Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Very Least of Me by Len Lawson Offers More for the Summer

The Very Least of Me: Poems and Stories with Reflections, Len Lawson, Poetry
The Very Least of Me by Len Lawson offers far more introspect, nostalgia and reflections of life than you bargain for! While reading his debut work of poetry and short stories, he made us stop and reflect on his journey that many of us can certainly relate to. Through his poetic depiction using the manifestation of pain, connecting to nature and making reference to historical symbolisms, Lawson shows readers his heartfelt identity with the signs of life and prefaces his journey with variable signs of distinction. 

Lawson also offers three short stories which invoke humor, drama and personal reflection. We experienced new, defining messages that were revealed each time we read his poems and short stories. His poem, The Very Least of Me, which is the namesake of his book, is filled with spiritual revelations and ruminations. The poem Colorblind captures the emotion of the poet's perception about how he envisions a colorized world and the polarization of skin color in relation to our existence and relationships. The short story, The Lady of Lonely Pond is an adaptation of fantasy versus a harsh reality, in the soul of insecurity that leads to deadly consequences. Have a tissue handy for that story. This book made us yearn for more from the author.

Len Lawson, South Carolina Poet Len Lawson, The Very Least of Me
Author Len Lawson
Len Lawson began his writing career by winning 3rd place in a middle school poetry contest for Arbor Day and winning Honorable Mention for a high school essay contest on the American flag. Since then, he has been writing poetry, short stories, and began a fiction novel series. He has a master's degree in English from National University near San Diego, California. He teaches English at Morris College in Sumter, South Carolina, where he was named the 2012-2013 Professor of the Year. Len also teaches adjunct English courses at various colleges and universities in South Carolina. When he is not writing books, Len is a freelance editor and a guest contributor to local newspapers.

Learn more about Len Lawson at Be sure to follow his social media channels on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. You can get a copy of The Very Least of Me on and Feel free to contact Len for information on upcoming book signings, readings and book club appearances at This is one summer poetry read that we highly recommend.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Articles Worth Reading about the Relevance of Poetry

We came across some very interesting articles in The New York Times, that is worth the read for poets, writers and poetry enthusiasts. After reading them, tell us what you think. Does poetry matter? Click on the titles to read the articles.

Earning Our Laurel Leaves by Sandra Beasley 

Wipe That Smirk Off Your Poem by Tracy K. Smith

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Summer Poetry Reading

Tell us what book(s) of poetry you are reading this summer! Leave your comment below or post it on our Tea & Poetry Book Club Facebook and Google + pages! It's pure Summer Poetry in Motion!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Poetry Workshop for Kids is Refreshing for Young Poets

Tea & Poetry Book Club member Kym Gordon Moore facilitated the "My Great Summer Vacation Adventure" Poetry Workshop on Saturday July 12, 2014, at the Indian Trail Cultural Arts Center, in Indian Trail, North Carolina. Eleven young poets strutted their poetic swaggar during their open mic readings following the workshop. Check out the full story Poetry Workshop for Kids Rock Indian Trail Cultural Arts Center.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Summer Poetry Good Reads for Kids: "Hi, Koo!" by Jon J. Muth

Jon Muth, Hi, Koo!, Haiku for Children, Poetry book for Kids, Children's Poetry

NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author/artist Jon J. Muth takes a fresh and exciting new look at the four seasons with Haiku! 

Hi, Koo! A Year of Seasons challenges readers to stretch their minds and imaginations with 26 haikus about the 4 seasons. Jon was inspired by his twins when he wrote and illustrated this book. This hardcover book contains 32 pages and is designed for ages 4 to 8, and grade levels ranging from pre-school to the 3rd grade.

Jon J. Muth has written and illustrated many enchanting picture books, including his Caldecott Honor Book ZEN SHORTS and its sequel, the NEW YORK TIMES bestselling picture book ZEN TIES. Other beloved titles from Jon include THE THREE QUESTIONS, GERSHON'S MONSTER by Eric Kimmel, and THE CHRISTMAS MAGIC by Lauren Thompson. Muth lives in upstate New York with his wife and five children. His exquisitely beautiful books are cherished by readers of all ages. Even adults can truly appreciate the beautiful illustrations, that depict a different scene with each haiku on each page. Here are a few editorial reviews:

From School Library Journal
K-Gr 4—Muth, in his author's note, says "haiku is like an instant captured in words." Indeed, that is evident in 26 poems depicting images across four seasons, starting with fall. Muth's well-known panda, Koo, is depicted on a white background with just a touch of blue sky, looking up at swirling leaves.

From Booklist
These very short poems, ranging from fresh to poignant to prosaic, are enhanced by the beautiful watercolor-and-ink illustrations on every page. Reflecting the brevity and imagery of the verse, the spare fall and winter pictures seem particularly fine, while their relative simplicity contrasts effectively with the profusion of color in the spring and summer scenes. 

Learn more about the unique blend of haiku in this book by Jon J. Muth. Hi, Koo! A Year of Seasons gives a different perspective on this poetic expression in an entertaining and fun book of poetry! Click here for more details on how you can order your copy.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Iced Tea Recipes from Stash Tea

Talk about Iced CreativiTEA! Check out these refreshing iced tea recipes, from Stash Tea! That Arnold Palmer Recipe looks pretty tempting! Click here for more thirst quenching recipes!

Friday, July 4, 2014

July Fourth by Freeman Edwin Miller

4th of July, July 4th, Independence Day

July Fourth
By Freeman Edwin Miller

        Hail, glorious morning of Columbia's birth,
            Celestial dawn of freedom! There shall be
        In recognition of thy wondrous worth
            By mighty millions this side of the sea,
            Triumphant crowns of laurel wreathed for thee!
        Welcome thy mammoth pageants, welcome all
            The choral songs and melodies of glee,
        The swelling shouts of praise that gladly fall
        From mighty multitudes in anthems national!

        High hangs the sacred banner, and the stars
            Dance in the sunshine, while the breezes play
        Around the glory of the hallowed bars
            Gleaming in white and crimson; music gay
            Floats from the patriot host and cheers array
        Great shouts around its foldings. Long in state,
            Flag of the brave and free, wave o'er this day
        To bring the world rejoicings which await
        The natal hours of might, the day we celebrate!

        How fears the tyrant in his capital,
            As myriad wires throb with the nation's tale!
        How despot trembles in his castled hall,
            When liberty's wild shouts of power prevail,
            And give their gladness unto every gale!
        Fetters and chains dissolve in holy trust,
            Scepters and swords in puny weakness fail,
        While crowns and thrones make monumental dust,
        And kingly Might is dead, Oppression downward thrust.

        Wide float thy wondrous p├Žans; loudly range
            Thy songs of holy rapture; and the roars
        Of deep-mouthed cannons echo wild and strange
            Through shouting cities; Patriotism pours
            Her full libations on the trembling shores,
        Till earth reels with her triumph; and the voice
            Of millions mad with merriment far soars
        From sea to ocean with entrancing noise,
        Till nations hear the cry and continents rejoice.

        Wave on, thou flag of freedom, and this day
            Still live in hearts of nations! O, thou Land,
        Where Man was first the monarch, where the sway
            Of birth exalted first was broken, stand
            To guard the helpless with a mighty hand,
        And give the weak protection; scout the ban
            Which tyrants utter, and with growing band
        Of noble freemen serve thy primal plan,
        And bind all nations in the Brotherhood of Man!

In celebration of Independence Day 
in the United States of America!

* This poem is found in public domain.