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i thank You God for this most amazing

When I taught, I used e. e. cummings not just during poetry lessons, but to point out to students we did not always have to follow rules when writing. Following Cummings’ writing, I told students to get thoughts down on paper and we could edit later.

Cummings did not break rules of writing in his poetry. As we see in the first line of this poem, he capitalized two words.

I took the message as opening my eyes and ears to the world around me. As I walked this morning, I noticed birds chirping. One scrambled to hide under a truck parked along the street. In another place, there was a smell of something rotting, maybe someone fertilizing. The wind was chilly, but, when the sun emerged from hiding, i warmed me.

The sounds, sights, smells, touches of the world awaken my senses on those walks. They are like the flow of water I hear from a distance as I approach the river that tumbles over the edge. When I am mindful, I sense nature in a fuller way.

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

We took this picture in Yellowstone.


About ivonprefontaine

In keeping with bell hooks and Noam Chomsky, I consider myself a public and dissident intellectual. Part of my work is to move beyond (transcend) institutional dogmas that bind me to defend freedom, raising my voice to be heard on behalf of those who seek equity and justice in all their forms. I completed my PhD in Philosophy of Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA. My dissertation and research was how teachers experience becoming teachers and their role as leaders. I focus on leading, communicating, and innovating in organizations. This includes mindfuful servant-leadership, World Cafe events, Appreciative Inquiry, and expressing one's self through creativity. I offer retreats, workshops, and presentations that can be tailored to your organzations specific needs. I published peer reviewed articles about schools as learning organizations, currere as an ethical pursuit, and hope as an essential element of adult eductaion. I published three poems and am currently preparing my poetry to publish as an anthology of poetry. I present on mindful leadership, servant leadership, schools as learning organizations, how teachers experience becoming teachers, assessement, and critical thinking. I facilitate mindfulness, hospitality retreats. and World Cafe Events using Appreciative Inquiry. I am writing and researching about various forms of leadership, how teachers inform and form their identity as a particular teacher, schools as learning organizations, hope and its anticipatory relationship with the future, and hope as an essential element in learning.

24 responses »

  1. Especially liked the idea of not having to follow rules for writing. I attend a writing group that is always listing rules for writing. Good to hear the ideas, then like to do my own thing. I thank God every morning for another day in this beautiful world.

    • I do too. I discovered that students who did not write well struggled to get ideas on paper if they were too focused on rules. It was easy enough to clean things up later. Sometimes, the stronger writers helped their friends.

  2. I love this poem. e.e. is one my very favorite poets, and it as a great treat to see this one tonight. Here is a wee one of mine written after a trip home yesterday from the mountains of NY. It was so lovely. Many thanks for your blogs I do so enjoy them. Warmest greetings, Tasha

    Green pillows of spring
    Heap themselves on the hillsides
    welcoming my gaze.
    Tasha Halpert

  3. I love his poem style. Not many can do like e.e.

  4. MicheleMariePoetry

    Beautiful poem! Love his work.

  5. Enjoyed so much…it is a beautiful poem. Am confused though, did you author or was it Cummings?

  6. Beautiful words and photo…

  7. Beauty (another name for God) is with us, shared through our senses. Thanks for your post

  8. ee cummings was tremendously liberating for me as a Perfectionist/writer.

  9. A great reminder to step outside of the rule book when it comes to writing 🙂


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