Thoughtful Thursday

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Thoughtful Thursday: Joy Harjo, Our New U.S. Poet Laureate

Last month, Joy Harjo was named the U.S.’s 23rd Poet Laureate.  She is the first Native American to be appointed to this role.  She takes the position in September 2019, following U.S. Poet Laureate Tracey K. Smith, whose work has been featured often in Thoughtful Thursday posts. Harjo was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1951, and is a member [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: A Small Needful Fact

There will be just one poem for today's Thoughtful Thursday.  "A Small Needful Fact",  by Ross Gay, pays tribute to Eric Garner, whose life was ended in 2014 by a police officer's illegal and deadly chokehold during an attempt to arrest him.  The medical examiner ruled the death a homicide.  A Staten Island grand jury decided not to indict the [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Summertime Poetry

As we near mid July, today's Thoughtful Thursday celebrates Summer.  We do so with a variety of poems about summer from a variety of poets.  We start with a classic from Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906), who "In Summer" waxes eloquently about a song for a summer's day.  Then we have a delightful ode to a "Firefly", a familiar summer [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Commemorating the Fourth of July with Langston Hughes

It's Independence Day!  We celebrate this Thoughtful Thursday on our nation's birthday with two poems from one of our most beloved poets, Langston Hughes (1902-1967).  In "I Too",  Hughes imagines a future in which he will truly be seen as an American.  In "Let America Be America Again", he laments that the principals of freedom on which our nation was [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Politics and Poetry

Politicians campaign in poetry and govern in prose, former New York governor Mario Cuomo once said.  But we are didn't hear much poetry during this week's Democratic Presidential Candidate's debates.  So for today's Thoughtful Thursday we offer a few political poems.  We start with "America" from Claude McKay (1889-1948), a bittersweet ode to our nation. From Adrienne Rich (1929-2012) [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Father’s Day, Continued

Hope all you GCP dads had a terrific Father's Day!  In your honor, today's Thoughtful Thursday presents three poems which pay tribute to fathers.  First, a sentimental,  heart-warming salute to hard working Dads everywhere in "Only a Dad" by Edgar Guest (1881-1959).  Then, a GCP favorite, "Those Winter Sundays" by Robert Hayden (1913-1980), which also recognizes a father's daily [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Poetry For Pride Month

In celebration of Pride Month, today's Thoughtful Thursday features works by LBGTQ poets.  Some of these poets have been featured in many Thoughtful Thursdays, like June Jordan (1936-2002) and Audrey Lorde (1934-1992), and others, like E. Ethelbert Miller (b. 1950) and Blas Falconer, are new to these pages. The voice of the other, the ones less heard, is strong [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Commemorating Memorial Day

Happy Belated Memorial Day!  We are just a few days past the holiday, so on this Thoughtful Thursday we will extend the celebration with a few inspirational quotes honoring the men and women in the military who have died while serving our country. Have you talked with your children about the significance of Memorial Day, and how much the [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: Alabama, What Kind of Times Are These?

Alabama.  Yesterday Alabama governor Kay Ivey signed into law a bill that outlaws almost all abortions performed in the state. Doctors who perform abortions in Alabama now run the risk of arrest, felony conviction, and a sentence of up to 99 years in prison. As the New York Times recently noted, this sets up a direct challenge to Roe [...]

Thoughtful Thursday: It’s National Mental Health Awareness Month. How are You Doing?

New month, new celebration: did you know that May is National Mental Health Awareness Month? Yep, since 1949 May has been designated Mental Health Month in the U.S. to raise awareness about the importance of mental health and to erase the stigma associated with mental health disorders. And a good thing, too, since we as a people (especially we [...]