Sunday Reading: Change, Illness, Poetry

It’s April now. Spring getting its rhythm. The cruelest month. National Poetry month. I’m leaning heavy into this embrace. — a project by Sam Levigne and Tega Brain

I’ve been following the work of Johanna Hedva for several years now and that’s what brought me to this project. They wrote an introduction, in a sense, and I found it to be really powerful and elegant and pointed and everything that I come to expect from their writing.

I Sit and Sew by Alice Moore Dunbar-Nelson & Poem of the Week: The Idler by Alice Dunbar Nelson

Alice Moore Dunbar Nelson was an American poet, playwright, journalist, social activist, and an early published diarist. Her work is largely about being Black in America, a woman, and colorism. She was part of the Harlem Renaissance. These two poems by her struck me as being really timely. Probably because many issues facing us then are still a problem today.

Sometimes A Wild God by Tom Hirons

I read this years ago and was reminded of it recently.  I love the atmosphere of it, the imagery, and the way it relishes bodies, cosmic and otherwise.

Opinion: This is not home schooling, distance learning, or online schooling. by Maureen Downey

“Stephanie Jones and Hilary Hughes are University of Georgia professors in the Department of Educational Theory and Practice and co-directors of the Red Clay Writing Project. They say something today that needs to be repeated daily like a mantra: What is happening is not home schooling. It is not distance learning. It is not online schooling.”

I really liked seeing this article because I see so many people trying to behave as though this should be a “normal” schooling period and that the only challenges are the “at home” or “distance” or “online” part, which is simply not true.

Some of the best online poetry, as read by actual poets. by John Freedman

A really good collection. If you’re trying to read poetry and feeling stymied by how to read it, a great way to address that is by listening to poets read poems.

A Change in Lesson Plans: Homeschooling in a Pandemic by Emily Raboteau

I haven’t fully read this yet, but it appears to be a thoughtful consideration of how coping with a pandemic changes learning.



Sunday Reading : (Not Only Reading)

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I used to do this series highlighting things I enjoyed reading throughout the week or things I wanted to save for myself to enjoy on Sunday. Then life got busier, we had a child. I have never enjoyed reading things on screens as much as on paper, so when I had time to read I prioritized books and zines. But I miss some of the surprising richness and connection from online media. So let’s give this a go. 

You’ll Never Find Another by Lydia Copeland

I love the atmosphere of this piece, the touches of specificity that really ground it in the body, the home, even as the dream pulls elsewhere.

These Symphonies & Operas Are Hosting Virtual Shows for You to Enjoy at Home by Megan Schaltegger

We’ve been enjoying some Met Opera productions at home. You don’t have to have some education or background on types of music to enjoy. Just listen to the music. Feelings are feelings are feelings.

Can Poetry Change Your Life? by Louis Menand

This is from 2017 but I haven’t read it and my friend Kathleen shared it with me recently. It’s a critic’s review of a book, but as with any good bit of criticism, it’s about more than just one piece of artistry. If you like poetry and/or pop music, I recommend giving it a read.

Freaking Homeschool by Sacha Mardou

This comic shares an experience that many parents can probably relate to in relation to attempting homeschooling, but in a broader sense, it describes what parents engage in all the time — a reckoning of old wounds stimulated by the presence of a child experiencing their own challenges and pains. I’m reluctant to call this pandemic a “gift”, but I do hope the forced shift in perspective encourages growth for people who survive it.

Carson Ellis is hosting Quarantine Art Club

It looks super fun whether you’re 5 years old or 60 years old. Lyra is a little too young to appreciate much in the way of direction — or maybe that’s just her personality — but I might try anyway.

People are decorating their windows with hearts and messages of hope right now by Alisha Ebrahimji

I’ve been thinking a lot about how to feel connected when we can’t be in each other’s presence. Sometimes the simplest solutions are powerful. Even better when it gives little kids ways to express their feelings.

Mom Talk: The Case for Small Magic by Erin Feher

So necessary right now.