Poetry Friday–Progressive Poem & Poem in the style of Linda Hogan

Progressive Poem Illustration, 2021, © Michelle Kogan, pen & ink & watercolor.

Happy Poetry Friday
and Welcome to the last stop for
the Progressive Poem 2021

Our Progressive Poem began with author/poet Irene Latham and as of last year, the poem baton has been passed on to Margaret Simon at her blog Reflections on the Teche. The poem is written in April celebrating National Poetry Month. Each day a new poet adds a line to the poem. This year Kat Apel at her blog Kathryn Apel began and offered the next poet not just one, but two lines to pick from–and the two line offering has continued down the line. Until yesterday when Christie Wyman at her blog Wondering and Wondering offered me four lines. And I also heard a few requests for some art…

I hope all I have here fits the bill. It’s a wonderfully rollicking poem through nature. I’m offering only one line at the end–hope that’s okay, I’m a bit under the weather as I am recouping from some serious dental surgery from late yesterday.

I wanted to circle the poem back to the beginning and build on Christie’s line too, so here it is…

I’m a case of kindness – come and catch me if you can!
Easily contagious – sharing smiles is my plan.
I’ll spread my joy both far and wide
As a force of nature, I’ll be undenied.

Words like, “how can I help?” will bloom in the street.
A new girl alone on the playground – let’s meet, let’s meet!
We can jump-skip together in a double-dutch round.
Over, under, jump and wonder, touch the ground.

Friends can be found when you open a door.
Side by side, let’s walk through, there’s a world to explore.
We’ll hike through a forest of towering trees.
Find a stream we can follow while we bask in the breeze.

Pull off our shoes and socks, dip our toes in the icy spring water
When you’re with friends, there’s no have to or oughter.
What could we make with leaves and litter
Let’s find pine needles, turn into vine knitters.

We’ll lie on our backs and find shapes in the sky.
We giggle together: See the bird! Now we fly!
Inspired by nature, our imaginations soar.
Follow that humpback! Here, take an oar.

Ahh! Here comes a wave – let’s hold on tight,
splashing and laughing, let’s play until night!
When the Milky Way sparkles, and the moon’s overhead,
we make a pretend campfire and tell stories we’ve read.

Some stories are true and some myths of our time.
I love all of them, but my favorite ones rhyme!
With windows to see other lives, other places
We’ll find and treasure a rainbow of faces.

When you open your heart to a new friend
kindness for another kindles and ascends!

Here are all the stops the poem has made throughout the month

2021 Progressive Poem Itinerary:

1 Kat Apel at katswhiskers
2 Linda Mitchell at A Word Edgewise
3 Mary Lee at A Year of Reading
4 Donna Smith at Mainly Write
5 Irene Latham at Live your Poem
6 Jan Godown Annino at BookseedStudio
7 Rose Cappelli at Imagine the Possibilities
8 Denise Krebs at Dare to Care
9 Margaret Simon at Reflections on the Teche
10 Molly Hogan at Nix the Comfort Zone
11 Buffy Silverman
12 Janet Fagel at Reflections on the Teche
13 Jone Rush MacCulloch
14 Susan Bruck at Soul Blossom Living
15 Wendy Taleo at Tales in eLearning
16 Heidi Mordhorst at my juicy little universe
17 Tricia Stohr Hunt at The Miss Rumphius Effect
18 Linda Baie at Teacher Dance
19 Carol Varsalona at Beyond Literacy Link
20 Robyn Hood Black at Life on the Deckle Edge
21 Leigh Anne Eck at A Day in the Life
22 Ruth Hersey at There is No Such Thing as a God-forsaken Town
23 Janice Scully at Salt City Verse
24 Tabatha Yeatts at The Opposite of Indifference
25 Shari Daniels at Islands of my Soul
26 Tim Gels at Yet There is Method at https://timgels.com
27 Rebecca Newman
28 Catherine Flynn at Reading to the Core
29 Christie Wyman at Wondering and Wondering
30 Michelle Kogan at More Art 4 All

I also have a draft for writing a poem in the style of Linda Hogan’s poem INNOCENCE. This was a poem prompt offered by the Poetry Sisters this month, thanks for the prompt. Look for more of these poems tagged with #poetrypals.


Anticipation of spring sprouts
there underground,
in earth’s soil–
Rich, dry, mushy, sandy
will they emerge?
So may of us partake in this ritual,
and with eagerness of a child
we hope and wait…
Ah somethings pushed through earth
beginning again,
reddish, greenish’
pointy, rocket-like’
beginning anew.

Perhaps soil’s ready for seeds.
Weed her, turn her, mulch her
hope mother nature
keeps her temps more moderate.
Grow little seed
suck in nutrients from
last summer’s mulch,
moisture from soil,
warmth from sun, and
water from my hands
pouring it patiently from within.
I’ll wait and wonder how
seed knows how to grow.

This care – nutrients, water, warmth
will guide me—
If I slow down and center myself
I too outside and within
may grow like seed.

© 2021 Michelle Kogan

Matt Forrest Esenwine at his blog Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme is hosting this weeks Poetry Friday roundup, thanks Matt, be sure to stop by!

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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26 Responses to Poetry Friday–Progressive Poem & Poem in the style of Linda Hogan

  1. gailaldousmsncom says:

    Michelle, your ending line to the progressive poem is perfect. It does exactly what you wanted it to do and more. I love your relaxing watercolor that is a perfect pairing for the amazing poem.

    Your Your Anticipation poem is beautiful. It reminds me of when I would plant flower seeds with my father, when I panted flower seeds with students, and also when I panted flower seeds with my own children. Your line “with eagerness of a child/we hope and wait…” is so true. I love how your lines “Grow little seed/suck in nutrients…to “water from my hands” connects to the last paragraph where the narrator realizes the same “nutrients, water, warmth” will also make the narrator grow “outside and within” if they take “care” of the inside of themselves. You magically weaved a powerful lesson into this poem that we all NEED to do. Your poem would make a great NF PB! Thank you for sharing and I hope you feel better soon.

  2. haitiruth says:

    You finished it up perfectly! Congratulations! (Hope you feel better soon.)
    Ruth, thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

  3. margaretsmn says:

    Thanks for the illustration! Do I have permission to post it on the archive of the poem? The ending does circle back to the beginning with freshness and hope. (I am due to have dental surgery in about an hour, so I will soon feel your pain. Not fun!) Your seed poem is just right, planted and nurtured.

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  6. You couldn’t have ended it better, Michelle. And that illustration is perfect! Well done, and do feel better soon.

  7. rosecappelli says:

    The perfect ending! And thanks for the beautiful illustration to go along with it. Hope you heal quickly.

  8. cvarsalona says:

    Michelle, many thanks for letting kindness become the focus of our budding friendship poem. You closed the poem with ease despite being under the weather and provided a lovely drawing. I sense a sequel with our little friends. As for your poetry pals poem, it is beautifully crafted with a thoughtful closing. Congrats on two wonderful closures that hold gems of wisdom!

  9. lindabaie says:

    “I too…may grow.” your anticipation poem is so filled with hope, Michelle, what I wish everyone could feel on this April’s ending. And I love your painting that tucks all the memories from the poem into a final ‘hurrah’ with more hope of “kindling kindness”. Don’t they sound lovely together?! Thanks for the special post to end April.

  10. Beautful way to end, Michelle! This was the first year I’ve not been able to take part in the poem, but I’ve been following it along and your last line is a perfect conclusion. I also enjoyed your original…love the colors and images and senses!

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  12. Linda Mitchell says:

    Bravo to both! The last line of the Progressive poem is wonderful! Kindling and ascending…action words that inspire us to look up. A great ending. You make it look easy. Was it? The illustration pairs perfectly with the theme of the poem. Well done, you!
    I need to read Linda Hogan’s poem…Anticipation is so rich in spring images. I just want to leave this screen and go get my hands into some warm dirt. Great post this week!

  13. Wonderful the way the progressive poem builds on joy and kindness. Your illustration is so lovely! And I am cheering your Anticipation poem – planting seeds is the way to go!

  14. So glad to catch-up with the progressive poem. Thanks for bringing it to a wonderful end, and for the illustration that accompanies it.

  15. Tim Gels says:

    Michelle, what a wonderful way to end the poem, and a fantastic illustration to go with it!

    • Tim Gels says:

      I was premature with my “send” button–sorry about that. I also enjoyed your draft of “Anticipation.” I like how you’ve put forth a question, “I’ll wait and wonder how / seed knows how to grow,” and then put forth a clue toward the answer. Thanks!

  16. Michelle Heidenrich Barnes says:

    This progressive poem has grown from a small seed, as well—with sunshine, kindness, and friendship, it’s become quite a work of art. And your illustration, Michelle! What a beautiful finishing touch you’ve put on it.

  17. janicescully says:

    Wonderful and perfect ending to the poem! Thank you. It was such a joy to see it evolve and to see your painting of two friends outside, together.

  18. a) I love that your illustration did not assume that both kids in this poem were girls, which many of us girls were doing!
    b) “kindness…kindles…ascends”–what a lot of rich action!
    c) ahhh, closure!
    Thanks, Michelle!

  19. Well done, Michelle! Your final line is perfect, and I love the illustration you created for this year’s poem. Thank you! Hope you’re feeling better soon.

  20. maryleehahn says:

    HUZZAH! What a fabulous ending (and illustration) for this year’s poem!

  21. bmagee10 says:

    Fabulouso finale, Michelle! And your artwork, icing on the cake. 🙂

  22. katswhiskers says:

    What a great wrap-up, Michelle. With the art to complete it and enhance. Thank-you!

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