Wednesday 13th, #3

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I never liked knowing that words are limitless.

I always like to pretend

that stars that left particles in the air were nothing

more than tombstones lost to infinity

 

I never liked thinking that romanticism was the only type of poetry

You say that the two are

inseparable, but I always believed that a word

breathed deeper than a monarch

who sits on a tree

 

I never liked listening to modern love songs

You say that a bird’s song sounds a lot like

plastic bottles whistling through air conditioner vents,

I always thought that the shadow a pen made

on a page were like imprints on a aphasic moon,

and as lunar patterns became our gods

poetry should become like scripture onto

a city’s landscape.

 

By Andrew White, Houston Youth Poet Laureate, 12th grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Andrew White, Houston Youth Poet Laureate. The background music is “Hard Moon Light” by DJ.E_State. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

Mi corazón es como un mapa

repleto de sueños y lágrimas.

Mi corazón es un lugar donde

todos pueden hacer amigos y

amarse mutuamente. Mi corazón

es donde los arrendajos azules cantan

en un día soleado de verano.

Mi corazón es un lugar donde

puedes subir las montañas y sentir

la fresca brisa en tu cara

Mi corazón es como un tulipán

esperando para florecer sus

pétalos brillantes. Mi corazón

es como un mar cafecito,

dulce y de chocolate.

Tuesday, 12th #1

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My heart is like a map

full of dreams and tears.

My heart is a place where

everyone can make friends and

love one another. My heart

is where the Blue Jays sing

on a sunny summer day.

My heart is a place where

You can climb mountains and feel

the cool breeze on your face.

My heart is like a tulip

waiting to bloom its

brights petals. My heart

is like a dark brown sea,

sweet and chocolaty.

 

By Esperanza, 3rd grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Jaelynn, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Clap Your Hands” by Jahzzar. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

Monday, 11th #2

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Two days ago in a white fluffy dress

the air was so strong

that my dress lifted and

twirled the wind.

It was not just any wind,

it was my friend the wind.

The wind was my friend because

it was singing a song,

it smelled like roses

all over again.

The wind gave me hope

the wind gave me heart-shaped love.

By Alyssa, 3rd grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Lynn, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Woken With You” by Ketsa. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

What if food could talk? During April WITS showcases food-themed poems written by Houston students, reaching 600,000 customers at four H-E-B markets: Montrose, Buffalo Speedway, Bunker Hill, and San Felipe. So, as customers pick through apples, they read poems about apples. These students words make shopping a unique experience at H-E-B! The grocery poem project is made possible by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, and the City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance.

 

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Congratulations to our 21 youth performance poets who will be competing in the Space City Slam Semifinals tomorrow, Saturday, April 9th at 12pm and 3:30pm at Meca Houston (1600 Kane St Houston, TX).

12pm Slamguide

Donald
Benji
Caleb
Biz
Calvin
Marcus
Ashley
Jadon
Addison
Joyane

3:30pm Slam

Adam
Rukmini
Avon
Ashlyn
Madison
Kronic Writer
Hailey
David
Jackson
Carl
Alexandria

The top 6 poets from each bout will move on to the Grand Slam Finals at Discovery Green on April 24. Competitors, please arrive 45 minutes before your bout to check in. Good luck everyone! See you there!

Friday, 8th, #2

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When I was born, the doctors taught me how to drink straight out of a sippy cup.

My voice sounded like a grown man’s.

I was outstanding.

When I turned one, I could ride a motorcycle and drive a Ford Mustang.

I was so strong that whatever I touched would break.

When I turned two, I learned how to jump over the Eiffel Tower.

When I turned three, I invented potions.

When I turned four, I told all the kings and queens, “You’re fired!”

Then, I became king, and there was no queen.

When I turned five, I got a trophy for playing football, and the score was 1,000 to 0.

When I turned six, I wished to be two again for I didn’t want to go to school.

When I turned seven, my mom got me a job at Toys-R-Us.

Now, I’m all grown up.

Electric me!

By Jonathan, 1st grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Cathleen, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Boulevard St. Germain” by Jahzzar. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

2 thurs, 7th

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“Ahooooooo!” the wolves howl, transitioning from evening to night. The snow stays cold, with a cool, chilly breeze and howling as we go to sleep. The house starts to get cold as we snuggle up with our blankets. As we sleep, it is very quiet very peaceful, in our countryside. The only noises are wolves howling and boars and pigs snorting.

At night I always hear, “Woah!” from Little Billy, whining and crying in his bed in our room. So I try to calm him down. In that tree in the yard at night, I usually hear a family of birds. But tonight, the three little ones were stuck in the tree because the snow wearied their wings down. Poor little birds. I wish I could help.

By Arnav, 3rd grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Keyara, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Sonnenaufgang” by Martijn de Boer. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

1 wed, 6th

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We are built gray today.

Gray as the night sky.

Many hard times face your dreams.

But keep moving forward, don’t let your spirit down.

Times may face you when you want to give up.

You feel like you’re in a cell.

But keep your spirit high, never let it down.

Move ahead, accomplish, your dreams come true.

You may be the loneliest person, but keep your spirit high.

For a journey, climb the highest mountain.

Go till the edge.

Listen for birds at sunset.

At your hardest times, nature will guide you.

Start your dream that you want.

Open yourself wide to earth.

By Atticus, 2nd grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Teyara, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Catching Feathers” by Ketsa. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

Tuesday, 5 #2

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She was in the dark meadow, She saw a beautiful big brown wolf with shiney, silky fur. She saw its shining brown eyes as they twinkled in the moonlight. She neared it from the corner of the beautiful meadow. She saw its eyes full of worry when she neared it by the second. She sat across from the beautiful yet sacred creature. She closed her eyes for a moment. Seconds later she felt a presence and warm breath in her face. She slowly opened her eyes and saw the creature, curiosity full in its big brown eyes. The wind blew through her, whispering a name.

By Michelle, 7th grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Rukmini, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Harp (2009) ” by Celestial Aeon Project. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

In honor of National Poetry Month Huffington Post recognized 10 amazing Latino performance poetry artists, including WITS writer Zachary Caballero. Check out their videos here!

 

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Monday, 4th #2

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Fly free.

Flap your wings free.

Be content with your natural beauty.

Remember your place among all living things.

Enjoy the view!

Dance in the breezes

Be colorful.

Shine!

By Jennifer, 3rd Grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Andrew, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “Another Day” by Ketsa. Produced by Susan Phillips.

 

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

photo courtesy of pixabay.com

 

Be on the lookout

Poets are everywhere

The red bird chirping on the wire

The pit bull barking at a friend

The trees whispering in the breeze

Boots scraping on the sidewalk

Me, singing in the shower

By Dashiel, 5th grade

Click the media player above to listen to the poem read on KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1 by Mackenzie, a WITS Youth Advisory Council Member. The background music is “The Jazz Piano” by Bensound from bensound.com. Produced by Susan Phillips.

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, KPFT 90.1 and KTRU 96.1.

Original post: September 22, 2015

Robin at AWP

Writers in the Schools (WITS) Houston and our awesome sister programs from across the nation will be attending #AWP16 the AWP Conference in Los Angeles later this week. If you have ever thought that your city, town, or community could use a program like WITS, we hope you will join us in LA for some great conversations.

In the Bookfair, you can find us in Booth #1001. We will have some cool writer stuff to give away! Our membership meeting — which is open to newcomers as well, will be on Friday, April 1st:

10:30 am to 11:45 am @ Room 506, LA Convention Center

And WITS will host six different panels, which are listed on the WITS Alliance website. Panelists will include Jen Benka, Lacy Johnson, Janine Joseph, James Kass, and Renee Watson.  Please join us in LA!

 

 

 

 

 

Three former WITS Writers – Tiphanie Yanique, Kimberly Meyer, and Lauren Berry — will be the featured writers at the Boldface Conference for Emerging Writers in May 2016. Here’s more information from the conference website:

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Glass Mountain Magazine and the University of Houston

Are Pleased to Announce

 

The 2016 Boldface Conference for Emerging Writers

 

Houston, TX, February 8, 2016

 

Accepting applications now for early-bird pricing on registration, the eighth annual Boldface Conference for Emerging Writers will take place at the University of Houston, Houston, TX, May 23-27, 2016.

 

During May 23-27, undergraduate and emerging writers both locally and nationwide will attend a week-long conference at the M.D. Andersen Library at University of Houston. The week will be filled with writing workshops, craft talks, professional panels, readings, evening events around the city, and private consultations with the 2016 Visiting Writers:

 

Tiphanie Yanique (fiction), Land of Love and Drowning (Penguin) and How to Escape from a Leper Colony (Graywolf)

Kimberly Meyer (nonfiction), The Book of Wanderings (Little, Brown)

Lauren Berry (poetry), The Lifting Dress (National Poetry Series, Penguin)

 

The Boldface Conference is open to any writer who has not yet published a book or enrolled in an MFA or PhD program in Creative Writing. Early-bird pricing is available on conference registration at the low cost of $195. Regular registration pricing will begin on March 21st.

 

The conference is largely funded via Glass Mountain Magazine’s annual Write-a-Thon and through support from the Oppenheim Foundation and the University of Houston English Department. Additional support is welcome: http://boldfaceconference.com/write-a-thon/

 

More about Boldface: Boldface registration includes daily group workshops and master classes with Boldface faculty from the top-ranked University of Houston Graduate Creative Writing Program, craft talks and readings by the award-winning Visiting Writers, optional field trips, and daily breakfast and lunch. Transportation to events is provided by volunteers. For traveling writers, housing is available at the university at a low cost. Manuscript consultations with the Visiting Writers is an additional option.

 

For questions, interviews, donations, or additional information, please contact Matthew Salesses at boldfaceconference@gmailcom.

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Well, I’ve had a rotten day,

but let’s look on the bright side.

I can still chew gum and

look cool on my skateboard

and pet my dogs.

By Jeremy, 4th Grade

leaf-65835_1280If I could write a poem anywhere it would be on my tongue

so the words were always moving in my mouth

If I could write a poem anywhere it would be on the clouds

so that people would look up into the sky more

If I could write a poem anywhere it would be on a leaf

so my words would float off into the wind

By Crissy, 4th Grade

Writers in the Schools is offering…

WITS Digital Summer Camp @ Briarmeadow Charter School

 

image_witsdigitalGame Camp (Grades 3-6) combines creative writing with game-based technologies, bridging the writing process with that of game design. Students will become creators versus consumers of media as they use their poems and stories as the foundation for designing original games via platforms including Gamestar Mechanic. Game Camp offers an exciting STEM and IB-aligned game-based writing experience, providing participants with an interactive learning adventure. In addition to improving their writing skills, students will practice creative problem solving, collaboration, systems thinking, and 21st century skills in a fun and engaging environment.
Wired Words  (Grades 6-8) In this hands-on multimedia camp, students will work with a professional writer to create digital writing projects drawn from and inspired by their own worlds. Through individual and collaborative writing exercises, students will learn the importance of writing for an audience and discover innovative ways to utilize online web platforms to share their writing with others. Participants will explore creative writing genres in online and multimedia formats, translating their stories, essays, scripts, and poetry into digital forms including blogs and tumblrs. No prior experience with technology is necessary.

$360 per student (2-week sessions).

Registration Now Open »

 

10. Kianna VallardeSister Cities International is hosting its annual Young Artists and Authors Showcase! Writers ages 13-18 (as of May 1, 2016) may submit prose work (not to exceed 500 words) and poems (not to exceed 200 words) by March 31. Houston winners will be submitted for national consideration in May!

For more information and entry rules please visit their website: sister-cities.org/YAAS

Date: March 11, 2016
Time: 6:30-8pm
Location: 1500 McKinney St.

Join us Friday, March 11th, 6pm for a special Orbit Slam event at the Los Trompos installation at Discovery Green. There will be a DJ, performances by Meta-Four Houston and special guest Desiree Dallagiacomo taking place inside Los Trompos (spinning tops), a beautiful, colorful interactive installation.

This event is FREE and open to the public. No registration required.