This month’s playlist is all fun and games. Listen to Lorde, Lady Gaga, Luke Bryan and many others while you deal a hand of cards or play a board game. This might be the playlist to help you win it all.
Did you know one of the oldest board games in the world is the family favorite Chutes and Ladders? An ancient Indian game, it is believed to have been played as early as the 2nd century B.C.
Originally a game of moral instruction for children, the ladders stood for virtue and the snakes, bad choices and evil. In the original Hindu game, the snakes outnumbered the ladders portraying the struggle in leading a successful and morally correct life. Eventually this popular game found its way to England and was then brought to the United States by none other than Milton Bradley in 1943. Who knew a simple childhood game could have such a meaningful origin?
Family board games have experienced a resurgence in popularity since 2012. Unique games like Settlers of Catan introduced us to a different set of rules and mechanics than the traditional board games like Monopoly, Sorry, and Trivial Pursuit. This style of board gaming, also known as the Euro-game has gained in popularity in the United States as a result.
Even still, our favorite games are often the ones we played with family and friends during our childhood years. While the old games may hold a special place in our hearts, there are also plenty of new and exciting board games being created in which to build new memories too.
What is your favorite board game? Write a poem about the object of the game and the strategy it takes to win. For an even bigger challenge, write a Haiku.
Here’s a recent poem from Rick we enjoyed:
— for Carol
What fear hides in our skin has no faith in steel or design.
Through years it moves like water colors in rain,
mingles itself in moonlight, and gravity has its way,
pulling us into the dream where we have no wings.
And then there is the retrofit crew, the rusted plates
that bark like some ancient dog as the car passes over them,
a blessing in disguise, drowning the Pacific waves
that sound so much like rushing air or the last whispers
of the day as we fall into sleep, hiding in the ear
like the ocean in a shell, the dark closet of descent.
Below the magnificence of the coast is a postcard,
but strength does not come from the book of splendor,
it is the breath of independence that takes in the world
and floats the blue palette of the sea in your open eyes.
Photo by Vladimir Agafonkin. Creative Commons via Flickr.
How to Write a Poem uses images like the buzz, the switch, the wave—from the Billy Collins poem “Introduction to Poetry”—to guide writers into new ways of writing poems. Excellent teaching tool. Anthology and prompts included.
“How to Write a Poem is a classroom must-have.”
—Callie Feyen, English Teacher, Maryland