Slice of Life Tuesdays: Good Things

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I pondered these paragraphs from Henry David Thoreau’s essay, “Walking,” today:

      “I can easily walk ten, fifteen, twenty, any number of miles, commencing at my own door, without going by any house, without crossing a road except where the fox and the mink do: first along by the river, and then the brook, and then the meadow and the woodside. There are square miles in my vicinity which have no inhabitant. From many a hill I can see civilization and the abodes of man afar. The farmers and their works are scarcely more obvious than woodchucks and their burrows. Man and his affairs, church and state and school, trade and commerce, and manufactures and agriculture even politics, the most alarming of them all—I am pleased to see how little space they occupy in the landscape. Politics is but a narrow field, and that still narrower highway yonder leads to it. I sometimes direct the traveler thither. If you would go to the political world, follow the great road—follow that market-man, keep his dust in your eyes, and it will lead you straight to it; for it, too, has its place merely, and does not occupy all space. I pass from it as from a bean field into the forest, and it is forgotten. In one half-hour I can walk off to some portion of the earth’s surface where a man does not stand from one year’s end to another, and there, consequently, politics are not, for they are but as the cigar-smoke of a man..
      In literature it is only the wild that attracts us. Dullness is but another name for tameness. It is the uncivilized free and wild thinking in Hamlet and the Iliad, in all the scriptures and mythologies, not learned in the schools, that delights us. As the wild duck is more swift and beautiful than the tame, so is the wild—the mallard—thought, which ‘mid falling dews wings its way above the fens. A truly good book is something as natural, and as unexpectedly and unaccountably fair and perfect, as a wild-flower discovered on the prairies of the West or in the jungles of the East. Genius is a light which makes the darkness visible, like the lightning’s flash, which perchance shatters the temple of knowledge itself—and not a taper lighted at the hearthstone of the race, which pales before the light of common day…
      In short, all good things are wild and free. There is something in a strain of music, whether produced by an instrument or by the human voice—take the sound of a bugle in a summer night, for instance—which by its wildness, to speak without satire, reminds me of the cries emitted by wild beasts in their native forests. It is so much of their wildness as I can understand. Give me for my friends and neighbors wild men, not tame ones… 

      While almost all men feel an attraction drawing them to society, few are attracted strongly to Nature. In their reaction to Nature men appear to me for the most part, notwithstanding their arts, lower than the animals. It is not often a beautiful relation, as in the case of the animals. How little appreciation of the beauty of the land-scape there is among us! We have to be told that the Greeks called the world Beauty, or Order, but we do not see clearly why they did so, and we esteem it at best only a curious philological fact…”

 

I’ve been seeking nature lately; I’m not sure why, but it may be because the world seems overwhelming right now. However, the sun shined today right as I left school, after a grey, snowy 24 hours. And the moon is most mysterious and beautiful this winter, making me mindful of nature again and again. I walked around the driveway tonight in the freezing cold, looking…allowing Thoreau’s words to sink in. Getting back to nature — ah! Life! Love! Bliss!

 

Slice of Life Story Challenge Day 11: Weird Dreams

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Weird DreSlice of Life Small Logoams

I had some weird dreams recently.

I don’t know what they mean to me.

It’s freaking me out, without a doubt…

Stop it!

Slice of Life Tuesday: Revisiting OLW

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Revisiting my One Little Word

Slice of Life Small LogoLEAN.

Laughter fades.

Exhaustion sets in.

Any way we can go back in time?

Nope. Just deal.

 

Slice of Life Tuesdays: Rewind

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Slice of Life Small LogoRewind, But It Still Fits

I am recycling today, literally cleaning out the paper clutter, and revisiting some posts that still pertain in 2015. This is a special poem I created with my class last year with a mentor text. It still resonates with me today. I will use it again. Go forth, and save the planet!

My Poem for the Students

Forget that we started class before eight. Forget your pencil? No, I won’t wait! Forget the answers on the test? Forget to act your very best?
Forget the author, forget the plot. Forget which book was great, or not. Forget to walk straight in the hall. Forget to pick up the basketball.

But don’t forget the fun we had. (Don’t forget to ask for new IPads!) Don’t forget to help each other; she’s your sister, he’s your brother. Don’t forget to think of me whenever you use the Power of Three.

Don’t forget the lessons you learned, about thinking, dreaming, and how you turned…work into the fabulous grades you earned.

Forget about Ellis Island, Russia’s pogroms, and geography’s many, many miles. But don’t forget —

— I’ll miss your smiles!

This poem was inspired by Kenn Nesbitt’s “What to Remember in School” (from Aliens Have Landed at our School, 2006)

 

Slice of Life Tuesdays: Taking a Break

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Taking a Break

Assessments are over; what should we do?

Should we sing? Should we dance? I haven’t a clue.

Yes! Let’s dance! Yes! Let’s sing!

We need to take a break and bring

the students and teachers back to life.

Take a break — why, yes! That’s what we’ll do.

We’ll eat cookies and pizza and ice cream, too.

It won’t be long before the school year is through.

Then summer will be here; what should we do?

Our school year is much longer this year — 8 snow days to make up! I can’t help but feel a little stressed tonight as we wind down and prepare for summer and beyond. I’m thinking, “What should I do…first?”  Enjoy your last days of school!

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Thank you to the team at Two Writing Teachers for hosting Slice of Life writing. You ladies rock!

Vacation Ends: A Haiku

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Vacation

Florida’s main goal:

Weary traveler renews

so life can resume.

_ Jennifer Sniadecki

SOLSC Day 6: Sick!

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Slice of Life Small LogoThe March Slice of Life Story Challenge is hosted by http://www.twowritingteachers.wordpress.com.

Sick!

It’s been a doctor day/sick day for most of us here at home. Here’s a little “get well” poem before bed.

Sick in the head, going to bed.

Night night, sleep tight.

May tomorrow bring sun and fun.

 

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