Skip to main content

Greg McVerry

Just published today's podcast with "Girdles of Liberty" follow through RSS or on @pocketcast

Greg McVerry

Published today's "Starved Trees" dedicated to students of color who must come to terms with fact that being black or brown can and does kill you

Greg McVerry

Writing with Observations #EDU407 #clmooc #poemsofpresence #writingcommunity

2 min read

When we write we often capture what we observe. Scientist write formal observations. Mathematicians may observe patterns. Literary experts see poetry. Each discipline takes its own spin, but the basic skill remains.

Every writer should carry an observation notebook.  In fact journaling may improve student writing and positive perceptions of learning  (Connor-Greene, 2000). Yoru journal maybe a blog but the best authors never pockets empty of pens and paper.

Jot what you see.

Types of Observation Posts

An observation post can also provide a blogger stuck without an idea. Just look around and pcik something, jot down a few ideas in your notebook, and then write a post.

Ordinary Object

Choose an ordinary object like a pencil or a coffee cup. Describe it in great detail. For a challenge choose a metaphor or emotion to with the object.  Stare at your piece. Write down even the most minute details. Go to your blog and draft the post.

Take a Walk

Go outside. Every ten minutes stop for one minute and jot down what you see. Or just fall down, gaze up at the sky, and write.

Extraordinary Objects

Pick weird stuff. Jot down and share your description. 

Text Structure

Ever notice how the angles in YouTube videos change quickly and without transitions? These are called jump cuts. Pick a genre you are unfamiliar with and observe the text structure.

Time Lapse

Pick the same subject. Write about it in some time interval for a set period of time.


 Connor-Greene, P. A. (2000). Making connections: Evaluating the effectiveness of journal writing in enhancing student learning. Teaching of Psychology, 27(1), 44-46., P. A. (2000). Making connections: Evaluating the effectiveness of journal writing in enhancing student learning. Teaching of Psychology, 27(1), 44-46.

Greg McVerry

Published "Peppered Moth." builds off of yesterday's poem "Atone" and talks about about the survival skills of POC in our schools

Greg McVerry

Published today's . Today's work "Atone"

George Floyd
Trayvon Martin
Breonna Taylor
Ahmaud Arbery
Tamir Rice
Oscar Grant
Eric Garner
Philando Castile
Samuel Dubose
Sandra Bland
Walter Scott
Terrence Crutcher
Tony McDade

Greg McVerry

How a poem on cultural melanism came about #clmooc #poemsofpresence

2 min read


Interesting story on how I got there.

An animal walked outside my window
bigger than a coyote,
but can't be a Grey Wolf?? Could it???

Turns out its an Eastern Coyote or Coywolf (though I do believe the Grey Wolf has returned to Connecticut, regardless of the legend of Putnam).

Trying to identify the species (found no prints or scat) lead to research on the word cline which turned into a poem comparing our partisan divide along fake geographic boundaries to the real geographic boundaries of evolutionary differences

Learning about cline lead me to the Peppered Moth.  While researching the history of the Peppered Moth I learned the term industrial melanism.

Given that anything cool in America starts off gay and/or Black I tied this into a term I coined as  "cultural melanism." White people poetry always about nature. There are not really any people doing .

Yet we owe so much of our form to African Diaspora Art and when another Black Man dies screaming, "I can't Breathe" while a jackbooted thug literally has his knee on his throat...

Felt wrong not to use my priiviledge to acknowledge this pain. To just write about pretty trees during a pandemic when majority of people have to stare at walls not the glorious landscapes of East Haddam.....

I think today I will continue with the Peppered Moth. Talk about how getting "whiter" is an awful but effective survival skill for Black students in school that doesn't work on law enforcement.

Greg McVerry

I just published today's "Cline Poems" a reflection on the geography of partisan divides

Greg McVerry

Greg McVerry

Greg McVerry


Prev | Home | Join | ? | Next