Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Wildlife

Attention April vacationers: tomorrow, April 26 from 10:00 to noon, the Library is having an animal themed drop-in craft.

You can paint your own animal suncatcher to hang in a window at home. Choose from a frog, hedgehog, owl, or turtle. There will also be foam animal masks available to color.

The crafts are recommended for ages four and up. A parent or guardian must accompany children. Crafts available while supplies last. No registration is required.

After crafting, if the weather is nice, go for a walk on the Windham Rail Trail and look for ducks, squirrels, chipmunks, garter snakes, and other local wildlife.

Take one of these along on your walk:

Peterson, Roger Tory. A Field Guide to the Birds: A Completely New Guide to All the Birds of Eastern and Central North America. [598 PET]

Silverberg, Judith K. New Hampshire Wildlife Viewing Guide. [974.2 SIL, also J 974.2 SIL]

Taylor, James. The Amphibians & Reptiles of New Hampshire: With Keys to Larval, Immature and Adult Forms. [597.9742 TAY]

Monday, April 24, 2017

It's April Vacation!

Although Earth Day wasn't good weather-wise, there is a lot of good that came of it--a support for science and science education, an acknowledgement that the Earth's resources are finite (that includes clean air and water) and something must be done to halt climate change, and, on social media, many people shared photos and videos such as this one on baby elephants:



Since it is April vacation for Windham school children, perhaps you and the kids might want to visit the zoo? To reserve the pass to Zoo New England, start here. (Please have your library card handy.)

Zoo New England does not have elephants, so you'll have to travel a little further south to New Bedford, MA to the Buttonwood Park Zoo, "one of the finest small zoos in the United States." Buttonwood has Asian elephants and the website tells us that the best time to visit the elephants is "mid day."

Monday, April 17, 2017

International Haiku Poetry Day

I'm sure you all know that April is National Poetry Month, but today there is an international celebration taking place--International Haiku Poetry Day.


Today, on The Haiku Foundation website, EarthRise Rolling Collaborative Haiku 2017 is taking place. It is the internet's largest collaborative poem with contributors from around the world. The theme for 2017 is "reconciliation." You can read through the many entries and/or you can contribute a haiku of your own.

Keep in mind that the definition of haiku IS NOT a poem in three lines with 5-7-5 syllables. For purposes of the collaborative poem try to remember that a haiku is "the essence of a moment keenly perceived." You can write in 3 lines, but don't worry about counting syllables--less is more. Don't write your haiku as a sentence. Don't put a title on it. And. don't use the typical poetic devices of simile or metaphor. The keenly perceived moment is what it is--there's no need for the writer to direct the reader by making comparisons. Of course, you can always read, read, read haiku and come to your own conclusion about its form. I'd suggest you start with The Haiku Anthology: Haiku and Senryu in English [811 HAI] or Baseball Haiku: American and Japanese Haiku and Senryu on Baseball [811.041 BAS]. A haiku is about the natural world, while a senryu has the same form as a haiku, but it deals with human nature.

Have fun reading and writing. This is the only post for this week as Kurious Kitty is taking time off. See you next week.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Poetry Friday--"Song of the Rabbits Outside the Tavern"

Since it is finally spring and it's nearly Easter, and, since I saw a little rabbit skittering through my yard, I thought I'd share a rabbit poem today. This one is by Elizabeth Coatsworth (1893–1986). Coatsworth was a talented writer of fiction and poetry for both children and adults. She is best remembered as the author of The Cat Who Went to Heaven [J COA], which won the Newbery Award for children's literature in 1931. If you don't know The Cat Who Went to Heaven, I highly recommend you pick up a copy!

"Song of the Rabbits Outside the Tavern" is found in the anthology assembled by NH poet, Donald Hall, titled The Oxford Book of Children's Verse in America [J 811 OXF]:
Song of the Rabbits Outside the Tavern
by Elizabeth Coatsworth

We who play under the pines,
We who dance in the snow
That shines blue in the light of the moon
Sometimes halt as we go,
Stand with our ears erect,
Our noses testing the air,
To gaze at the golden world
Behind the windows there.

Suns they have in a cave,
And stars each on a tall white stem
And the thought of fox or of owl
Seems never to bother them.
They laugh and eat and are warm,
Their food is ready at hand
While hungry out in the cold
We little rabbits stand.

But they never dance as we dance
They have not the speed nor the grace,
We scorn both the cat and the dog
Who lie by their fireplace,
We scorn them, licking their paws
Their eyes on an upraised spoon--
We who dance hungry and wild
Under a winter's moon!

Dori Reads is the host of this mid-National Poetry Month, Friday Round-Up. Be sure to head there before you start this spring-is-finally-here weekend.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Happy Birthday, Thomas Jefferson!

April 13, 1743, was the date upon which Thomas Jefferson was born. He grew up to write the Declaration of Independence, become the third president of the United States, and, his library formed the basis of what is billed as the largest library in the world--the Library of Congress. (After the British burned Washington in the War of 1812, and with it the collection of the Library of Congress, Jefferson sold his personal library of 6,487 books to the Library of Congress.)

Jefferson and his time in history continue to be a subject of much fascination to writers and readers of both nonfiction and fiction. Here are just three of the books that were published in 2016:

Dray, Stephanie. America's First Daughter. [F DRA, eBook]

Gordon-Reed, Annette. "Most Blessed of the Patriarchs": Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination. [eBook]

Taylor, Alan. American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750-1804. [973.3 TAY]

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

I Kid You Not!

Today, April 12, has been designated as National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day. Yes, indeed, a day devoted to one of America's best-loved comfort foods--the grilled cheese sandwich!

I'm sure for most Americans, grilled cheese sandwich brings to mind melted American cheese, and often accompanied by a bowl of Campbell's cream of tomato soup. If that's your vision, then more power to you, but I like my sandwich made with swiss cheese and sliced tomato, and, if I'm really feeling indulgent, a few slices of crispy bacon!

Others have their favorites, and writer, Heidi Gibson, seems to have more than one favorite--a whole book's worth. Look for Grilled Cheese Kitchen: Bread + Cheese + Everything in Between [641.84 GIB].


Enjoy the day!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Woman of Mystery--Emily Dickinson

It is well-known that Emily Dickinson lived as a recluse. The reasons for her reclusiveness are the subject of much speculation and over the years books, plays, and screenplays have been written putting forth various theories. A new film is coming out titled A Quiet Passion, and in an article about Dickinson and the film, novelist William Nicholson wrote,
Did she suffer from acute social anxiety, or epilepsy, or bipolar disorder? Was she lesbian, a proto-feminist, a religious radical, a sexual pioneer? The poems support almost every theory and feed almost every taste.
Doesn't that want to make you look again at the poetry of Emily Dickinson? You can find her poems in:

Collected Poems of Emily Dickinson. [811 DIC]

I'm Nobody! Who Are You?: Poems of Emily Dickinson for Children. [J 811 DIC]

New Poems of Emily Dickinson. [811 DIC]

Individual Dickinson poems may be found in hundreds of anthologies!


To learn about Dickinson and her family, look for The Dickinsons of Amherst by Jerome Liebling [B DIC] or either of these similarly titled books. Lives Like Loaded Guns: Emily Dickinson and Her Family's Feuds by Lyndall Gordon [B DIC] or A Loaded Gun: Emily Dickinson for the 21st Century by Jerome Charyn [B DIC]. Or, pick up this titillating one, Sexual Personae: Art and Decadence from Nefertiti to Emily Dickinson by Camille Paglia [809 PAG].