Happy February, everyone. This week, we kicked off my annual poem project, which has moved over to Facebook.
This year’s theme is #10FoundWords. We have a daily news story, speech, or current event selected by a project member. That person chooses 10 words from the news source, which makes up our word bank for the day.
Because we’re all writing with the same daily prompts, my favorite part of the project is reading the response poems. I notice the ways our writing overlaps, and cheer people on when their poems are unexpected, when there’s an innovation. (You can still join the project. Leave a note in the comments if you’d like to give it a try.)
Speaking of news — scroll to the bottom of the page for two announcements: an event with me and YA author Heidi Heilig, and a book giveaway.
Here’s one of my own poems, written as a warm-up exercise.
By Laura Shovan
Remember learning long division?
This was long ago, 20th Century math.
Historical stuff. We’re talking
a solid wall between two different numbers.
The smaller number makes its appeal.
“Let me inside. It’s cold.
I’m suffering out here.”
The wall stays up because
that’s how division has always
been calculated. But the big number
is overcome with a generous spirit.
It sneaks the shivering digits inside,
counts how many will fit.
Soon, there are numbers
climbing on the roof, thankful numbers
It’s a kind of freedom,
the way they gather on all sides
of the wall, which looks thinner,
less substantial, surrounded
by the orderly many.
Still here? Great! Thanks for sticking with me. I’ve got two announcements.
Announcement #1: On February 8, I’m hosting YA author Heidi Heilig (THE GIRL FROM EVERYWHERE) as part of the Master Storytellers series run by the Ivy Bookshop. Join me and Heidi as we discuss the broad appeal of young adult fiction. You can find details and RSVP here. If you’re in town for AWP, it’s a short trip up to Baltimore. Hope to see you there.
Announcement #2: Foundry Media is giving away four copies of THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY on Goodreads. Sign up here to join the giveaway.
Announcement #3: (When I said “two announcements,” I was simply stating an alternate fact.) I’m excited to share that THE LAST FIFTH GRADE is a finalist for a Pennsylvania Young Readers’ Choice Award!