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Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April is Poetry Month - Poem a Day

My first order of business is to thank Avon Books, which is a subsidiary of HarperCollins Publishers for the free book. They began a new Avon Reading Group and I love reading so I joined.:) The contest was if you commented you might get a free book. You know when I hear anything free I'm there!:) So I commented on the excerpt I'd read from the first guest author, Jenna Petersen's Her Notorious Viscount. Of course, with my life, I completely forgot about the whole thing. So I was surprised to find an email from Wendy Ho, Assistant Publicist, who told me I was getting a free book. Today I received it and I'm thrilled, because it means I'll be able to read the whole book and even review it too.:) So I told Wendy I would be putting Avon Reading Group into my blog and I urge anyone who loves romance novels to go there too. For years they have been my guilty pleasure and when we went to BEA I collected a lot of signed ones from the authors.

Next I want to let everyone who doesn't know, that April is Poetry Month. What this means is you are urged to write or read a poem a day. I'll do both, because I get the newsletter from and I am going to post my poem every day both on the PAD website and here in my blog. I've included the link so you can read the poems posted on this website and maybe join the group and write your own. So even if I don't write anything else for my post, you will be able to see the poem I wrote that day! I hope this will encourage my readers to try writing their own and please put them in the comments here. It gives me such a kick to be in the month of April, because it forces me to write poetry which I love and love to write, but which I give up to write prose.:)

I started writing with poetry so it will always have a soft spot in my writing heart.:) Even if you don't write or read a poem a day, you can still participate. There is a day in April known as Poem in Your Pocket Day when you are encouraged to bring your poem for the day with you and put it in someone else's pocket. It can be an original or a found poem. Either way you are giving someone a poem. You can be creative about it too. Slip it into your child's lunch box or put it in your husband's pants pocket. Sometime during the day they'll find it and it should at least give them a smile.:) The goal, of course, is to further the art of poetry and give people a deeper appreciation of it.

The PAD website gives you a prompt each day and you can use that or do your own thing. Here is today's prompt and my poem:

Origin -"It can be the origin of a word, person, plant, idea, etc. Have fun with it." (taken from the website Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer)

My origin
by Barbara Ehrentreu

They came together
He from a town now long
buried under the polished
boots of Nazi soldiers
who sent the inhabitants
to slaughter as if they were cattle
Grodnah, a name on a map
devoid of its humdrum bustle
erased as he is now gone
She from the middle class
second and third generation
American, young eager,
her mother’s sharp retorts
ringing in her ears reminding
her she was not like others
too willful, too fat.
He embracing her youth, her family,
the life he had yearned to achieve
to escape from the oppression of
his own.His father’s disdain at
the lifestyle he had chosen
forsaking the long black coat and felt hat
traditions never for him
She finding a comfort
an ease - no demands.
He rejoicing in the folds of her love
She damaged early
the sting of her mother’s words
burned into her flesh
He unable to cure with his
gentle ways and boisterous manner
She punishing her body with endless diets
ignoring her talent for needle and thread.
He the amateur neighborhood showman
the salesman, the artist, the shnook
She always pushing
He content to sit and dream
Her sewing, his drawing
untapped fruits
Both unaware of their abilities
Passing fears, inhibitions, boisterousness,
as they sleepwalked through their lives
pretending they had chosen the right path.
copywrite 2009 by Barbara Ehrentreu
So I hope you are inspired to either write or read a poem or do both each day of April.:) Also, if you decide to write one please share it with me in the comments or join in at the PAD blog.:)
Until the next time thank you to my readers and please madcapmaggie, contact me so I can get your free book to you.:)


  1. What a sad and yet inspiring tribute to lives well lived. I know the stories we see in our grandparents can be shockingly focused, but often I believe they are repeated for generations. In different ways perhaps, but various portions of their stories come to life. You've inspired me.

    Thank you,

  2. I don't do poems but I'm impressed. Great work!

  3. Jan,
    So where is your poem?:) Thank you. Origin for me meant my own origin and this is what came out when I thought about it. They did have sad lives, because they seemed happy, but each of them never did what they should have been doing. He was a salesman almost all of my life, but he was a great mechanic and carpenter. Also, he wasn't trained as an artist, but had natural ability.She was also selling in the store they had and then did bookkeeping. She was an excellent seamstress and designed her own clothes and mine! She also did needlepoint and did her own designs. I always felt each had a sadness they never expressed.

  4. Shirley,
    You can share a poem you love here too! Thank you!!


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