Ibid

EliotPaperIt is March, and the premiere of my one-woman poetry show Poem Life is fast approaching. Until then, I am going to post snippets of things that will be in the show. Here is the first one.

My senior paper submitted

In Partial Fulfillment

of the Requirements for

English IV

was turned in on March 10, 1980 to Mrs. Akers at Locust Grove High School. Mrs. Akers was a beloved teacher at LG High School for more years than anyone knows. My father was one of her students. LG folks had the experience of generations of their family being taught by her.

She taught Senior English, and when I was a child, the LG Schools Open House was a BIG DEAL. One of its highlights was visiting Mrs. Akers’ room where all the student shadow boxes would be on display. These were elaborately-made scenes from books the seniors had read. Paper-mache, woodworking, clay, painting, sculpture–all kinds of arts went into constructing these dioramas. I loved visiting her room every year to see them. When I was a senior, however, I copped out on all the artistry and picked a Zane Grey novel, bought some plastic cowboys and Indians and made a scene from it. I’m pretty sure I didn’t even read the book. Anyway . . . Mrs. Akers

EliotPaper2_001I remember two things from her class: memorizing Macbeth’s tomorrow and tomorrow speech and diagramming sentences. Mrs. Akers rarely moved from her desk. She was as wide as she was tall, which was short, and her bosom rested on the desk. No one acted up in Mrs. Akers’ class, nor came in tardy, nor threw spit wads.

My encyclopedia-riddled term paper was about T. S. Eliot. I had been writing poetry since I was a child, but I wasn’t familiar with a lot of poets. Eliot was in all our anthologies, and I liked Prufrock because of its elements of doom and rhythm and snooty mermaids. I made an A on the paper and the comment on the cover sheet was “An interesting and most informative paper.” I find it funny that this description is a phrase I use as a teacher when I have nothing better to say. To say a paper is “interesting” is to say it bored the hell out of me but oh well, you tried.

There is nothing original in this paper: I avoided plagiarism at all costs to make it “interesting.” I “Ibid” all over the place. Young folks: Look it if up if that word throws you. There are unintentionally funny lines, such as this one about his wife, “She was clever, witty, vivacious, depressed, nervous, and a death-muse.” I also like this line, “If ordinary people couldn’t understand such writing, then it was too bad for them.” Ibid.

In Poem Life, (premiering March 21), I will devote a few minutes to reading selected portions of this essay while also playing the frame drum, which will add the appropriate note of seriousness to the affair. The last line of my 6-page essay reads, “Eliot, though often difficult, demands thoughtful study.” Ibid., p. 606.

The Haiku of Children

haiku6501Christmas is fun.
It comes once a year.
I like Christmas.

by Tommy Plogger

Eat Christmas dinner
Can’t wait until I eat
My full stomach

by Devin Dean

Love to make snowmen
Love to eat Christmas dinner
Love to watch snowflakes

by Nicole McCallister

Winter night moonrise
Cold in the winter night snow
We have fun tonight

by Brianna Gossett

Hunting season near
I can’t wait to go hunting
I jumped with joy

By Josh Fannon

Hey Santa was here
Winter came early this year
Santa loves cookies

By Nic Hoggatt

Can’t wait ’till Christmas
For the weather and presents
It’s the best feeling

by Cody Hubbard

I like Christmas stars
They can be very pretty
And most are very shiny

by Dallas Coatney

Santa loves reindeer
He eats them all for dinner
He dislikes cookies

by Kate Richardson

A Big Thank you to Melanie Perkins for having her young LG students write haiku and enter them in the ROMP Holiday Haiku contest. These poems and others by adults will be on display at the VFW Saturday, Dec. 13, while we have an art show and sale and sell tickets for the Christmas Home Tour. Come by!

Stories around the Campfire

DSC04730Tonight is ROMP Tellabration! For those of you who don’t know, Tellabration is a celebration of storytelling that usually occurs the Saturday before Thanksgiving–it is an international event where people from all over the place plan local storytelling events.

The museum’s Tellabration will include a visit to the museum, of course, but also stories around a wonderful warm fire, thanks to Ken, the Fire Master (level 2). We will also have smores and hot chocolate. So, even though it’s going to be COLDDDDDDD, the fire will be hot and the stories will be even hotter. Also, the museum is heated by a cast-iron wood stove.

We will have a few rounds of poker poetry inside and play some other word/poetry games (don’t be scared–you don’t have to be a poet!).

There will be an inappropriate and hilarious funeral story, a psychic story, perhaps a frog or outlaw story, (or a frog outlaw), a story told with a drum, and much more, including the story you bring.

We are easy to find, 2 miles west of Locust Grove on Rd. 560, then 1/2 mile north on Rd. 438 to Perkins Rd. Follow Perkins Rd. until it curves to the right and over a little hill, and there we are.

It all starts at 5:00 at the museum, and storytelling around 6:00. It’s appropriate for all ages and free, though donations are accepted. ROMP is a 501(c)3 nonprofit.

If you need more information or directions, call Shaun, 918-864-9152.

ROMP Tellabration

museumnightTellabration is an international celebration of storytelling with events happening in November the weeks and weekends before Thanksgiving. The Rural Oklahoma Museum of Poetry will host a Tellabration which will include stories and poems and story-poems. Visit the museum and the ROMP Shop, have some cocoa, and then enjoy the stories around the campfire–while also making some delicious smores.

Saturday, November 15

5:00-8:00 p.m.

Click on VISIT US for directions if you have never been here.

Call 918-864-9152 for more details.

If you are coming from out of town and are interested in staying the night, the Poet’s Retreat is currently available. Book it now!

Bring a story to tell or simply sit back and listen to them.

Dark & Scary

FIREIt’s almost here! Dark and Scary at the Rural Oklahoma Museum of Poetry. We will check out the museum, have cookies and cocoa, and tell scary stories around the campfire when it gets dark.

DARK & SCARY
Oct. 25, Saturday
6-9 p.m.
Rural Oklahoma Museum of Poetry
Locust Grove

Bring a favorite scary poem to read. If you entered the Scary Poem Contest—come prepared to share your poem and take home a prize! FREE. FREE. FREE.

Beware the Sasquatch, the coyote, and . . . other scary things in the dark…..Let’s entertain them with poetry.

ROMP is easy to find. Click the Visit Us page. To Google the address or put it in your GPS, just type in Perkins Rd, Locust Grove, and you will find us. Call if you need help. 918-864-9152.