Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Debra – Spine tingling and a prize!

One of our followers (Hi, Jane!) emailed the coolest thing a few days ago.

Apparently there is school activity for middle grade which involves taking the spines of books and making poetry.



Some are more successful than others. Here are two that remind me I always mean to take up poetry. I have many sets of those word magnets intended for word and poetry play.

To me, poetry is wonderful phrases that make you think and when strung together bring the world and emotion to life.


the witches
paint the wind
step by wicked step

That’s brilliant in my book. Of course I had to try too. So here is mine.

A gentle rain…stinking creek…the river between.
The Lord God made them all.
Go find

Hey, it’s no “witches paint the wind step by wicked step” but I was pretty pleased and I didn’t have a whole library. I have a lot of business and research books. (rejected poem: Dealing with people you can’t stand. Voodoo hoodoo.)

So, make a poem! You can do it!! You don’t have to take a picture. We’ll take your word for it. Type your poem in your comments. Best poem (selected by random generator ::g::) gets a slightly spine crunched copy of FROST MOON.

The Top Down Crew should feel free to add pictures of their poems. Betina has some good ones so hopefully she'll add more pics. :)


chelleyreads said...

this is awesome! i have to try it with my books :)

MarthaE said...

This is very neet and I will try it out tomorrow... too late tonight!

Betina Krahn said...

Deb, I got one for writers everywhere! Just came together quick when looking at my bookshelf. If you don't mind, I'll add a pic to your post to prove it!

Rotten Reviews
Cheap Psychological Tricks
Wisdom Distilled From The Daily


Betina Krahn said...

Okay, I've got a couple more. . . and the pictures to prove it. so what do these say about my library?

Deadly Feasts
Unsuitable for Ladies
Fart Proudly.

That last title was written by no less than Benjamin Franklin!!!


Stockings and Suspenders
The Devil's Cloth

The last one is a small book detailing the history of "stripes" in clothing. Apparently stripes were once considered bizarre and unnatural, even sinful. . . thus the prisoner's garb of stripes. Betcha didn't know that.

Should I put up the pictures?

Deb said...

Oh, my gosh! How cool is that??!! I'm going to try it today with my fifth graders and will let you know later how it went!

Virginia C said...

Rotten reviews, cheap tricks!
Distilled daily from the physchologial wisdom.

For deadly feasts,
Unsuitable ladies fart proudly!

Bras, stockings and suspenders.
Knickers...the Devil's Cloth.

Debra Dixon said...


Put the pictures up!! I love yours. They're great.

This is such fun.

Debra Dixon said...

Chelleyreads and MarthaE-

Yes! Try it. It's loads of fun.

Debra Dixon said...

Deb-- Excellent. We want a full report on how the 5th graders do with this project.

Debra Dixon said...

Virginia-- Yes, I like to see the spine poems in "just words" too.

You'll notice I typed out The witches paint the wind step by wicked step twice. And now three times.

Sorry I just love the way that rolls off the tongue.

Terry Odell said...

So clever - will have to tell one of my original crit partners about this. She's quite the poet herself.

lois greiman said...

I just looked at the pile beside my bed:

The Hollow Hills
Dead to the World
The Silence of the Loons
Hope Rising

Fun game, Deb!

EllenToo said...

Just glanced over at my pile of TBR books and saw..

LSUReader said...

What fun! From books on the sidebar:

Wicked Angels
Risk No Secrets
Charming the Devil

Kathleen O said...

Okay I looked at the next books on my tbr shelf.
Hold On Tight
The Next Best thing
The Summer Hideway..
This is such a unique way of poetry.. I love it!!

Cindy Gerard said...

You all are far too clever! Love it

Deb said...

Debra, some of my students caught on right away, others just looked at me. Here are a couple of clever poems just from the books on my classroom shelves.

The Haunted Burial Ground
Things Not Seen
River of Secrets
Scared Stiff

A Nation of Heroes
Back to Paul Revere
Freedom Train
100 People Who Changed America

It was fun, but quite a challenge for some of the kids.

Anna Dougherty said...

This is really fun! Since its Spring Break around here I could use an extra activity for the kids. We'll try this with their bookshelves later today.

From my desk:

and Falling, Fly
Descent Into Dust
Abandon the Night

Christie Ridgway said...

Love this! From books within a few feet of me:

A Lady Never Tells (Candace Camp)
Mr. Impossible (Loretta Chase)
I Still Do (Christie Ridgway)
The Perfect Neighbor (Nora Roberts)


Debra Dixon said...

Terry-- I imagine a real poet could do some serious work with book spines. (g)

Debra Dixon said...

Lois! You got that from beside your bed? Geez, I had to use bookcases in three different rooms. LOL!

Debra Dixon said...

Ellen-- It's clear I didn't pay enough attention to my romance keepers. I wasn't "connecting" with how they'd go together.

Excellent job, you!

Debra Dixon said...

LSUReader --

Again, I say, I did not value my romance fiction highly enough. I should have dug around more.

Debra Dixon said...

Kathleen-- What I love is that not only is it unique, it really makes you think "poetically." Is that a word? LOL!

There isn't as much "blank page anxiety" because you grab a book and start the thought process.

I actually didn't end up using the first few books I picked up. I kept jumping to the next idea.

Debra Dixon said...


Oh, great. We know how it went.

It's interesting to see how kids think. The first one is my fav.

The Haunted Burial Ground
Things Not Seen
River of Secrets
Scared Stiff

Debra Dixon said...

Anna -- That's awesome.

and falling, fly

I would have killed to have that one around. LOL!

Debra Dixon said...


LOL! Wait! I need to do one from my titles... Hmm...

Midnight Hour
Playing With Fire
When You're the Only Cop In Town

MsHellion said...

It Happened One Autumn
The Last Bachelor
Smooth Talking Stranger
Blue-Eyed Devil
Seduce Me At Sunrise
Tempt Me At Twilight
Mine Till Midnight
Worth Any Price
A Wild Pursuit
Fool For Love
Pleasure for Pleasure
Married By Morning

catslady said...

The Dreamer's Way
Where the Heart Is
Acts of Faith
A Dream Across Time

Last Seen Alive
Presumed Innocent
Mistaken Identy
Buried Evidence
Giving Chase
Scream for Me

Rage of Angels
The Virgin Blue
Dark Angel
Silver Angel
Windmills of the Gods

That was just a few of the books nearby - fun game.

Debra Dixon said...

Mshellion-- ::clap:: ::clap::

That's a serious stack of books to manage. LOL!

Debra Dixon said...


Oooh, the "Scream for me" ending is cool.

Helen Brenna said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Virginia said...

To Bed a Beauty
In Her Bed

ForestJane said...

I think they're all great!

Way to take an idea and run with it, Debra!

I want to make a stack that's a cat related poem, then somehow convince one of my cats to perch on top of it for a picture. ;)

Laurie said...

Wickedly Yours
The Warrior
Take Me if You Can
An Offer He Can't Refuse

Laurie said...

All Through the Night
A Stranger in Her Bed
Your Scandalous Ways
Tempted by His Kiss
Seduced By His Kiss

Debra Dixon said...

Jane-- Hey, don't blame me. This is all your fault. (g) But it's fun for sure.

Debra Dixon said...

Laurie-- Two excellent entries. The first is my favorite. I had trouble doing longer strings of spines, so I'm very impressed when other folks can juggle more books!

MarthaE said...

I pulled these from the review books by my home desk:

8th Confession
Highest Stakes
God Never Blinks

Debra Dixon said...


I don't thik I'm even going to look at a stack of books quite the same again.

Debra Dixon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.