Thursday, October 6, 2011

Valuable By-product - PaLA Conference 2011

These past four days have been filled to the brim with ideas & activities, friends & acquaintances (new & old), work & fun. Having attended a conference for librarians and library support staff in the place of our Children's Librarian, I felt it behooved me to attend seminars she might have done. A fun task.

This year fully a third of the conference sessions seemed to focus on Young Adults and / or Poetry. Since I am interested in both... since I was in a sense the proxy for the Children's Librarian... and since I write poetry ...I reaped a harvest of wonderful YA program ideas and produced several poems during poetry sessions. 

The program ideas will be written about and given to Miss Laura (our Children's Librarian) within the next few days.

The poetry - I will reproduce here. I hope you enjoy these "quickie poems", these workshop products.

The first poem was based on an "ice breaker" opening for a creative writing workshop. Describe something you like and something you dislike. Luckily I was not called upon to contribute because I only came up with something I like. We were supposed to use a description that would explain the like or dislike. 

Here is my "like" - 

I like waking up to a waking morning.
The sun slowly opening its eye, waking the sky;
The birds waking in the predawn dimness.
I lie in bed, eyes closed, listening to the birds -
to their chittering and peeping in near darkness.
And as the sky grows lighter in the waking morn,
these feathered friends on tree limb and power line
raise their voices, intensifying, as the sun rises.
The second poem came from an exercise involving listening to a song from someone's iPod, scribbling down some of the lyrics, then rearranging the words to make a new poem. The song we used? "Memories Are Made of This" sung by Dean Martin. The words we heard: "Take one fresh and tender kiss / Add one night of stolen bliss / One girl, one boy, some grief, some joy... / Memories are made of this."
Here's my poem - 

Stolen Memories

Stolen memories
A boy's joy
A girl's grief
Stolen bliss

Concrete Leaves
The third poem was a 
concrete poem exercise. 
As we had walked inside 
the door of the room, 
we were told to choose a paper 
with a drawing on it, 
The drawings were 
mostly just outlines of things 
such as an apple, or a hand 
or a tree or a doorway. 
I chose a tree. 
I am sure you can see 
what a concrete poem is,
but let me say that we were told 
to write something either inside or 
around the outside of the drawing.
I have redrawn the tree and 
colored it in so it is no longer an outline.
I thought it would look prettier in color.
The fourth poem I wrote was a changed perspective or alternate version / ending to an established story - in our case the established story was a fairytale. I chose Jack and the Beanstalk. We were only given five minutes to create our poem.
Here it is - 

Rescued Harp?

Day in and day out
I played and sang on command.
Harp! Music!
Harp! A Drinking Song!
I feared the Giant hand -
the rough Giant hand.
I learned lullabies.
I lulled the Giant into slumber.
I longed to slip away -
away from the Giant Autocrat.
Then came Jack.
I helped Jack.
And Jack rescued me -
or so I thought.
For I still hear:
Harp! Music!
Harp! A Drinking Song!
I play and sing on command
day in and day out.

- - mARTa weller, October 2011

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