Free Range Readers

Nurturing Self Reliant Readers and Writers in K-6 classrooms

Poetry Friday Delight



Thanks this week to My Juicy Little Universe for hosting Poetry Friday. I have chosen a poem about writing by one of my very favorite writers, Naomi Shihab Nye. I was browsing through some of my collected poems, and this is the poem that spoke to me for this week. I am thinking ahead to school and the writing that I want to do with my students, and this poem inspires me to write. Maybe it will do the same for you! Have a great weekend!  😉


The Time

Naomi Shihab Nye

Summer is the time to write. I tell myself this

in winter especially. Summer comes,

I want to tumble with the river

over rocks and mossy dams.


A fish drifting upside down.

Slow accordions sweeten the breeze.


The Sanitary Mattress Factory says,

“Sleep is Life.”

Why do I think of forty ways to spend an afternoon?


Yesterday someone said, “It gets late so early.”

I wrote it down. I was going to do something with it.

Maybe it is a title and this life is the poem.



Author: mnosal

I have been in education for all of my life, in one way or another. After teaching 5th grade at an urban public charter school, I have decided to return to the public schools and to literacy coaching K-5. I also teach and mentor preservice teachers.


  1. Hi, Maureen!

    I don’t think we’ve met before. Thanks for joining us on Poetry Friday. I JUST this week discovered this same poem by NSN…are you also reading the “Note Slipped Under the Door” book?

    I’m moving from K to 2nd grade and looking forward most, I think, to more writing together.

    If you have a moment, tell me more about your PCS. I tried to start one where I live, but the effort was unsuccessful. : (

  2. Hi Heidi!
    I love Note Slipped Under the Door. I forgot about that book, but will pick it up again. Thanks for the recommendation and comment!

  3. This is a new Nye poem – and another one that makes me just sit back and sigh. Love the last lines, our lives are our poems, aren’t they?

  4. Isn’t she so amazing?! Thank you for your comment!

  5. What a great poem. I love it. Thanks for sharing and welcome to Poetry Friday!

  6. Thank you, Doraine!

  7. Thanks for sharing this great NSM poem. Isn’t that always it–we see a shadow, hear a line and it may be a title, but it takes time to work it into a poem. For me, the other seasons bring more poems.

  8. Nice to meet you, Joyce!

  9. This poem is new to me. Thanks for sharing it today.

  10. Thanks for joining us for PF and for sharing a NSN poem that is new to so many of us (me included). She is forever reminding me that random can lead to beauty.

    I am also a 5th grade teacher in the urban corner of a suburban district. Pleased to meet you! (Maybe I already know you? I see you know me, based on your blogroll!)

  11. Hi Mary,
    Yes, I think we have communicated before over various poems! I enjoy your website and follow you on twitter. Have a great school year!

  12. I love Naomi Shihab Nye, but I didn’t know this poem. She pretty much describes my summer. I really was going to write a whole lot more than I did…

  13. Thanks for this amazing poem, Maureen. It’s not one I’d heard before.

  14. Welcome, Maureen! (and I love your name as my 12 y/o is Maureen, though she goes by Mo at home). Thanks for sharing NSN’s poem. I, too, thought I was going to write SO much more than I did this summer…funny how time gets away from you when you have a little bit more of it. =)

  15. Yes! I *always* think summer is going to be writing time for me. It’s mid-August and I’m still waiting for things to settle down so I can settle in and put in some serious time at the keyboard. But we’ve got to live life and “tumble with the river” to be good writers, don’t we?

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