Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

poem- peacock poets June 7, 2014

Filed under: Poetry,Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 9:16 am
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She writes in peacock blue ink

Turquoise words like an  equatorial sea–

exotic and dramatic–

vivid colour for vivid dreams,

beyond pedantic black or

boring blue

so dark it’s a black wannabe.

In gatherings of youthful poets

peacock ink predominates.

While pedants declare it’s

a colour coded affectation,

peacock poets know

ink encapsulating sky and sea

makes mere words ethereal–

their metaphor of fundamental creativity.



poem- junction June 2, 2014

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:32 am
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There is an explosion of me

that while not cause for misery

does lend itself to some worry

(as health dictates less mass, you see).


While pondering this desperate state

in search of cover, you apparate

into my view and tell me straight

the simple way you’d lost your weight.


The fact that you think that I was there

to inspire you is laughable, I swear.

You wish to write and I’m aware

that you will do so, we’re a pair


The universe conspires to bring

Strangers together to the thing

that makes the possibilities ring

Opens universal everything.





poem- greeting May 31, 2014

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 10:31 pm
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So welcome are you

the eagle soars to your window

and grebes dance across the water,

all eager to hear your

words on the lake.


poem- when did I become a poet? April 6, 2014

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 2:44 pm
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When did I become a poet?

Was I not born a poem

Washed into the world on sorrow & pain

Spun thru desire?

Do poems require words

or only bodies?

Each life is a poem

unfolding without words

that every lover reads

and feels deep in the soul.

Every mother is a poet,

birthing baby poetry.


We are born as poems.


in lieu of the Golden Shovel poem I meant to post from yesterday’s NaPoWriMo prompt.  I’m still not finding a poem I want to use as the inner poem.  I wonder if a stanza of another poem will suffice?  Otherwise I’m looking at mile long poems!


quote- identity October 30, 2013

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:24 am
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“You’ve always been what you are.  That’s not new.  What you’ll get used to is knowing it.”

(Cassandra Clare, Clockwork Angel p. 308)

In 2009, my novel Grace Awakening was finished, and I was staring stunned at the proof book, dumbstruck that I had actually done it.  I had written 150,000 words over six months, and created a world that other people were reading and liking.  I reflected this amazement to a friend who’d been reading my work since I was a kid, and he wrote, “You’re a writer.  You’ve always been a writer.”

I stared at those words on the screen for the longest time, trying to absorb them:

I am a writer.

Not a wanna-be writer.  Not a hopeful writer.  Not a someday writer.  I am a writer, and I have *always* been a writer.

It probably took me 3 years to fully accept that identity.  To embrace who I am.  When my friends started introducing me, not as a teacher, but as a “Shawn, the published author,” it was very profound.  It still gives me goosebumps

Then I started paying attention to the comments on my blog posts, and realised that I am also a poet.

I am a poet.

I was a little quicker to accept that idea, since it is so closely related to being a writer.  I have this image of poets as slightly crazy people, who live in weird houses, dress in crazy outfits, and have a lot of cats.  Well, two out of four is enough to face the truth.

I have embraced my creative self, and it is getting weirder and weirder.  The other day I seriously considered buying a wooden caravan style RV (I’ll try to take a photo of this beauty).  My husband would freak out at the very idea.  There probably isn’t enough room for my shoes, but I looked at that caravan, and was ready to hit the road. To become the wandering Bohemian I’ve beaten down my whole life.

Who I am is not new.  My friend was right, I’ve always been a writer.  I’ve been chattering away telling stories since I could talk.  I shared stories I wrote in grade 3 show and tell.  I won my first poetry prize in grade 4.   I’ve always been who I am.

Now that I’m not just accepting it, but I’m embracing it, I feel alive.  I feel like I am fulfilling my destiny.  I feel RIGHT in my world, because I am able to be who I am supposed to be.  I write.  I can not do things because I need to write.  People come to my blog, and tell me how my words make them feel, or think, or…  My words are who I am.

Who are you?


listen May 24, 2013

I am here

to listen.

I want to savour each word

of the story you create

to make meaning of the world.

I am here

to listen.

I want your words to come

clear on the air

to my ear,

each one a gift.

I want to listen

So speak your passion

in whispers and shouts




like leaves in fall

wisked away by wind.

I want to capture each one

so your story

becomes part of my story,

so I can raise my voice

sing my song,

tell my tale.

We share together:

I am;




Tonight I was at the Shuswap Association of Writers Coffee House, presented annually in conjunction with Word on the Lake Festival of Readers and Writers.  I heard some amazing writers and poets read, some were easier to appreciate than others.  I like when the poet savours his/her words, and crafts the reading like a performance piece, so you can experience the poem.  I dislike when a poet tosses off meaningless dribble, and then explains it, and the explanation is a better poem than the poem, itself.  Bad form, famous poet, bad form.  There was great stuff to enjoy, though, as there always is.


like you April 26, 2013

Filed under: Poetry — Shawn L. Bird @ 9:20 pm
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I wrote letters to poets

Sandburg, Dickinson, Twain,

Shelley, Petrarca, Yeats or Keats,

it was always the same.

“Thank you for your words.

“I like what you  say.

“Your message was heard.”

Each time someone’d said

“You can’t send a note

for those poets are dead;

it’s been years since they wrote!”


On the blog roll are poets

who live and who breathe

and I can write them notes

and some encouragement leave.

“I like that you’re writing

“I like that you’re here

“I like that you’re sighting

on truths without fear.

“Thank you for your words.

“I like what you  say.

“Your message was heard;

I’ll be back here one day!”


Did I miss anything? February 26, 2013

Filed under: Poetry,Teaching — Shawn L. Bird @ 11:40 am
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I was a new teacher, substituting in an English class when I came across  Tom Wayman’s poem “Did I Miss Anything?”.  Every teacher hears the question several times each week as students who’ve missed a class come to see whether their grades will be impacted by their absences.  It gets frustrating.  Wayman’s poem reflects the frustration of teachers called to respond to that question.

Of course, the student missed something!  If I am doing my job properly, just knowing the task assigned is not sufficient.  It is in the preparation for the assignment and the discussion around it that the greatest learning can take place.  The opportunity to consult with peers, to explore their understanding as well as your own helps you to grow as a learner.  Of course, students miss something when they are not in class; moreover, the class misses something as well. 

Your presence improves our learning, too.  We miss you.  You miss us.

In most cases, the world will not change dramatically because a student isn’t in class, but Tom Wayman imagines a time when that could be the case.  His ironic tone matches those felt by those harried teachers who must attempt to synthesize instruction and discussion into a few seconds when they tell the student about the missing assignment while readying the class for the new lesson.

Read Tom Wayman’s poem: Did I miss anything?  The answer is, “Of course, you did!”


The value of poets June 21, 2012

Filed under: Poetry,Writing — Shawn L. Bird @ 1:42 pm
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Discovered this great quote on the blog “Greater Umbrage”

“You see, in the beginning was the Word. And the Word was made flesh in the weave of the human universe. And only the poet can expand this universe, finding shortcuts to new realities the way the Hawking drive tunnels under the barriers of Einsteinian space/time… To be a true poet is to become God.” 

~ Dan Simmons

Wow.  It makes me feel crazily powerful!  How daunting.  How magnificent.  How humbling!


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