Poetry Friday: Flyfishing in the Rain


Fly Fishing, Olentangy River

It wasn’t supposed to rain,
but it did.

At first there was only the sound of water in water –
riffle tumbling over shallow stones.

Next, the sound of water in treetops –
rain approaching river
carried by wind and cloud.

Then, suddenly, the sound of water on water –
drops dimpling river,
elemental hush of reunion.

Sky water and Earth water and me – 
body made of water
standing in water
blessed by water.

© Mary Lee Hahn, 2022


We had a nice turnout for the July meet-up of Ohio Women on the Fly. Spirits were high as we walked from the parking lot at Antrim Lake to the Olentangy River, which runs near the south and east sides of the lake. The clouds were building, but we weren’t worried — rain was not in the forecast.

Silly us.

We got soaked. Drenched. We were soggy, and by the time we got back to cars when it was starting to get dark, muddy up to our knees.

It was great fun. It was an adventure. When was the last time you had an adventure (the kind involving lots of water and mud)? I highly recommend it.

Every time I go fly fishing, the experience is new. No two times on a river are the same. That’s why fly fishing is a sport I love.

Catherine gave the Inklings this month’s challenge to write a poem about sports. Here’s what the rest of the crew came up with, and Molly has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup to boot.

Molly@Nix the Comfort Zone
Linda@A Word Edgewise
Heidi @my juicy little universe
Catherine@Reading to the Core
Margaret@Reflections on the Teche

Poetry Friday: Woven

This month’s Poetry Sisters challenge didn’t seem tricky when the idea was hatched. Phrase Acrostics are pretty much reverse Golden Shovels, with the striking line on the left rather than the right. But then er…uh..someone suggested using phrases from the iconic poem by Maya Angelou, “Still I Rise.” That’s when the challenge got tricky more complicated and interesting. How could we borrow phrases from this poem while still honoring the poet and the spirit of the poem without being appropriationist? Reading and rereading the poem with the intention to uphold Angelou’s purpose led me to these two drafts, which weave lines and meanings like a braided rug on a warm wood floor. Both of the titles, as well as the striking lines, come from Angelou’s poem.

Into A Daybreak That’s Wondrously Clear

But for the song of the chickadee,
still settles over zinnias, sweet peas;

like air born swimmers,
dust shimmers;

I’ll let go of the darkness of night,
rise, flutter, a monarch in flight.

© Mary Lee Hahn, 2022


Bringing the Gifts That My Ancestors Gave

Into. Not between or behind. Neither sideways, nor                                                    
a halfway maybe. Into, with all the force of                                                          
daybreak and tide swell. With both feet.                                              
That’s where we’re headed, so we might as well go                                                    
wondrously, wisely, wholeheartedly, with                                              
clear-eyed vision. Leading, lifting, rising into tomorrow.  

© Mary Lee Hahn, 2022


Here’s what the rest of the Poetry Sisters came up with this month:

Tricia @ The Miss Rumphius Effect
Tanita @ {fiction, instead of lies}
Sara @ Read Write Believe
Laura @ Laura Purdie Salas
Liz @ Liz Garton Scanlon
Kelly @ Kelly Ramsdell
Andi @ A Wrung Sponge

Next month, we’ll be writing Bop poems. Join us if you’d like!

Marcie, a fellow Sealey Challenge reader, has this week’s Poetry Friday Roundup.

Poetry Friday: The Roundup is HERE!



That’s What You Wrote About the Green Beans

Dear Sugarplum,
I picked the first of the beans today.
I’ll cook them the way Dad liked.
Overcook them, really, 
flavored with plenty of bacon grease.
There’s a cucumber ready, too.
I’ll slice it up and sprinkle it with vinegar and sugar.
No tomatoes yet
except for a few cherry tomatoes.
I ate them in the early morning, 
the way you used to
before you grabbed your bike from the little building
and headed off to the pool.
What should I have with the beans?
Maybe just a sandwich with slices of leftover pot roast.
Well, it’s just about time to go to coffee. Arby’s today.
Rae’s in Nebraska, but everyone else will be there.

That’s what you wrote about the green beans.
Or what you would have written
if you were

© Mary Lee Hahn, 2022


A couple of weeks ago, Linda (A Word Edgewise) offered up her third annual “Clunker Exchange.” I chose the line “That’s what you wrote about the green beans,” and I couldn’t have been more surprised by the poem (and memories) those eight words were able to elicit. Thank you, Linda, for this beautiful not-a-clunker-to-me!

Now let’s see what you’ve been writing (or reading) these days! Are you getting ready to take part in the Sealey Challenge? Share your stack if you’ve made one! Can’t imagine reading a book of poetry every day in August? Children’s poetry books count!!

I’m going totally old-school with the roundup this week. Leave your link and a short description in the comments. That’s it. If you’re not able to comment for some reason, I’ll help: mary lee dot hahn at gmail

Poetry Friday: Already?


Is it Friday already? How did THAT happen? Must be another side effect of…what’s it called when you can’t remember words or names or dates?

Sigh. Aging is definitely not for the faint of heart.

Elisabeth at Unexpected Intersections has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup, and it’s a good thing I had to double check that because I had it in my calendar that I have the roundup on the 29th, which I don’t — the roundup is here NEXT WEEK! Sigh (again). The struggle is real…

Poetry Friday: It’s Not Where We Draw the Lines, It’s How We Draw Them


It’s Not Where We Draw the Lines, It’s How We Draw Them

Lines divide, cause schisms, rifts, gulfs, splits;
circles create community.
Lines emphasize mine and yours;
circles encourage ours.
Lines are discordant;
circles are song.
Draw more lines?
What’s the

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2022

The entire time I was stitching this mandala, I was thinking about how lines divide, and where we draw the line. The line between love and hate, tolerance and intolerance, rights and responsibilities, morality and immorality, church and state, now and then, history and future, optimism and pessimism and apathy, courage and cowardice and apathy, action and inaction…and apathy.

All we can each do is our very own best. Every small thing we do counts. Less bark, more wag; less hiss more purr; fewer lines more circles.

Generous Jan has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup at bookseedstudio.

And an aside. If you follow my mandalas on FB or IG, you have seen Views From the Garden, parts one (milkweed) and two (coneflowers). I intended for this week to feature zinnias, but they were shy and have only just begun blooming. They’ll get their five minutes of fame this coming week!

Poetry Friday: Persistence Definito

photo via Unsplash

Heidi gave the Inklings our challenge this month: “There are so many ways in which we’ve all (but especially as women, as educators) had to be persistent, despite our weariness. Write a poem (for kids or adults) about PERSISTENCE.  If you write for kids, maybe try a definito!” Little did she know her words would hold So. Much. More. Truth. in these past couple of weeks.

Here are the rules for writing a definito: “the definito is a free verse poem of 8-12 lines (aimed at readers 8-12 years old) that highlights wordplay as it demonstrates the meaning of a less common word, which always ends the poem.

And here’s how the rest of the crew met Heidi’s challenge:

Linda@A Word Edgewise
Heidi @my juicy little universe
Molly@Nix the Comfort Zone
Catherine@Reading to the Core
Margaret@Reflections on the Teche

Janice has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup at Salt City Verse.

Poetry Friday: You Can’t Fool Me

“Walking” the Cat

The Poetry Sisters’ challenge this month was to write Welsh Byr a Thoddaid Poems. There are a ton of rules, but when you get right down to it, the form consists of lots of syllable-counting and attention to rhymes.

My first cat, Jennyanydots, achieved the status of Truly Old Cat. She passed at the age of 21 and was a tiny thing (maybe 6 pounds in the end) with a mighty voice for wailing when she couldn’t find her “tribe.”

Hemingway is a big guy (14 pounds) and not old yet — only 7-9 (he was a rescue) — so why is he starting the yowling-for-no-reason? Maybe just to give me a poem topic!

Here’s what the rest of the Poetry Sisters came up with this month:
Tricia @ The Miss Rumphius Effect
Tanita @ {fiction, instead of lies}
Sara @ Read Write Believe
Laura @ Laura Purdie Salas
Liz @ Liz Garton Scanlon
Kelly @ Kelly Ramsdell
Andi @ A Wrung Sponge

Next month we are writing acrostic phrase poems. Choose any line from the poem “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou and use each word in the phrase to begin a new line of your poem.

Catherine has this week’s Poetry Friday Roundup at Reading to the Core.

Poetry Friday: Water Strider

photo via Unsplash

Earlier this week, I stood mesmerized by the water striders in a pool of still water at the edge of our little local wetland. Time stopped as I watched them go about their business in the six square feet of liquid neighborhood they call home. Oh, to be so small that my feet only dent the surface of water!

Michelle has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup at her blog, Michelle Kogan.

Poetry Friday: Bike Stories

cottonwood blizzard
almost mulberry season
first bike ride of spring

©Mary Lee Hahn, 2022

A few years ago on the original A Year of Reading, I did a series of “Bike Stories.” Now that the first ride of the season has been — Ahhh CHOO! — survived, it’s time to get out more frequently and see what lessons and stories can be found this year!

The schedule is COMPLETE for roundup hosts July – December! Thanks, all!

Buffy has this week’s Poetry Friday roundup at Buffy Silverman.

Poetry Friday — Call for Roundup Hosts

It’s that time again. Six months have passed since last we queued up to host the Poetry Friday roundups.

What is the Poetry Friday roundup? A gathering of links to posts featuring original or shared poems, or reviews of poetry books. A carnival of poetry posts. Here is an explanation that Rene LaTulippe shared on her blog, No Water River, and here is an article Susan Thomsen wrote for the Poetry Foundation.

Who can do the Poetry Friday roundup? Anyone who is willing to gather the links in some way, shape, or form (Mr. Linky, “old school” in the comments, or ???) on the Friday of your choice. If you are new to the Poetry Friday community, jump right in, but perhaps choose a date later on so that we can spend some time getting to know each other.

How do you do a Poetry Friday roundup? If you’re not sure, stick around for a couple of weeks and watch…and learn! One thing we’re finding out is that folks who schedule their posts, or who live in a different time zone than you, appreciate it when the roundup post goes live sometime on Thursday.

How do I get the code for the PF Roundup Schedule for the sidebar of my blog? You can grab the list from the sidebar here at A(nother) Year of Reading, or I’d be happy to send it to you if you leave me your email address. 

Why would I do a Poetry Friday Roundup? Community, community, community. It’s like hosting a poetry party on your blog!

Put your request in the comments and I’ll update the calendar frequently. Feel free to share this post on Twitter (I left and I’m not missing it…much).

And now for the where and when:

1 Janice at Salt City Verse
8 Jan at Bookseed Studio
15 Elisabeth at Unexpected Intersections
22 Mary Lee at A(nother) Year of Reading
29 Marcie at Marcie Flinchum Atkins

5 Molly at Nix the Comfort Zone
12 Margaret at Reflections on the Teche
19 Dave at Leap of Dave
26 Tanita at {fiction, instead of lies}

2 Linda at TeacherDance
9 Carol at Beyond LiteracyLink
16 Kat at Kathryn Apel
23 Rose at Imagine the Possibilities
30 Tabatha at The Opposite of Indifference

7 Sarah Grace at Sarah Grace Tuttle
14 Matt at Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme
21 Bridget at wee words for wee ones
28 Jone at Jone Rush MacCulloch

4 Heidi at my juicy little universe
11 Buffy at Buffy Silverman
18 Jama at Jama’s Alphabet Soup
25 Ruth at There is no such thing as a God-forsaken town

2 Catherine at Reading to the Core
9 Michelle at Michelle Kogan
16 Karen at Karen Edmisten*
23 Irene at Live Your Poem
30 Patricia at Reverie