Community Collection 21: EARTH SPEAKS TO ITS PEOPLE with Carole Boston Weatherford

Welcome to Poetry Month 2018 at No Water River!
Please take a moment to peruse the how-to below, and then dive in! Happy writing — and thank you for helping to build our collection(s)!
Remember: The Community Collections are open indefinitely, so you can visit each post at your leisure to add your poem!

Today’s Guest…

is one of the foremost poets writing for children today, and her many books often address African American history, families, and traditions. Please welcome much-lauded poet and educator …

CAROLE BOSTON WEATHERFORD

 

THE POEM

 

THE PROMPT

Write a poem in which the narrator is a geographic location speaking to current or past inhabitants.

COMMUNITY COLLECTION 21: EARTH SPEAKS TO ITS PEOPLE

WANT TO ADD YOUR POEM?

1. Paste it into the comment section below. I will gather the poems and add them to this post. OR
2. Email it to me at renee@reneelatulippe.com and I will add it to this post (graphics welcome)!

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THE POET

Carole Boston Weatherford is a New York Times best-selling author and one of the leading poets writing for young people today. She believes that poetry makes music with words. And she mines the past for family stories, fading traditions, and forgotten struggles. Her work spans poetry, nonfiction, biography, and historical fiction. Her latest releases are Freedom in Congo Square and You Can Fly: The Tuskegee Airmen. Carole’s 40-plus books have won many awards, including NAACP Image Award, Caldecott Honor, Sibert Honor, Coretta Scott King John Steptoe New Talent Award, SCBWI Golden Kite Honor, Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award, and Flora Steiglitz Straus Award from Bank Street College of Education

For career achievements, Carole received the Ragan-Rubin Award from North Carolina English Teachers Association and the North Carolina Literature Award, among the state’s highest civilian honors. She holds an M.A. in publications design from University of Baltimore and an M.F.A. in creative writing from University of North Carolina, Greensboro. She has two adult children and lives in North Carolina, where she is a Professor of English at Fayetteville State University. Through her books and performances, her words reach millions of young readers. And as a professor, she trains current and future teachers and mentors emerging writers. (from the author’s one-sheet)

Discover more about the author and her books at www.CBWeatherford.com.

THE BOOKS

IN YOUR HANDS
From award-winning Weatherford (Voice of Freedom; Moses), this poem from a black mother to her firstborn son will resonate as a prayer for all black boys. A mother holds her child’s hand while expressing her hopes for his safety, his confidence, and a world that will see him as a “vessel to be steered rather than a figure to be feared.” The narrative moves through the child’s life and the struggle most parents go through when they realize that they can no longer hold their children close and protect them, but acknowledges that extra worry that parents of black boys face as the mother asks God to hold her son in his hands. The book ends with the mother adding her prayer to the chorus: “Black lives matter. Your life matters.”

The text is given the space to shine opposite Pinkney’s art, with font size changes for impact. The illustrations, loose and fluid pastel watercolors with India ink outlines, offer a sense of warmth and comfort with swirls around the images projecting the mother’s love. Hands are integral to each picture, with larger hands at times representing God embracing the young boy. A final image shows God’s hands enveloping a world where everyone holds hands as the mother ends, “Hold my son in your hands.” VERDICT: An exceptional gift to black families, and with its important underlying messages of our times, this title should be added to most library collections. Best shared one-on-one with a loved one. (School Library Journal, starred review)

VOICE OF FREEDOM: FANNIE LOU HAMER: THE SPIRIT OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT
Stirring poems and stunning collage illustrations combine to celebrate the life of Fannie Lou Hamer, a champion of equal voting rights.

“I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.”

Despite fierce prejudice and abuse, even being beaten to within an inch of her life, Fannie Lou Hamer was a champion of civil rights from the 1950s until her death in 1977. Integral to the Freedom Summer of 1964, Ms. Hamer gave a speech at the Democratic National Convention that, despite President Johnson’s interference, aired on national TV news and spurred the nation to support the Freedom Democrats. Featuring vibrant mixed-media art full of intricate detail, Voice of Freedom celebrates Fannie Lou Hamer’s life and legacy with a message of hope, determination, and strength. (from Amazon.com)

BE A KING: DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.’S DREAM AND YOU
You can be a King. Stamp out hatred. Put your foot down and walk tall.

You can be a King. Beat the drum for justice. March to your own conscience.

Featuring a dual narrative of the key moments of Dr. King’s life alongside a modern class as the students learn about him, Carole Weatherford’s poetic text encapsulates the moments that readers today can reenact in their own lives. See a class of young students as they begin a school project inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and learn to follow his example, as he dealt with adversity and never lost hope that a future of equality and justice would soon be a reality. As times change, Dr. King’s example remains, encouraging a new generation of children to take charge and change the world . . . to be a King. (from Amazon.com)

 
Don’t miss a prompt! Save this calendar to your desktop.

CALENDAR OF POETS ~ APRIL 2018

Check out the poetry video library!
“Mother Africa Speaks to Civilization” and prompt copyright © by Carole Boston Weatherford.
Copyright on community collection poems held by authors indicated. All rights reserved.
Other post content © 2018 Renée M. LaTulippe or as indicated. All rights reserved.
Serengeti by Stefan Swanepoelby, Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0

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8 Comments

  1. Ms. Weatherford, Thank you for stopping by today. Today’s poem is deeper than beautiful, wider than wow. I am always, ALWAYS impressed with your sense of connection in your work. I have used your work as mentor text and enjoy learning from your pages. Thank you for what you have given our children…and us adults. You are a treasure.

  2. A wonderful poem of connection and harkening back. It made me harken back, although not quite as far back in time. I wish we all viewed each other as family, as we all are, if we go back far enough. I embrace the feelings of love I found here.

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