I found
on the ground
a little blue egg.

On the egg
I found
a hole.

There is no bird
in the little blue egg.

I wonder
it’s gone.


In my favorite Calvin and Hobbes, Calvin digs a hole. He finds rocks, a root, and some grubs, announcing with delight, “There’s treasure everywhere!” I love that he thinks of these things as treasures, in part because I do too. These are exactly the kinds of treasures I look for when I go for walks. And every time I go out and look for them, I find them because Calvin’s right–there’s treasure everywhere.

When I was in Boyds Mill, PA for the Highlights Foundation workshop last week, I found this egg outside the door of my cabin.

I’ve broken some poetry “rules” with this poem. I’ve set up a bit of a pattern in the first two stanzas, but I don’t follow the pattern throughout. Also, though it’s a poem for young readers and has a strong meter, it doesn’t rhyme. I tried many drafts of this poem, following the usual rules, but I kept coming back to this version, which seems to sing the right song for this slightly sad and mysterious egg.

What treasures are outside your door?

For more Poetry Friday visit Betsy at Teaching Young Writers.

(c) Elizabeth Steinglass, 2013, all rights reserved










This week I was lucky enough to sneak away for a few days of eating, sleeping, and breathing poetry at The Poet’s Poetry Workshop at the Highlights Foundation. What a treat to leave the usual chores and responsibilities behind and just focus on poetry. Our instructor Rebecca Kai Dotlich shared her wisdom and her library, guided us through many creative exercises, and facilitated endless critique sessions. My fellow students brought a huge range of experiences and talents to the table, but we all shared a passion for poetry, a desire to improve, and a genuine interest in supporting one another. Rebecca Davis, the editor-at-large for WordSong visited, and we even snuck in a skype session with Lee Bennett Hopkins, who advised us to write from the gut and from the heart. Today I am feeling grateful, exhausted, and full.

I got really fabulous answers to last week’s questions (and I will provide some kind of summary when I get a chance) so I’d like to ask another question this week:

Where do you go—what workshops, retreats, conferences, etc.—when you want to get away, get inspired, and focus on the craft of writing poetry?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.

For more Poetry Friday and other delectable treats visit Jama Rattigan.











pay dirt—
under the roses
a soccer ball


late at night—
a cricket sings
in the lizard’s cage


© Elizabeth Steinglass, 2013, all rights reserved


Ever since I started this blog, I’ve had two recurrent questions: Who is my audience? And why do I do it? It’s been a year and a half now, and I’m still not sure I have any good answers. Am I writing for poets, teachers, kids, friends? Is my goal to write more, share more, promote more, connect more?

I’m the kind of person who likes to talk through questions like these. So, fellow poet bloggers, I ask you:

1. Who is the audience for your blog?

2. Why do you blog?

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

Hachiya persimmons by Downtowngal

Hachiya persimmons by Downtowngal











Wild persimmons,
The mother eating
The bitter parts.




Along with Basho, Buson, and Shiki, Issa (1763-1827) is considered one of the four masters of Japanese haiku. Issa lived a particularly tragic life, losing his mother at age three, his inheritance and home after the death of his father, the wife he adored and their three children, all very early in their lives. To learn more about Issa and his poetry,
I recommend Anita Virgil’s discussion of his life and work in episode 16 of Haiku Chronicles.


Happy Mother’s Day











Garden Party

Weeping willow wears a gown
Of leafy lace that sweeps the ground.
Under her skirt we blow grass horns
And watch the daisies dance a round.

(c) Elizabeth Steinglass, 2013, all rights reserved


Welcome Poetry Friday visitors. Please join the party
by leaving your links in the comments. I’ll come by later
and add them to my post.

Happy Poetry Friday!


Here’s today’s round-up:

Looking for something rhyming and funny? See Jeff at NC Teacher Stuff whose colleague Wayne Leonard made a short video in response to a student challenge.

During National Poetry Month Laura Salas was so busy with her poem starter videos and other commitments, she missed out on other blogs. This Friday she’s heading over to Jama Rattigan’s list of Poetry Month celebrations. She’s also wondering what Poetry Month blogs we particularly enjoyed visiting.

At Random Noodling Diane is taking a breath after National Poetry Month and sharing a favorite cat poem by Denise Levertov.

At Kurious Kitty Diane shares “I Left My Head” by Lilian Moore, a poem which may speak both to the younger and the older crowd, and probably quite a few in the middle.

Diane has an explosive quote by Lilian Moore at at KK’s Kwotes.

Author Amok, Laura Shovan has been working with third graders writing scientific Fibonacci poems. Today she shares a couple of her students’ poems and her lesson plans.

Bridget at Wee Words for Wee Ones has an original foggy day, dog walking poem.

At Crackles of Speech Steven Withrow has an original poem about the lion who guards “The Library Steps.”

Robyn Hood Black has some laugh-out-loud student limericks from the Fair Street School at Life on the Deckle Edge.

In the mood for something odd? Myra has Tim Burton’s Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy at Gathering Books.

Congratulations to Linda who is celebrating her 500th post at TeacherDance! This week she’s taking time to reflect on the important things about blogging. She also shares “The Seven of Pentacles” by Marge Piercy.

Charles Gingha, aka Father Goose, is celebrating May with his original poem “Happy Birthday, May!”

Renee LaTulippe at No Water River has two posts to share this morning:

The first stars Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, who comes out of her enchanted forest to share “Puff,” a poem from her new book Forest Has a Song.

The second is a poetry video and a video interview with the beloved poet and anthologist, Lee Bennett Hopkins.

Matt Forrest Esenwine at Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme seems to have a touch of spring fever. This morning he shares an original poem, “Wildflowers, for Jane.” Who’s Jane? Jane Yolen, of course!

Tabatha Yeatts at The Opposite of Indifference shares poems from Poetry Out Loud, the amazing Nation Recitation Contest.

Mary Lee Hahn is also sharing poems about cats and has a link to even more cat poems at A Year of Reading.

Heidi Mordhorst has some really lovely poems by her kindergarten students, the Mighty Minnows, at My Juicy Little Universe.

Margaret at Reflections on the Teche has been reading I Love You the Purplest by Barbara M. Joosse with her students and working with them to write Mother’s Day poems. I know some moms who are going to get really special gifts this year.

Now that National Poetry Month is over, it’s time for Get Caught Reading! Kick off this next celebration At Reading to the Core with Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Picture-books in Winter.”

Before heading to the ocean on the 8th grade retreat, Ruth at There is no such thing as a God-forsaken town posted Jack Spicer’s “Any fool can get into an ocean…”

At Used Books in Class you will find a touching post about the impossibility of repaying mothers and Billy Collins’s poem, “The Lanyard.”

This week Irene Latham shares answers to questions such as “Why is poetry important?” and “Where do poems come from?

Irene has also posted the complete 2013 Kidlitosphere Progressive Poem. It’s quite a ride.

Betsy at Teaching Young Writers shares an original poem, “Winter Memories,” and a link to #chalkabration celebrations from the week. If you have a moment and can visit it was a dusty good time.

At Inside the Dog Steve Peterson shares an original haibun about fly fishing that was inspired by Mary Lee’s April poetry challenge.

Capping off National Poetry Month, Penny Klosterman, a teacher for 26 years, shares an extensive Poetry Resource page for teachers.

Donna at Mainely Write has four different versions of her poem, “Robin’s Proclamation.” Which do you prefer?

Doraine Bennett explores sestinas at DoriReads.

Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong are already thinking about summer. Today at the Poetry Friday Anthology blog they are sharing Debbie Levy’s poem “My Best Friend is Leaving.” And at the Poetry Friday Anthology for Middle School blog they have a poem movie by Phyllis Yarbro, featuring Marilyn Singer’s poem, “Body Art.”

Amy Merrill at Mrs. Merrill’s Book Break pairs poetry and origami (thanks to Kristine O’Connell George!).

Today at The Writer’s Whimsy Tamera Will Wissinger is  celebrating poets and National Poetry Month with a tercet epigram and also recapping her April Poetry activities.

At Wild Rose Reader Elaine has an original poem titled “Puddle Muddle” and announces the winner of “Puddle Wonderful: Poems to Welcome Spring.”

Becky Shillington discusses ekphrastic poetry and shares an original poem “Hope.”

Though it’s still snowing in Minnesota, Jill at Orange Marmalade is thinking spring and shares a hopeful poem about seeds from The Book of The Seasons: An Anthology by Eve Garnett.

At Bildungsroman, Little Willow shares the opening of Eva of the Farm, a verse novel by Dia Calhoun.

Today’s Little Ditty features “Tuesday’s Miracle” a celebration of spring and babies by Michelle H. Barnes.

Ms. Mac has more than 98 reasons to celebrate student work at Check it Out!

Readertotz has a wonderful rhyming board book “Tea Time” by Karen Rostoker-Gruber.

At On Point Lorie Ann Grover has a haiku entitled “Triangle Dresses.” Where have you seen ladies in triangle dresses?

David Elzey is in with his 30th and final Pulitzer Remix post. To celebrate National Poetry Month, he’s been extracting poems from “The Stories of John Cheever.” This week he has a stunning poem from the story “The Enormous Radio.”

Janet Squires at All About the Books shares Dogku by Andrew Clements, illustrated by Tim Bowers.