Monday, April 29, 2013

Poetry On And Off The Wall

Poetry On And Off The Wall 2013 is an exhibit sponsored by Five Wings Arts Council that features the work of poets living in Cass, Crow Wing, Morrison, Todd and Wadena counties. Five Wings Arts Council encourages and promotes arts creation, appreciation and education through grant programs and technical assistance to enhance the quality of life for Minnesota residents in Cass, Crow Wing, Morrison, Todd and Wadena counties. 
This year I participated in the event along with 19 other poets. It was a privilege to celebrate the written and spoken word with all of them. I enjoyed hearing the poet's stories that led up to the creation of their poems. Each participant could submit up to three poems. There was a wide range of ages for the participants with the youngest being eight. At the end of the event guests were encouraged to vote for their favorite poem of the day. Samantha's Dish Towel Poem was the winner.

Permission was given by Samantha Mrazek and Laura Hansen to have their poems published on Ever Ready blog.
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My friend, Rita Stone, wanted me to write a poem to go with her hand stitched dishtowels she was giving as gifts to her grandchildren.  So, here is the result!

DISH TOWEL POEM

I hope you use these towels a lot,
To dry your dishes and your pots.

This towel is sewn with love,
With prayers and thoughts from heaven above.

The stitches were made with care and good wishes,
And loads of Grandma Rita’s hugs and kisses.

But remember, do not use this to scrub the biffy,
Or, to dry your very fat kitty.

Each thread was sewn with love and hope,
For you to have blessings (and plenty of soap).

This is not meant to scrub pots or pans,
Or to wash empty garbage cans.

Scrubbing the floor is a definite no-no,
If this should happen, I’d feel very low-low.

I want you to use them, yes, use them a lot!
However, if you cut yourself, please don’t use them to blot.

 By Samantha Mrazek
Samantha is an 11 year old poet/writer from Motley, MN. She wrote her first book when she was 5-years old. At age 9 she was the 2011first place winner in the Staples/Motley Area Arts Council Poetry Slam. She is in the process of co-publishing an animal magazine. 

A Clubhouse For The Book Club
By Laura Hansen
There would be trees growing up through the floor
and birds chattering like in a glass roofed arboretum.

There would be the smell of fresh crushed grapes
and sliced melon, peach.

Friends would bring violins, violas, and serenade us.
For winter meetings there would be trombones

gleaming in the light of a thousand candles
each finger placement honed soft as flannel.

In our book club hideout we would start out
by saying the title aloud like an opening mantra.

Centered thus, we would blow out the candles,
set soft smoke spirals rising to the open roof.

In darkness we would discuss the main character’s
red sneakers, the animal that prowls the forest,

the foreshadowing of grief. The men will leave early
and the women stay late, chewing the bones

of the night’s discussion, passing story upon story
around the circle to be examined.

Our legs stiffen under the weight of our bodies,
the mossy ground gives off a dank chill,

but we are loathe to return to our brightly-
lit lives, our TVs and children and cell phones.

We are still lounging in the soft belly of the novel,
held by its prickly desire. The stars

that swirl in its sky may be our sky, its dark night
our night. We are held here among the trees

our legs twisted together like vines, hands
in our laps like well-schooled children.
by Laura Hansen

Laura is a writer and a poet. She the author of two self-published poetry chapbooks: Why I Keep Rabbits and Diving the Drop-Off. She has had articles and poems published in several regional literary journals and magazines. Laura owns Bookin’ It, an independent bookstore, in Little Falls, MN. http://www.bookinitnow.com/
She will be starting a new chapter in her life with the bookstore's closing in late summer after 20 some years in the business. Laura finds inspiration for writing poems from living her life in a pink house along the Mississippi River with her books and two dogs.  

Cabin Poet
The allure of the lake
way up north 
entices me to leave
the cities far behind.

Searching for solitude
to renew a weary spirit 
and refresh a thirsty soul.

Paddling tranquil waters
wailing loons meander through the rushes
tall pines whisper among the breezes
birds chatter between the trees
a humming engine passes by
breaking the silence
of an early morning ride.

Cabin choices abound
with many things to do.
Diving into a favorite book
penning a quirky verse
hiking the Woodtick Trail
and jig-sawing a Minnesota map.

Savoring the rich aroma of morning coffee
as hours pass quickly into days.
Too soon I need to say good-bye
heading back to that daily maze.
by Sue Ready

Poetry tip: Celebrate April Poetry Month with a decadent dessert and enjoy a book of poems
 Chocolate and Cointreau Mousse
Mousse in French literally means froth or foam. This melt in your mouth mousse marries the flavors of chocolate and orange. It makes a grand finale to a meal. The dessert can be served in a large bowl or individual glasses. For something different use individual martini glasses to serve the mousse in.
Recipe serves 10
Ingredients:
  • 6 oz. semi-sweet baking chocolate and 1 square bittersweet baking chocolate
  • 6 TB. butter
  •  1/4 cup orange juice
  • 2 TB. cocoa powder
  • 5 large eggs separated 
  • 3 -4 TB. Grand Marnier or Cointreau
  • 3/4 of a pint of whipping cream
  • 4 TB. sugar
Directions:
  • Separate egg yolks from whites (room temperature)
  • Break the chocolate into squares and place the chocolate, butter and orange juice in the top of a double boiler over a pan of simmering water
  • When the chocolate starts to melt whisk the mixture to blend it (tip place bowl in sink each time you whisk the mixture)
  • After the chocolate and butter have melted remove from heat, stir in the cocoa powder
  • Whisk in egg yolks and Cointreau or Grand Marnier  and simmer all of this over water for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally do not let boil
  • Remove from heat to cool
  • Beat egg whites with sugar
  • Beat whip cream
  • Fold whip cream that has been whipped and beaten egg whites together
  • Fold this mixture into cooled chocolate mixture
  • Refrigerate till serving if more than a few hours cover with wax paper














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