SOLSC18 16/31: Poetry Friday, Naomi Shihab Nye Edition

JRM sol

Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for holding space for us to sharing our writing

every day in March.

poetryfridayThank you  Linda at TeacherDance for hosting Poetry Friday today.

I am spending the weekend studying the work of Naomi Shihab Nye in preparation of her Arbuthnot Honor Lecture in April at Western Washington University.  Registration is HERE.

Naomi Shihab Nye gave permission to use ten poems from her book, A MAZE ME: Poems for Girls, to create poetry collages (another thing I’ll be creating this weekend.)  Today I’m sharing one poem from which I borrow two lines to create a couple of Golden Shovel poems which has been the focus this month at Today’s Little Ditty.


by Naomi Shihab Nye

They said something mean about me
and didn’t notice it was mean.

So my heart wandered
into the rainy night without them
and found a canopy
to hide under.

My eyes started
seeing through things.
Like gauze.
Old self through new self.
My flexible body
went backwards
and forwards
in time.

It’s hard to describe but true:
I grew another head
with better ideas
inside my old head.

Poem copyright ©2005 by Naomi Shihab Nye

My Golden Shovel response:

Suppose they
handed out an invitation. It said,
Meet us and bring something
old. One sock? A tattered mean
note from grade school? What about
that mirror which you stole from me?

© jone rush macculloch

the moon set at low tide, so
I walked along the beach with my
dog. Followed the path of the heart
and watched as morning wandered.

© jone rush macculloch


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15 Responses to SOLSC18 16/31: Poetry Friday, Naomi Shihab Nye Edition

  1. Looks like I have another book to add to my list… A Maze Me. The golden shovel form seems so challenging, yet I’ve now seen several that are so good. Such a clever bunch, these Slicers!

  2. maryleehahn says:

    Lucky you to get to hear the Arbuthnot Lecture!!

  3. Kay Mcgriff says:

    Enjoy listening to and learning from Nye at the lecture. I wish I were close enough to sign up and go, but I hope to hear about it from you afterwords. Nye’s poem you share is beautiiful,, and I like what you have done with the Golden Shovel poems. I love reading them, but find them quite a challenge to write.

  4. Naomi’s poem is wonderful, I love these lines in it,
    “So my heart wandered
    into the rainy night without them
    and found a canopy
    to hide under.”

    “It’s hard to describe but true:
    I grew another head
    with better ideas
    inside my old head.”

    Love your responding golden shovels too, and your closing line,
    ” Followed the path of the heart
    and watched as morning wandered.”

    And how exciting to be attending her conference, you’ll have to fill us in. Thanks!

  5. Tabatha says:

    Fascinated by the idea of a stolen mirror. Very cool poems, Jone! Also, poetry collages sound neat. Looking forward to hearing more later!

  6. Tara Smith says:

    I love the inventiveness of your response poems, Jone. Enjoy the workshop!

  7. Cathy M says:

    I’m still learning about the Golden Shovel poems and appreciated the two that you shared in your post. I have yet to give one a try, but I’m thinking it might be time.

  8. What a wonderful way to wander through Naomi Shihab Nye’s poem and explore it by writing your own golden shovel responses. I am downright amazed by those of you who take to this form like a fish to water! I’m envious that you’ll be able to hear her speak in person.

  9. cvarsalona says:

    Jone, enjoy your conference. I can’t wait to hear more. I also love Nye’s book, Amaze Me, and will share it again at the upcoming PD I will deliver. I think I will also share your golden shovel poems (which are beautiful stand alones) as what can follow from reading the book. I am still thinking winter as I design my gallery but can you save your last poem for either the spring or summer gallery?

  10. lindabaie says:

    I love Nye’s book Amaze Me, so beautiful to put into a student’s or teacher’s hands! You’ve written two wonderful ones from her lines, Jone, both so full of feelings, sorrow and celebration. How wonderful that you get to see that lecture!

  11. katswhiskers says:

    There are a few golden shovels coming out this round – and not all themed to the TLD challenge. They’re rewarding to write! (I wrote one last night, for my Antarctic WIP.) I’m still loving the way the form shapes your words in unexpected ways.

  12. Irene Latham says:

    Oh I WISH I could attend that lecture! Enjoy it some for me, okay? And I love your poems. That wandering morning is brilliant! xo

  13. carwilc says:

    Naomi Shihab Nye was one of the first poets I loved, as I was wandering my way into a life of poetry. Her work always evokes so many memories, and so much emotion. I love that it evoked two new, and very different poems for you. I read your poem and immediately decided I had to try a golden shovel poem with Ralph Fletcher’s “Daffodils.” Not done yet, but maybe later today????

  14. margaretsmn says:

    Your golden shovel poems are great responses to Naomi’s poem. I love A Maze Me. One of my favorite poetry books to share with students and to read and re-read.

  15. The golden shovel is fascinating to mr now since Alice Nine first revealed it to me. I was struggling with the shovel. Thanks for revealing how you mined this beautiful poem.

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