A Tribute to Naomi Shihab Nye

Mamool Cookies….delicious!

The editors of Verse of April, Volume II asked writers to choose a modern poet and write a tribute to them, including a poem in their honor. My poem Muelama: To Naomi Shihab Nye was chosen for inclusion in this unique anthology.

I first discovered Naomi Shihab Nye within the pages of the Poetry Archive of the On Being Project. She is a Palestinian/American poet who sees across borders and embraces our differences….whether cultural, religious, linguistic or physical. I feel she is a needed voice for our times. Humbly, I call her muelama, or teacher in Arabic.

If you haven’t read Nye, please look her up. My little tribute can be found here:http://www.verseofapril.com/gabriella-brand

One poet’s small voice….

In February, I was named as the first Poet Laureate of my little Connecticut town. And wow….it’s been like a word bath! This is a two year gig and I’m learning so much. There are about thirty towns in my state with Poets Laureate (notice that you’re not supposed to say Poet Laureates, but rather Poets Laureate! – that’s just one of the things I’ve learned!). And there’s a Coalition of Laureates. (it’s okay to use the plural here because you’re using laureate as a noun, and not an adjective!)

Who knew?

Right now, one of my goals is to enjoy the hoopla of National Poetry Month.

In addition to live readings, I’ve recorded a poem to be shared on the website of the Gyroscope Review http://www.gyroscopereview.com Listen every day during April for some great poetry. One of my poems will be featured on April 21st.

Hamilton Stone Review just published my little poem “Big Girls’ Bunk”. You can read it here. The Hamilton Stone¬†Review #46¬† Maybe it will resonate with some of you if you’ve ever been skipped a grade, or been assigned to the wrong group at camp.