Poetry Friday–Solstice Treasures…

1–Solstice stars-12-14-2018

Happy Poetry Friday and Happy Winter Solstice

I have a menagerie of treasures to share today. I’ve been star gazing for about the last week, late at night and have taken in an abundance of stars via my window. I’m starting with a winter solstice poem to welcome this new season…



Deep into the dark nights of December
lies our longest night and our shortest day,
a doldrum day too short to remember
but night worthy of star gazing away.

As weather forecasts may lead one awry,
you might start star-watching earlier on.
Gaze up into that cool cobalt blue sky
some clear wintery night you come upon.

Magical stars will leave you mesmerized–
Capture your embrace in a timeless gaze–
Fueling your senses, leaving you surprised,
totally transfixed, in a star struck haze.

When you’ve stair-stepped down from the boundless sky,
Soul-filled with celestial satisfies…
remember your winter solstice ally,
guard Mother Nature’s treasures for all eyes.

© 2018 Michelle Kogan


1-Flashlight night book 12-20-2018

Next I’m sharing Matt Forrest  Esenwine’s  wonderful book, FLASHLIGHT NIGHT, that I won from his website recently. His book’s about a magical adventure three children take in the evening  via a “flashlight.” The story Matt wove and the art images by Fred Koehler are a perfect marriage in this picture book. If you haven’t read it I would encourage you to find a copy–it sweeps you up and draws you in throughout their journey–resting you quietly down as the children drift off to sleep.

1-flashlight night bk spread-time forgotten tomb 12-20-2018

   One of the many sites the three children discover… I really like the contrast and play of light that Fred created when the flashlight illuminates an area.

1- flashlight night bk spread-guarding a peculiar door-12-20-18

I love the words here, as they beg us to turn the page and find out where 
the door will lead us…

Thanks Matt for writing this mysterious and enchanting “FLASHLIGHT NIGHT” adventure!

1a- Buffy Silverman Poetry SWap poem 12-20-2018

I’m also sharing my lovely winter poetry swap poem and gifts that I received from Buffy Silverman. In addition to the poem and gorgeous image, Buffy also sent me this  Karner Blue Butterfly which her daughter knitted, and that she found on my website. The Karner Blue in addition to be gorgeous is unfortunately  endangered, and for this reason I like to share it so more will become aware of its plight. Thanks for the poem and  gifts,  Buffy! Sending a Thank you also to Tabatha Yeatts who began and organizes this special holiday poetry swap!

1-Buffy Silverman Poetry Swap poem 12-20-2018


Her eyes hone in
on treasures–
feather, burrow, dew

Her pen considers
speckled, cozy, cool

Her brushstroke brims
with color–
yellow, umber, blue

Her canvas swirls
with wonder–
poem, painting, jewel

© Buffy Silverman, 2018

Serendipitously, Buffy Silverman is hosting this weeks Poetry Friday Roundup at her Blog, Buffy’s Blog–thanks for hosting Buffy, I’m looking forward to viewing what you are sharing.

About Michelle Kogan Art, Illustration, & Writing

Michelle Kogan is an artist, illustrator, instructor, and writer, creating colorful allegorical figure, flora and fauna paintings and children's illustrations, which have a sensitivity to endangered species, and the environment. She is an art instructor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Evanston Art Center and offers Plein Air Painting Workshops at nature venues in the Chicago area including the Lincoln Park Conservatory, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, and Lurie Gardens at Millennium Park. Visit her online Etsy Shop at: http://www.MichelleKoganFineArt.etsy.com and her website: http://www.michellekogan.com
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18 Responses to Poetry Friday–Solstice Treasures…

  1. Glad you’ve been star gazing in the dark nights of December! Thanks for these treasures and for sharing my poem, Michelle.

  2. lindabaie says:

    “poem, painting, jewel”, so beautiful for you and from Buffy, Michelle. I do love, too, your “remember your winter solstice ally” & the painting ‘peace’. Happy Solstice!

  3. haitiruth says:

    Wow, so many treasures in this post! Ruth, thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

  4. katswhiskers says:

    I could imagine your artwork painted onto a window, Michelle – sans black paint, relying on the inky sky. Loved the line, ‘When you’ve stair-stepped down from the boundless sky,’ – though confess I first read it as ‘star-stepped’… which I think adds to the appeal of stair-stepped, for me. 🙂 And lovely collection from Buffy. (That leaf shape poem, bookmark, too!) Thinking of you across oceans of sky and wishing you a blessed Christmas.

  5. What beautiful poems, Michelle – yours is reflective and thoughtful, Buffy’s is full of imagery and emotion! (On a side note, the Karner Blue is our official state butterfly here in NH) Thank you also for featuring our little book…I’m so glad you enjoyed it enough to share ti with your readers!

  6. Tabatha says:

    Your collection of solstice-treasures is leaving me starry-eyed, Michelle! I am not surprised by y’all’s talents, but I didn’t know that Buffy’s daughter can knit butterflies — how cool is that?!

  7. mbhmaine says:

    What a rich post of treasures. Starlight, sunlight and flashlight. Thanks for shining some light with your words and art, Michelle!

  8. Liz Steinglass says:

    Your painting of the night sky is absolutely gorgeous! I love the scale of the big darkness and the word peace. Thank you!

  9. maryleehahn says:

    Buffy captured you perfectly in that poem! I wish I could give the gift of of rural darkness to all the urban kids in the world who have no idea what it’s like to look up into pure black and see a sky FILLED with stars, including the Milky Way.

  10. Susan Bruck says:

    Oh my, such an abundance of wonder here, Michelle! Thank you for sharing all of it. I love your solstice poem and painting. I haven’t heard of the book, but I will track it down. I remember having adventures by flashlight when I was a kid.
    And your poetry swap poem is delightful, too–it looks like a lot of fun!

  11. margaretsmn says:

    You are a star-gazer and a plein-air poet. Beautiful gifts of the season.

  12. Goodness, the richness of all this! Thank you for taking the time to share!

  13. laurashovan222 says:

    Beautiful poem, Michelle. These lines caught my attention: a doldrum day too short to remember/
    but night worthy of star gazing away.” And that butterfly! I’m a knitter and I’m going to look for that pattern.

  14. Joyce Ray says:

    Michelle, Thanks for the Solstice light, the starry painting and your poem. I also love Matt’s Flashlight Night. My copy is waiting for my granddaughter to be a bit older and we can tiptoe to the playhouse and read it by flashlight. Buffy’s poem is perfect for you, and I love the rhythm and the oo sounds. Karner Blues like the pine barrens in Concord, NH, though I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Karner Blue. The city tries to maintain habitat there.

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