alee_grrl: A kitty peeking out from between a stack of books and a cup of coffee. (Default)
[personal profile] alee_grrl
May and June are months of transition in the academic world, usually marking the end of spring sessions and the start of summer ones. These are also the most common months for graduation ceremonies, at least here in the United States. Bigger universities will also sometimes have December ceremonies, but many school have only one commencement and it is most frequently held in May or June. Commencement ceremonies are all about transition, and the focus of the speeches is usually on inspiration and lessons that graduates should take with them as they move on into the rest of their lives.

In 1990 Theodor Geisel published his last book, Oh! The Places You'll Go. By the time I graduated from high school in 1998 it had become a common gift to graduates, and a common theme for graduation speeches. Dr. Seuss did not avoid difficult topics simply because his target audience was children. Like another famous and inspirational childhood hero, he talked about these things because children needed to hear about them. He framed his ideas in whimsy and imagination, and I think that may have held his very best lesson. Whimsy and imagination are always important, no matter your age.
Read more... )
jjhunter: Ekwara jaunx wearing JJ's glasses; black ink tinted with brown watercolor to depict cute fuzzy cat/bear-like animal (Ekwara jaunx with JJ's glasses)
[personal profile] jjhunter
Now wait a minute, Mr. Socks Fox!

When a fox is in the bottle where the tweetle beetles battle
with their paddles in a puddle on a noodle-eating poodle,
THIS is what they call...


a tongue twister supreme! Today we have three takes on the closing tweetle beetle battle portion of Dr. Seuss' 'Fox in Socks', as well as a bonus reading of the entire poem with commentary by [personal profile] kate_nepveu. You can listen to each via their respective embedded player (note that you may need to click the play triangle twice), or download the audio files by right-clicking and saving-as the hyperlinks.


[personal profile] kate_nepveu - 'Fox in Socks' with commentary [mp3 link]



Three takes on the Tweetle Beetle Battle excerpt by kate_nepveu, mmcirvin, and jjhunter respectively )

Listeners, if something particularly delights or intrigues you about one or more of these recordings, tell us about it in the comments. Likewise, readers, please feel free to share your own thoughts about the experience of recording from 'Fox in Socks'.

Fox in socks, our game is done, sir.
Thank you for a lot of fun, sir.
poetree_admin: Paper sculpture of bulbuous tree made from strips of book pages (Default)
[personal profile] poetree_admin
jjhunter

Dr. Seuss is as well known for his illustrations as for the poems that accompanied them. As an artist, his strong lines and bold colors have a playful, evocative effect of personality practically bursting off the page and hauling the poet (and readers!) along for the ride.

For our challenge this week, artist Tod Wills (also known as [livejournal.com profile] djinni) has created an illustration of an original character very much in the spirit of Dr. Seuss.
Original art by Tod Wills of a two-legged blue critter with a white stripped tail wearing pointed boots and a crumpled stovepipe hat, from which a curling branch sprouts to tease a very long-necked red bird-creature with almost vestigial wings

Your challenge, should you chose to accept it, is to write your own original poem of any length about this mysterious blue critter and his long-necked companion in the style of Dr. Seuss, and comment on this post with the details between now and this Saturday, June 1st, 1:00PM 7:00PM EST. Our judge this round is [personal profile] alee_grrl; the prize is Tod's original watercolor illustration of the art above, which the admins will mail to the winner or a recipient of the winner's choice. Note that anyone is welcome to enter and eligible to win regardless of their affiliation (or lack thereof) with the POETREE community aside from the admins themselves.

Larger version of the art prompt available behind the cut )

To help people get started, let's begin by brainstorming what makes a poem a "Dr. Seuss"-style poem. How would you describe his poetry to someone who has never read one of his books? What type of words or rhythm 'sounds' like Dr. Seuss?

Last edited 6/1/13 by jjhunter
poetree_admin: Paper sculpture of bulbuous tree made from strips of book pages (Default)
[personal profile] poetree_admin
alee_grrl

This week we are celebrating and exploring the poetry of Dr. Seuss. The son of German immigrants and brewmasters, Theodor Seuss Geisel was born in Springfield, Massachusetts in 1904. He developed a love of rhyme as a child, and credited his mother, Henrietta Seuss Geisel, with instilling this love. She had chanted little rhymes to soothe her children to sleep. He started using Seuss, the middle name he shared with his mother, as a pseudonym while attending Dartmouth College. After he graduated from Dartmouth, he briefly attended Oxford University, where he met his first wife, Helen Palmer. After returning from a tour of Europe, he pursued a career as a cartoonist.

Much of his early career was spent doing advertisements for Standard Oil Company. But as World War II approached, Seuss began doing political cartoons for PM, a liberal magazine. He also joined Frank Capra's Signal Corps, where he helped making training films. This is where he learned the art of animation. During this time he was commissioned by Viking Press to illustrate a selection of children's sayings, and while the book wasn't a huge success his illustrations were met with critical acclaim. This would lead to his first children's book, To Think that I Saw It on Mulberry Street. He went on to write and illustrate 44 children's books before his death in 1991, and his works have continued to inspire children and adults. For more on his fascinating life, please see: "Dr. Seuss" Biography, and the Dr. Seuss wikipedia article.

This week we are going to be exploring and celebrating Seuss's poetry in a variety of ways, including a tongue twister-challenge, a new Climbing the Poet's Tree writing challenge, and some in depth exploration of individual poems. There are still open spots if you are interested in participating!

This week's schedule )

Last edited 12/4/13 by jjhunter
poetree_admin: Paper sculpture of bulbuous tree made from strips of book pages (Default)
[personal profile] poetree_admin
POETREE @ Dreamwidth: The poetry of Dr. Seuss: May 27th - June 1st

Write a Dr. Seuss-style poem, record a tongue twister, discuss your favorites, and more - Monday, May 27th through Saturday, June 1st @ [community profile] poetree


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poetree_admin: Paper sculpture of bulbuous tree made from strips of book pages (Default)
[personal profile] poetree_admin
Our first full week back from hiatus (Mon., 5/27, - Sat., 6/1) will be a multi-Hosted week focusing in depth on the poetry of Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss. Please comment on this post if you would like to participate - you are equally welcome to claim a specific day to Host yourself, or to look for collaborators to co-Host a day as group. Specific days are available on a first-come, first-served basis; specific poems can be the focus of multiple days.

What kind of content might you post? We welcome content in any medium that translates, transforms, or otherwise revitalizes how someone might (re)visit one or more of Dr. Seuss' poems. Feel free to browse the tags of previous multi-Hosted weeks, such as Poetry Complements and One Poem In Depth - Julia Stein's "Downtown Women" for ideas, or ask the admins directly - we're happy to help.

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ETA: Want to help signal boost this week? See this related post for official promotion material, including copy and paste-able HTML code.

Last edited 5/23/13 by jjhunter

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