at five to eleven.
The morning newspapers had no date.
The gray building on the corner
Could've been a state pen,

And then he showed up with his watch,
Whose Gothic numerals
And the absence of hands
He wanted me to understand
Right then and there.

Clip-art cuckoo clocks and clock gears, with some question marks to indicate it's freeeaky, man.

1 comment:

  1. I think it must be the testing, Tommy. I can't imagine why kids wouldn't like poetry now. Are there any books in your library with emo poems? Maybe that's the kind of poetry they'd like.

    I read some of Shel Silverstein's poems at my local school today. I have a three-day visit there this week. Even adults still love Silverstein. It was great watching the kids' reactions.

    That's really cool that you framed that Maya Angelou excerpt and the Metaphysics poem. I bet they look great hanging on the wall.

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