poetry friday roundup is here!

 

Welcome to Poetry Friday at Alphabet Soup!

Today, just for you — sip some tea, nibble on a macaron, and gently savor Charles Ghigna’s heartening and beautifully crafted reflections on creativity.

I am honored to share three poetic pieces from his new book, Dear Poet: Notes to a Young Writer (Resource Publications, 2019).

Described as, “A Poetic Journey into the Creative Process for Readers, Writers, Artists & Dreamers,” this collection of twenty-four spare, unadorned “word-gems” is an insightful gift to all creatives, offering both invaluable advice and spiritual nourishment.

As I enter my seventh decade on this planet, I wonder what words of wisdom I might have written to the younger me. What treasured tidbits have I learned along the way? What could I leave in a letter to young artists and poets searching the world for advice, guidance, and inspiration.

The creative process is a mysterious one, muses can be fickle, and in endeavors where one’s reach almost always exceeds one’s grasp, the life of the artist can be daunting and lonely.

I have always believed that in a sense, you cannot actually “teach” someone how to write, just as you cannot teach someone how to think or how to feel. And while there are many helpful books about honing your craft with suggestions about form, structure, voice, etc., detailing the more technical aspects of writing, sometimes what a writer needs, or craves . . . are simple, enduring truths gleaned from years of experience.

As I read the short yet profound poems, I silently cheered in affirmation. Yes, trust your instincts, speak the truth in your heart, find your authentic voice, get out of your own way and let the work speak for itself. Only write if you must.

Dear Poet is like having a trusted friend nearby, reminding you of what is most important. Though the subtitle is, “Notes to a Young Writer,” these words are for everyone, no matter where you are on your creative journey. Aren’t all artists and writers eternally young (in a constant state of beginning)?

I’m pairing today’s poems with art created by Charles’s son Chip, who also lives and works in Homewood, Alabama. As you can see, artistic talent runs deep in this family (Charles’s wife Debra is also a poet).

Good things do come in small packages. Read these delectable nuggets slowly and ponder  . . . 🙂

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“Hang Onto Your Dreams” (acrylic on canvas)

 

XII.

A silent rhyme
upon the page
is what the poet gives,

gentle words
whispered in trust
to see if memory lives.

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“Raising the Moon” (acrylic on canvas)

 

XVII.

A poem
is a rising moon
shining on the sea,

an afterglow
of all you know,
of all your dreams set free.

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“Crimson Forest” (acrylic and gold leaf on canvas)

 

XXIV.

The answer
to the artist
comes quicker than a blink,

though the spark
of inspiration
is not what you might think.

The muse
is full of magic,
though her vision may be dim.

The artist
does not choose the work.
It is the work that chooses him.

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“Bear on a Bicycle”

 

Now, please leave your links with the dashing Mr. Linky below. Have fun visiting all the blogs serving up delectable poetic goodness this week!

 

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DEAR POET: Notes to a Young Writer
written by Charles Ghigna
published by Resource Publications, August 2019
Poetry Collection, 56 pp.

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“Autumn” (acrylic, gesso, book pages and leaves on canvas)

 

♥ For information about where you can purchase Chip Ghigna’s amazing art, please visit his Official Website.

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* Images posted by permission, copyright © 2019 Chip Ghigna. All rights reserved.

** Copyright © 2019 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

 

HotTEAs of Children’s Poetry: Charles Ghigna and Lee Bennett Hopkins

Double your oven mitts, double your fun! (A natty flame-proof suit wouldn’t hurt either.)

Charles Ghigna (“Father Goose”) is an award winning poet, author, speaker and nationally syndicated feature writer.
Tea time in his Alabama tree-house (photos by Debra Ghigna).

☕ Cuppa of Choice: “I love tea! I drink a cup of hot green tea nearly every day. One of my favorites is Uncle Lee’s 100% Organic Green Tea. I brew two tea bags in a cup of hot water and sometimes add a squeeze of lemon. I also love to play Tea Party on the porch with our four-year-old granddaughter, Charlotte Rose. She always makes sure I hold up my pinkie just right.” 😉

☕ Hot Off the Press: Springtime Weather Wonders Series (Hail to Spring!, Raindrops Fall All Around, Sunshine Brightens Springtime, A Windy Day in Spring (Picture Window Books, 2015).

☕ Visit Charles Ghigna’s Official Website

☕ ☕ ☕ Lovely poem Charles wrote for his wife (his favorite HotTEA):

 

TEA TIME

for Debra

Like tea bag paper,
gauzy and thin,
we steep in the dark
letting love in.

The longer we steep,
the stronger the brew;
tea party perfect,
in love with you.

~ copyright © Charles Ghigna. All rights reserved.

 

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Lee Bennett Hopkins is an award winning author, poet, editor, anthologist and the recipient of the Christopher Award and the University of Southern Mississippi’s Medallion for “lasting contributions to children’s literature.”
Tea Time at home in Cape Coral, Florida (photos by C. Egita).

☕ Cuppa of Choice: “Tea, a drink I adore . . . I like varied teas, but particularly Twinings of London Ceylon Orange Pekoe.”

☕ Hot Off the Press: Lullaby and Kisses Sweet: Poems to Love with Your Baby, illustrated by Alyssa Nassner (Abrams, 2015). 

☕ Visit Lee Bennett Hopkins’s Official Website

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♥ More HotTEAs of Children’s Poetry here.

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Copyright © 2015 Jama Rattigan of Jama’s Alphabet Soup. All rights reserved.

friday feast: the big cheese

“Wine and cheese are ageless companions, like aspirin and aches, or June and moon, or good people and noble ventures.” ~ M.F.K. Fisher

Mr. Charles Cheddar Ghigna, our own Eminent Cheese Poet

Was it G.K. Chesterton who said, “The poets have been mysteriously silent on the subject of cheese”?

Clearly he wasn’t up on his Canadian poets, or he would have sung the praises of one James McIntyre of Ingersoll, Ontario, who’s known far and wide as “the cheese poet.” Who could forget (even if they wanted to) McIntyre’s masterpiece, “Ode on the Mammoth Cheese Weighing Over 7,000 Pounds”?

If Chesterton had lived long enough, he would have drooled over Donald Hall’s “O Cheese,” which Diane Mayr shared at Random Noodling last year. “Cheeses that dance in the moonlight/cheeses that mingle with sausages” — who could resist such free-spirited, sociable chunks of goodness? And who, among us, could ever turn our backs on the steadfast comfort of homemade mac and cheese, the golden brown delights of a friendly grilled cheese sandwich, the pull-apart-melty-string gooeyness of mozzarella married to pizza crust?

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friday feast: two smooth talkers, a chunky hunk, and a hot salsa mama

Welcome to our Peanut Butter Poets Party!

Every Poetry Friday in November, we’re serving up creamy crunchy chewy peanut butter poems written by some of our favorite nut cases children’s poets and friends.

Today’s menu features four good-looking but sticky poets: Charles Ghigna, Matt Forrest Esenwine, David L. Harrison and Marilyn Singer.

The guys all love peanut butter but Marilyn doesn’t (gasp!). Don’t worry — what she doesn’t eat, she makes up for with fancy footwork and sassy swaying to that crazy Latin beat.

I call Charles and Matt the Peter Pan twins; they’re both into creamy and are oh-so-smooth with their rhythm and rhyme (get a grip; they may slide off your screen). David calls himself a “Jiffy chunky man.” See what happens when you have a choosy mom? You grow up to be a chunky hunk who knows how to cowboy up. I wonder if he’s found his elusive jelly yet?

Enjoy Our Daily Spread. Okay to read aloud with your mouth full.

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friday feast: peanut butter poems wanted!

 

Happy November!

It’s Peanut Butter Lover’s Month!

 

 

Not that I need an excuse to spread it on extra thick or anything. Why, just this morning I had a nice slice of lightly toasted multi-grain bread slathered with 365 All Natural Creamy Peanut Butter and Hawaiian Sun Guava Jelly. Don’t  you love the way peanut butter melts on warm toast, making you lick the corners of your mouth after biting into it? Mmmmmmm!

If I’m feeling extra naughty, I’ll forego the jelly and spread on some Nutella. Then there’s my peanut butter and apple mid-morning snack, the late afternoon Reese’s PB Cup or PB on celery pick-me-up. Sigh. I blame my addiction on my dad, who always seemed to be snacking on cocktail peanuts while I was growing up. Sound familiar?

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