Saturday, April 17, 2010

James Carter - Clouds Like Us

Clouds Like Us
a poem for Mr. Wordsworth
          ! !
           ! !
You're n e v e r lonely as a cloud
for like the sheep, you're with the crowd.
And then there's always loads to do
like soak a fete or barbeque.

Clouds are water - boiled you know.
We're recycled H20.
Stream to sea to cloud to rain
ever moving through a chain.

How we love it when it's warm.
For then we cook a mighty storm.
When it's time to help some flowers
we'll brew up those April showers.

Going back to our CV-
we’ve a range of skills you see
snow to hail and mist to fog -
to forming shapes for you to spot!

Sunny spell? Oh we'll be back.
You'll need some rain - and that's a fact.
We're high as kites and cool as jazz.
That's clouds like us - our life's a gas!

© 2010 James Carter. All rights reserved.

James Carter had me at "hello." You see, my first contact with his work was when I ran into his book Time-Travelling Underpants. Sweeeeeet!!!! For me, the instant love was not that "underpants" is considered a funny word and he'd used it. Nope. It's that it was used in such a way that I laughed and was intrigued - a fresh image created, and one that made my mind race with possibilities. I admit it coulda been a short term love affair if I'd read the book and it wasn't smart, clever, funny, and wonderfully varied. But it was!

I highly recommend a trip out to his website to listen to him perform a few of his poems. I listen to track one, Electric Guitars, and I think "how can I get him into my school?!?!" What makes me so happy is that the poem works without any accompaniment but comes to life in yet another way with it, and a really fun way, at that. Which, it turns out, is how I feel about so much of his poetry... and just one reason I'm so excited to have James Carter here today as part of 30 Poets/30 Days.

Yesterday we saw Lesson from Bobbi Katz. Tomorrow... Things To Do If You Are King Kong by Elaine Magliaro! For more on 30 Poets/30 Days and ways to follow along, please click here.


Greg Pincus said...

In a lovely little bit of kismet-y timing, Kelly Fineman has a post up about and featuring...

William Wordsworth's I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud

tanita✿davis said...

All the best poets combine whimsy and information. I would have loved to have this one when teaching the water cycle!

Lee Wind, M.Ed. said...

I like seeing the concrete moments in this poem - and you're right, I went and listened to "electric guitar" - AWESOME!
Truly performance art meets poetry (or would that be poetry meets performance art?)
great stuff.
Thanks James and Greg!

Anonymous said...

I love the clouds and rain along with the text! The Electric Guitars poem rocks, and I loved the air guitar poem, too!


BethMooreSchool said...

Awesome! I love love love the punctuation-clouds. Very cool.

Jane Heitman Healy said...

This poem has everything--rhyme and rhythm, poetic devices, imagination, educational value, and lots of fun!