Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Postcards, Batch Three

True or False
John Ciardi

Real emeralds are worth more than synthetics
but the only way to tell one from the other
is to heat them to a stated temperature,
then tap. When it's done properly
the real one shatters.
I have no emeralds.
I was told this about them by a woman
who said someone had told her: True or false,
I have held my own palmful of bright breakage
from a truth too late. I know the principle.

Elementary School Poems

Introducing....the second half of our PPP-POP! (Yes, PPP-POP = Public Poetry Project - Pass on Poetry, a very alliterative phrase). This week, we will go forth into two (thus far) Champaign elementary schools, Kenwood and Bottenfield, and have third and fourth graders "capture the essence" of the following poems with art. We hope we can eventually display this art in local libraries.

Today I Touched the Buffalobster
Kenn Nesbitt

Today I touched the buffalobster
and the goldfishark,
the eagleopard, ocelotter,
and the weaselark.

I fed the frogorilla
and I felt the reindeerat.
I prodded the piguana
and I scratched the alpacat.

I gazed at the gazellephant.
I gawked at the gooseal.
I caught the cockroachimpanzeebra
and the bumblebeel.

I pet the parroturtle,
and the pelicangaroo.
It's freaky, but it's fun here
at the Mutant Petting Zoo.


Carl Sandburg

The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.

Postcards, Batch Two

Love Poem
Ron Padgett

We have plenty of matches in our house.
We keep them on hand always.
Currently our favorite brand is Ohio Blue Tip,
though we used to prefer Diamond brand.
That was before we discovered Ohio Blue Tip matches.
They are excellently packaged, sturdy
little boxes with dark and light blue and white labels
with words lettered on the shape of a megaphone,
as if to say even louder to the world,
"Here is the most beautiful match in the world,
its one and a half inch soft pine stem capped
by a grainy dark purple head, so sober and furious
and stubbornly ready to burst into flame,
lighting, perhaps, the cigarette of the woman you love,
for the first time, and it was never really the same
after that. All this will we give you."
That is what you gave me, I
became the cigarette and you the match, or I
the match and you the cigarette, blazing
with kisses that smolder toward heaven.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Pass On Poetry Publicly with Postcards

Here is a sample of one of the first postcards we distributed. Please comment with suggestions!

Saturday, May 1, 2010


Hello world,

Pass On Poetry has two main components. Our first goal is the spreading of poetry through postcards, which we will distribute and encourage people to mail and comment on. The second is the spread of poetry to elementary school students. Check back for updates and poem samples!