Sunday, October 5, 2014

Two CPITS Poetry Books Hot off the Press: If the Sky Was My Heart, and Poetry Crossing: 50 + Lessons for 50 Years


IF THE SKY WAS MY HEART: SONOMA COUNTY STUDENTS WIN PUBLICATION HONORS

Sonoma County students sixth grader, Ryan Murgatroyd, 4th grader, Nicholas Voegels, and 3rd grader, Gemma Ahern, of Kenwood Elementary School; 6th grader, Eduardo Lopez, of Cali Calmécac Language Academy, in Windsor; 3rd grader, Gavin Rognlien, of Prestwood School; and the entire Fort Ross School Kindergarten-2nd grade class all have poems in the new poetry anthology, If the Sky Was My Heart, just released by California Poets in the Schools. The book features poetry by more than sixty students from around California, their poems were selected from among thousands of poems written during the past year.

Dawn After Sappho

A moment ago, gold-sandaled
dawn woke me up
with the voice of my mom.
She tells me to wake up
or the bus will leave me.
I get dressed and I put
on my golden-winged
sandals. I brush
my teeth and then
I grab my backpack
and go flying to
the bus stop.

Eduardo Lopez
Grade Six, Cali Calmécac Language Academy, 
Windsor, Sonoma County
Richard Meza, classroom teacher, 
Phyllis Meshulam, poet-teacher

If the Sky Was My Heart, edited by Blake More, also features poems by Sonoma County CPITS poets Arthur Dawson of Kenwood, Gwynn O’Gara (Sebastopol Poet Laureate), Phyllis Meshalum—both of Sebastopol; Jabez W. Churchill (Ukiah Poet Laureate), and Maureen Hurley. Other Sonoma County CPITS poets in the program include Molly Albracht-Sierra, Claire Drucker, Iris Jamahl Dunkle, Jackie Hallerberg, Meg Hamill, Kyle Matthews, Blake More, and Kathleen Winters.
(The book title If the Sky Was My Heart, came from a poem by one of my 4th grade students Emily Mozzetti of Buri Buri School in South San Francisco. I also have a poem in the anthology, KINDLING).

POETRY CROSSING: 50 + LESSONS FOR 50 YEARS

Sebastopol's Phyllis Meshulam is the editor of another new CPITS book, Poetry Crossing: 50 + Lessons for 50 Years. It’s an anthology of teaching resources chock-full of 50 fabulous creative writing lesson plans, and contains a foreword by Susan Wooldridge, author of Poemcrazy. Said Phyllis: This book is filled with ready-to-go lessons for poets of all ages. It features model poems by award-winning poets and poets laureate, as well as student poems, and bilingual resources.”

Contributors with a California connection include former United States Poet Laureate Robert Hass along with Jane Hirshfield, Brenda Hillman, Ellen Bass, Juan Felipe Herrera, Al Young, Gary Snyder, Francisco Alarcón, David St. John, and other poets who have have donated their poems in order to further the mission of inspiring youth. Poetry Crossing makes tangible decades of CPITS creative writing pedagogy, aimed to stimulate the intellectual curiosity and creative problem-solving skills of today’s students.


A generic statewide press release in the works:

IF THE SKY WAS MY HEART: CALIFORNIA STUDENTS WIN PUBLICATION HONORS

California students from kindergarten to 12th grade are featured poets in the new poetry anthology, If the Sky Was My Heart, just released by California Poets in the Schools. The anthology features poetry by more than sixty students fromSan Diego to Del Norte counties—their poems were selected from among thousands of poems written during the past year.

Dawn After Sappho

A moment ago, gold-sandaled
dawn woke me up
with the voice of my mom.
She tells me to wake up
or the bus will leave me.
I get dressed and I put
on my golden-winged
sandals. I brush
my teeth and then
I grab my backpack
and go flying to
the bus stop.

Eduardo Lopez
Grade Six, Cali Calmécac Language Academy, 
Windsor, Sonoma County
Richard Meza, classroom teacher, 
Phyllis Meshulam, poet-teacher

The book title If the Sky Was My Heart, came from a poem by one of Maureen Hurley's 4th grade students Emily Mozzetti in South San Francisco.
If the Sky Was My Heart

If the sky was my heart
the birds would be my voice.
If the river could talk
it would tell me to swim
until the end of time.
If the wind was my breath
the sky would be my soul.
If our galaxy was a rollercoaster
there would be a line
running through the Milky Way.
If I was the sun
I would be the king of light.
If my heart were the world
it would be filled with love.

Emily Mozzetti
Grade Four, Buri Buri Elementary School,
South San Francisco, Sam Mateo County
Ms. Moussa, classroom teacher
Maureen Hurley, poet-teache


If the Sky Was My Heart, edited by Blake More, also features poems by CPITS poet-teachers.

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