Friday, July 12, 2019


After having experienced some vision loss and eye surgery in the spring, I began to wonder if I'd ever be able to read and write as I've always done. Anyone that already knows me, knows that I already use adaptive strategies and tools to both read and write. When those strategies and tools didn't seem to help, I became weary and frustrated. Would things ever be the same for me?  Could I continue to share a love of reading with others?  Could I inspire readers with my writing?  

Although I wasn't able to read very well, I was able to read book titles of the picture books that I loved so much. One evening, as I was visiting the book store, I discovered Lori Degman's treasure, Just Read. Although I wasn't able to read it, I knew I had to have it (I collect books about books and reading and libraries). I brought the book home and there it sat on my nightstand.

Then one day, I picked it up and took it to my magnifying CCTV. I began to read and realized that nothing had ever stopped me from doing what I wanted in the past, so why would I let my current circumstances stop me now?  Degman's book encourages readers to read no matter where or when or how. Her words were the perfect reminder to me to do the same!  A while later, I wrote this poem as a reminder to myself to not let anything or anyone stop me from achieving my goals.

by Amy Merrill

My whole life
I've never let
or anything
stop me
from doing
what I want
or need to do

I've made
my way
through trials
and tribulations
through storms
and disturbances
over bumps
and hurdles

I've dealt
with loss
and sorrow
I've made it through
difficult times
and tests of patience
Each time
I've persevered

This time
is no different
I will make it through
I will do
What needs
to be done
I will endure
I will succeed.

It's Poetry Friday!  Join in the Poetry fun by stopping over to Deowriter

Happy Reading!

Friday, March 15, 2019

My Journals

Creatiting  in my journals is one of my favorite things to do. The  poem that I wrote describes what I love to do inside the pages of my journals.  I also had some fun playing  with alliteration.

My Journals

Journal pages
beckon with their blankness
waiting to hold what is dear
Pregnant with possibilities
meander with memories
call to my creativity
gathers scraps from life
collages delicate clippings
Journal pages
filled with treasures
now hold what is dear.

Today the Poetry Friday Roundup is being hosted by Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe.  Be sure to stop by for lots more poetry love!

Thursday, March 7, 2019

An Unwanted Goodbye

Today over at Reading to the Core, the Poetry Friday round up is happening, as well the celebration of International Women's Day.

The poem that I've written and am sharing today has been rattling around in my head and bubbling up in my journals for some time now. Once again I'm taking a bold step in sharing it. But I feel I need to share it with the world.

An Unwanted Goodbye

two years have gone by
Since you told us
You were sick.
It seemed a death sentence
Doctors tried their best
To offer solutions.
You tried your best
You fought so hard . . .
You didn't want to give up
You fought so hard
You had your pride
It was so difficult
for you to show defeat
but the time came
You continued  to fight
to hold on
You wanted to stay for us
You worried about us
You held on tight
You loved us so
You continued to fight
but your body couldn't fight anymore
You were in there
Trapped by sickness
a disease that held you captive
We knew  you were in there
Unable to speak
Unable to share
Unable to move
Your eyes said it all
We knew you were there
Fighting --
until the battle was lost
We prayed together
Held your hands
It was ok . . .
to let it all go
We told you so
You heard that last prayer
You felt our loving touch
We held your hands
You heard the call
He was waiting for you
It was time to go
You knew it was so
You took your last breath
You fought a good fight. . .
The ultimate of wars.
We are proud of you
We love you so
It was heart wrenching
to let you go. . .
We had no choice
Now we hold you
in our hearts, my dear
We will always love you . . .
and miss you so . . .

Friday, March 1, 2019


Today I'm sharing a poem that I finally wrote. It's been rattling around in my head for some time. Watching kids sssenble a puzzle that had a piece missing and looking at a single word that I had scribbled on a sticky note, led to this poem.


Pieces scattered
on the floor
It takes time.
to gather them
I try to fit them
as they once were
But they won't fit
as they did before
I try
and try again
fitting pieces
together -
differently this time
but it works
The landscape
is the same
yet different
A piece is missing
gone forever. . .
But still
I was able to

Head on over to the Poetry Friday Celebration that is being hosted at Teacher Dance.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Ordinary Magic

I'm Celebrating this Past Week!

Writer and educator, Ruth Ayers at created Celebrate This Week, a community of writers that write about their week’s celebrations, whether ordinary or extraordinary. I decided to gather some of my celebrations from this past week here, today.

Poetry Celebration #1!

Each Friday, not only on my blog, but at school, I like to take the time to celebrate poetry. I share a “Poetry Break!” with the entire school, by reading a poem on the morning announcements. Yesterday, to wrap up Random Acts of Kindness Week, I read Eileen Spinelli’s “How to Love Your Little Corner of the World.”  It’s one of my favorite poems. It's one I've copied into my Poetry Journal and created a collage for. It was appreciated by many staff members as well as some students who commented that they liked the poem that I shared on the announcements. I love that I can reach the whole school by sharing a “Poetry Break!” on the announcements!  It's a great way to begin our day.

Poetry Celebration #2!

A second celebration around poetry also occurred yesterday. I call each Friday, Poetry Friday and share poetry with my Book Clubs (also known as my reading intervention groups). I read aloud poetry, have s collection of poetry books for students to peruse, give out poems to read and sometimes illustrate with a sketch, and many other activities that involve poetry. Students love Poetry Friday in my Book Clubs!  I know this because they tell me so each week. As a matter of fact, yesterday, one of my fourth grade boys commented, “Why do we only get to have Poetry Friday?  Why not Poetry all the time?”  My response was that we also had many books that we would be reading.  Another student replied, “Yeah, we should have Poetry Friday and Poetry Monday!”  I thought about how excited these kids were to have time built into their day to spend with poems. I decided that I will add poetry into each day that I see my Book Clubs. After all it takes a minute or less to read aloud a poem.

I Won a Scholarship!

I'm so excited that after applying for a scholarship, I won!  The scholarship will allow me the opportunity to attend the New York State Library Association’s annual Conference!  I've not yet been able to attend one. So this May I'll be attending the NYLA SSL Annual Conference!  Here's a link to the list of amazing speakers I love learning from authors, educators, and other speakers!  I also submitted a proposal to present at the conference. I'm still waiting to find out if it was accepted.

New and Improved Reader and Writer!

To wrap up my celebrations for this week, I'll add that I signed up for two writing courses through SUNY Broome’s  Continuing Education program. I can't wait to participate in them!  I've also been in touch with a couple of authors regarding the NYSRA Charlotte Book Award and not only considering their books for the Ballots but also to set up interviews that I'll feature here.

I feel as though each day I come closer and closer to the reader and writer that I once was. Not only do I feel that I am nearer to her, but I feel as if I am a new and improved improved reader and writer. I'm a better version of each because all my experiences from the last few years have had a tremendous impact on my growth and learning.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Full Moon Dreaming

I'd like to begin today by saying a very special thank you to the Poetry Friday community of readers and writers. You have welcomed me and my poetry and applauded my bravery. I'm so glad that I chose to be Brave and share my writing. I've loved your feedback and support.

Today's Poetry Friday host is Robyn from Life on the Deckle Edge Please stop over to find lots more poetry love.  I adore the moon and watching it change each night. In anticipation of Tuesday's Super Snow Moon, I wrote this poem . . .

Full Super Snow Moon
Photo taken by Amy

Full Moon Dreaming

Something in your light
Something in your glow
Makes me feel alive
Feels like home
Something in your energy
Something in your power
Makes me feel alive
Feels like healing

In the dark you give light
In the dark you give life
Makes me feel alive
Feels like love
In the dark you give beauty
In the dark you give hope
Makes me feel alive
Feels like faith

You are full
You are the moon
I am full
I am the human
I see you
You see me
Let's dream together
Of all that can be.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Starting Over

Today I am being Brave once more, as I am sharing my own poetry here for today’s Poetry Friday celebration.

Starting Over

How many times
can I  try again?
How many times
can  I  start anew?
How many times
can I begin something fresh?
How many times
can I go ahead once more?
How many times
can I walk a path
that I've walked before?
How many times
can I take a road
that I've traveled so often?

As many times as I need to
because each time I do
I learn something new.

Poetry Friday is being hosted by children's author, Laura Purdie Salas. Click on her name to visit her site for lots of poetry posts.