Monday, October 31, 2016

teachers of gifted students test out writing animals poems at the berks county intermediate unit.

last week, i visited a networking group of teachers who work with gifted students across our region. colleen lennett of the berks county intermediate unit coordinated the event. she serves as the program administrator of the office of professional development and curriculum for the BCIU.

while at the BCIU, i walked these teachers through my animal poems workshop which i normally teach to children at elementary schools and parks. but fortunately for living meaning we all develop our own stories, experiences, and memories, and since our earth has a good amount of animals left on it, these lessons can be adapted and used with anyone at any age or grade level.

below, you can see scenes from the meeting and some poems which teachers wrote during the end of our time together. and several of the teachers braved up to read their poems across the expanse of the board room before leaving for the day. colleen lennett kindly contributed with some of the photography. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

language throwing at the SCORE small business expo in pottstown.

the pottstown SCORE chapter, recently re-named SCORE tricounty, had its second annual small business expo last thursday and nearly doubled the amount of vendors it had in its first year, as a point of great success.

brookside country club hosted the expo. this year the country club is celebrating a historic landmark in operating a century since it opened in 1916. i also quickly noticed that it has an eye-hugging view of brightest autumn days with the copper and deep sun-spent hues emanating from trees off past the golfing greens.

and being a part of this event as the only language thrower listed seemed like a good fit. i soon learned that websites are something a lot of small business owners need help with in terms of developing (non-boring) writing content before official launching efforts across modern interwebs.

i didn't have time to do as much community-wide photography as i normally would have because of having to be ms. marketing for the evening, but some great fellow vendors, across those i already knew and some who i met, were the peppermint stick candy store in boyertown, the pottstown family and home expo, custom print it in schwenksville, victory bank in limerick, the spring-ford chamber of commerce, and saint peter's bakery near the beloved waters where i take my young nieces rock-hopping in the warmer days of summer.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

poetry and the schuylkill river in pottstown in october.

since we're still doing our best to soak up and appreciate non-cold weather before the season takes a serious dive into chillier temperatures, my traveling poetry class spent a mid-october friday at our beloved somewhat hidden spot along the schuylkill river in pottstown.

and we were fortunate enough to have laura catalano visit us for the start of our class. she is the communications director for the schuylkill river national & state heritage area which has its office very close to where we meet when we're sitting by the water in this particular area.

we were also thrilled to have local retired art teacher arline christ join our class as a new student.

the photography below is grouped into sections. it is courtesy of laura catalano, then sam traten, and lastly me as the instructor. we had a lot of sun and shade blending across our faces and the leaves of the trees above this exact morning.



student barbara tucker brought along a poem which she crafted almost exclusively from pulling out noteable sections of language from newspaper articles referencing hurricane matthew. here is the poem.

tidbits from daily newspaper
by barbara tucker

North Carolina rising rivers pose mortal risk
                                                 valley below Wood Lake dam in danger of falling
 swollen Neuse river threatens         
                                                deadly aftermath of hurricane Matthew
“we’ve had too many deaths!”
                                                man says he’ll be applying for FEMA assistance
full scale evacuation from threatened places
                                                reinforced but still in danger of failing
once the water flows it’s too late      
                                                I’ve never seen this and I’m a water and sewer guy
aid begins to reach Haiti after storm
                                                tens of thousands of people… life is completely destroyed
cleared tree limbs from streets of Les Anglais
                                                scraps of wood to start rebuilding home
going days without food        
                                                “we’re looking out for each other.”
bottled water, bleach and other vital items from UK
                                                worsening shortages as prices jumped by as much as 25%  
80 to 100% of Les Cayes’ crops lost
                                                “crisis is not a strong enough word to describe it.”


and we enjoyed arugula, prosciutto, and burrata salad at the end. burrata is a form of mozzarella which is creamier in the middle. nommm and a half, agreed.

Monday, October 17, 2016

scrambled egg & tomato sandwich haiku.

what's wonderfully awkward, comes from gardens and hen houses, and also involves breadatarian aspects ?

a ridiculously large and perhaps slightly overfilled scrambled egg and tomato sandwich between two slices of toast is the answer, in this particular scenario.

last week, one of my traveling poetry class students gave me a freshly picked burpee's beefsteak tomato from his garden, even in this month of october. i decided to put it to good use by making a toasted scrambled egg and tomato sandwich as a reminder the kind which my mom often made when i was younger, before the days when i actually ate tomatoes myself.

my version is rather monstrous, though, and a bit difficult to eat, but it's very worth each clumsily-working bite. i also add pink salt to it instead of the typical white kind.

here is a haiku-ish ode to this sandwich.


a last savory
taste of summer sits between
toast. tomato. egg.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

candy shop haiku.

haiku are even more fun when candy is involved. at least that's a recent theory of mine.

the peppermint stick candy store joined boyertown in berks county in early 2015 and recently relocated to a larger storefront on the main street slightly across from the boyertown community library. the shop is also a great asset as a part of building a better boyertown in our area. it is curiously situated right smack next to a dentist's office. the new space is brighter, even more friendly with nostalgia-stirring persuasions, and it being bigger means more candy, thankfully. with a blend of modern and historic candy across the inventory, as well as ice cream and old-fashioned soda, if you have not checked it out yet, setting a date to get there is absolutely a must.

and now for a candy shop haiku.


penny candy, chalked 
prices paid in coins, the sweet,
the sour—zeal for tongues