2012 Poetry Potluck Archive


1. April Pulley Sayre:  “Vegetable Poetry,” “U.S. 31 Thoughts,” Waldorf Salad

2. Mary Quattlebaum:  “Recipe for a Party,” Pirate Pie

3. Helen Frost:  “Awake,” Grandma Viney’s Oatmeal Bread

4. Linda Ashman:  “Catastrophic Coco,” Orzo with Spinach, Feta and Olives

5. Gail Gerwin:  “With or Without Rice, A Kitchen Ballet,” Cele Stern Fishman’s Stuffed Cabbage

6. Martha Calderaro:  “Special Delivery,” Blueberry Muffins

7. Kathi Appelt:  “Pecan Pie,” Southern Pecan Pie

8. Robyn Hood Black:  “Spooky Brew in Black and White,” Oatmeal Jam(a) Bars

9. Charles Waters:  “Santa Fe Chili,” Santa Fe Black Bean Chili

10. Adele Kenny:  “Chosen Ghosts,” Staffordshire Irish Stew

11. Linda Baie:  “Grandmother’s Biscuits,” Country-Fresh Biscuits

12. Lesa Medley:  “The Winds of Change,” Asparagus Pasta

13. Leslie Muir:  “Witch’s Jambalaya,” Witch’s Jambalaya

14. Margarita Engle:  “Treasure,” Batido (Mango Smoothie)

15. Sondra Gash:  “Rugelah, 5 a.m.,” Apricot Rugelah

16. Doraine Bennett:  “The Lump in My Throat,” Easy Quiche

17. Janet Wong:  “Grandmother’s Almond Cookies”

18. Jill Corcoran:  “Dare to Dream,” Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

19. Lill Pluta:  “Lillian’s Pocket,” Pita Pocket Sandwiches

20. Heidi Bee Roemer:  “The Skater,” Vegetarian Lentil Soup

21. Lee Wardlaw:  “A Catku,” Kitty Litter Cake


♥ A permanent link to this menu can be found in the blog’s sidebar under “Archival Lists”


Copyright © 2012 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

2012 poetry potluck giveaway winner and one last poem

Cornelius with the new official Alphabet Soup cookie: Oatmeal Jama Bars.

Cornelius and I can’t and don’t want to believe the 2012 Alphabet Soup Poetry Potluck is over. *sniff sniff*

Could it be May already? How time flies when you’re nibbling on good poetry and noshing to the nines!

Oh, what a feast we had — scaling mountains, “borrowing” a mail truck, visiting Cuba, playing with pirates, going to camp. We spiced things up with hot chili, jambalaya and a spooky brew, and even celebrated Passover together. And how about all those wonderful personal stories — grandmas who baked bread, cookies, biscuits and pies? What could be better than a group of fun-loving poets sharing good memories and bits of family history we could all relate to?

Food is the great equalizer, allowing us to reach back in time, adopt new customs and cultures, and bond with others in unique ways. I thoroughly enjoyed all the poems and learning a wee bit more about each of the poets — the journalist in me always craves those wonderful backstories and I thank everyone for digging up those vintage photos and giving us a peek into your private worlds.

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lee wardlaw’s pawsome catku

#22 in the Poetry Potluck Series, celebrating National Poetry Month 2012.

Lee with Mai Tai, the shelter cat who inspired her award-winning picture book.


Please help me welcome the purrr-fect  guest to top off our Poetry Potluck: Lee Wardlaw, winner of the 2012 Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award for Won Ton: A Cat Tale Told in Haiku (Henry Holt, 2011)!!


*cheers, wild applause, Scharffen Berger 70% bittersweet chocolate for everyone*

Lee’s favorite!
Lee (age 6) with her first kitty, Pit-a-Pat.

We’re thrilled to congratulate Lee on receiving this prestigious award, the most recent in a steady stream of honors and flat out love for this touching story of an adopted shelter cat (2011 NYPL Best Books of the Year (Poetry), 2012 CCBC Best Children’s Books of the Year, 2012 ALSC Notable Children’s Books, 2011 SLJ and Washington Post Best Books of the Year, 2011 Cat Writers’ Association Muse Medallion (Children’s Books), 2012 Bank Street Best Books of the Year (Star for Outstanding Merit), and more). Totally pawsome!

You probably know that Won Ton is written in a series of senryu, which are similar in form to haiku, but focus on human (or in this case, feline) foibles. Lee’s “petku”capture the very essence of catness: regal, in-the-moment, independent yet loving. Seems that Lee, a card-carrying cat lover since childhood, was always fated to pen this yowly gem. I’m sure Mai Tai wouldn’t have had it any other way, and I’m happy to report a Won Ton sequel is in the works! ☺

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sunday bear: mary oliver from no voyage and other poems

“Eloise” by Barbara Wiltrout (vintage baby dress, antique cameo and beads, Spring bonnet, 1992)



A Dream of Trees
by Mary Oliver

There is a thing in me that dreamed of trees,
A quiet house, some green and modest acres
A little way from every troubling town,
A little way from factories, schools, laments.
I would have time, I thought, and time to spare,
With only streams and birds for company,
To build out of my life a few wild stanzas.
And then it came to me, that so was death,
A little way away from everywhere.

There is a thing in me still dreams of trees.
But let it go. Homesick for moderation,
Half the world’s artists shrink or fall away.
If any find solution, let him tell it.
Meanwhile I bend my heart toward lamentation
Where, as the times implore our true involvement,
The blades of every crisis point the way.

I would it were not so, but so it is.
Who ever made music of a mild day?

~ from No Voyage. and Other Poems (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 1965)


Last Week’s Door Prize Winners

♥ Declaration of Interdependence by Janet Wong: Libby from Libby’s Book Blog, Gail Gerwin, and Myra from Gathering Books ♥

♥ A Stick is an Excellent Thing by Marilyn Singer and LeUyen Pham: Leslie Muir ♥

♥ A Suitcase of Seaweed by Janet Wong: Katya from Write. Sketch. Repeat ♥

♥ Won Ton: A Cat Tale Told in Haiku by Lee Wardlaw and Eugene Yelchin: Candice Ransom from Under the Honeysuckle Vine

Congratulations to all the winners! Please send your snail mail address to: readermail (at) jamakimrattigan (dot) com.

A big thanks to everyone for commenting!


Still to Come:

  • April 30: Lee Wardlaw
  • May 2: Wrap Up and Potluck Giveaway Winner!


♥ Today’s Sunday Bear Hug is brought to you by Cornelius, who is busy making his own music (but wants you to send him a nice doughnut anyway).

((((((YOU))))))(((((CHOCOLATE DIPPED)))))))((((HUG)))))


Copyright © 2012 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

friday feast: heidi roemer in good form

#21 in the Poetry Potluck Series, celebrating National Poetry Month 2012.


Lace up your skates and make way: Heidi Bee Roemer is here!

There’s nothing like having a party guest gleefully glide into your kitchen with a big smile, a cool poem, and a pot of soup! And this girl knows how to party!

Heidi’s critically acclaimed debut picture book, Come to My Party (Henry Holt, 2004), is a jubilant montage of rollicky-fun shape poems, with words curving and careening and wiggling and drifting and see-sawing across the pages —  a perfect reflection of Heidi herself, who’s a nature-lovin’, rock climbin’, kick boxin’ children’s author always on the move. Zip, Pump, Fly!  I’m giddy with excitement that Heidi decided to come to our party today!

She’s brought an ice skating poem that proves she’s just as agile and graceful on the page as she is in the rink. She was also the perfect person to co-edit an upcoming sports-themed poetry anthology. But I’ll let her tell you more about that project after serving up her poem.

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