Originally published in Castine Patriot, June 5, 2014
Penobscot literary tea showcases students’ poetry prowess
Emma Ferden reads her haiku “Wetlands” at the Penobscot Community School Literary Tea held in Penobscot, Maine on June 3, 2014.
by Anne Berleant
Tea served in china cups and saucers, an array of sweets cupped in frilled paper—and poetry.
For the 13th straight year, the third and fourth grade poets of Penobscot Community School invited their mothers, fathers, grandparents and brothers and sisters to hear their literary creations, and to drink tea.
Reading teacher and librarian Helen Graikowski brought the idea for the literary tea when she came to the school from New Hampshire.
“They love writing the poems and reciting them, and their families coming to hear them. It’s a fun event,” Graikowski said.
The students have been working on their poems since April, Graikowski said, based on different styles and themes. Those ranged from color poems, free verse, haikus, shape poems and cinquain, a poem that uses a five-line pattern. The young poets spent the last week with Graikowski and teacher Darcy Currier practicing reciting and making eye contact.
The rehearsals were evident as Tyler Brenton introduced the event and then Kaylin Welts and Wyatt McKechnie stepped up to the podium as emcees.
Welts and McKechnie introduced the poets and bestowed critical praise after each reading.
Graikowski mused on her students’ creative process: “Sometimes it’s easier to write poems. They don’t have to rhyme…they can be about anything [the writers] want them to be.”
A selection of the poems follows.
By Austin Gray
There was a frog named Bob the frog. He was a peeper. Every night he went peep, peep, peep. When a fly came zzzz Bob would snack him up. Zip zip zip.
By Cami Smith
Across the land
Never mess up
Continuing to be
Eager and great
By Solomon George
My hair is like a bunch of seaweed on a big
My eyes are like misty clouds in the sky.
My feet are as fast as a cheetah running
through the savannah.
My hands are as rough as sand paper.
I live in my nice big house and eat a lot of
By Sebastian Blackwood
soaring, helping, traveling
Iron Man, Hulk, Vouldemort, Dr. Doom
killing, destroying, scheming
evil, dark, villain