Wednesday, April 01, 2015

did you ever know "Abou Ben Adhem?" -- Day 1 of NaPoWriMo 2015

[please click on the picture to make it a bit larger] 
[I am the boy in back]

What do you know about Ben

Who do you relate him with?  Yourself?
Abou Ben Adhem I'm talking about
Though many have never heard of this man
He was my favorite poetry hero
Besides Kilmer's "A Tree" and nursery rhymes,
I'd recite Abou Ben Adhem from heart
Always have loved the 'rhymes, still repeat most
"A Tree" was first  memorized, no big deal
Why do I like Abou Ben Adam still? 
He, my kind of guy, 'loved his fellow man'
One room school, heard it over and over
My older school mates memorized it too

Him and Leigh Hunt I try to imitate   
_ _ _
Photo and Poem Copyright © 2015 Jimmiehov
All Rights Reserved

 - NaPoWriMo 2015 is a project to write a poem every day in April, National Poetry Month.  I am not sure that I will write one every day, we will see.
 - Today I'm linked with Magaly's "What Sparked Your Poetic Heart?" starting Day 1 of Poems in April at the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads
and Week One Countdown: Day 1 of NaPoWriMo 2015
 - There generally were between eight and ten in our one room, grades 1-8, country school in rural Nebraska.  I am not really sure that the others memorized Abou Ben Adhem for me to hear. 
 - I first met Ben from my mother's poetry book that I found when doing some childhood snooping.  My teacher was happy that I had memorized it as my literature project.  I still have her little book.
 - Below is what I found at
Abou Ben Adhem

By Leigh Hunt 1784–1859 Leigh Hunt
Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase!)
Awoke one night from a deep dream of peace,
And saw, within the moonlight in his room,
Making it rich, and like a lily in bloom,
An angel writing in a book of gold:—
Exceeding peace had made Ben Adhem bold,
And to the presence in the room he said,
"What writest thou?"—The vision raised its head,
And with a look made of all sweet accord,
Answered, "The names of those who love the Lord."
"And is mine one?" said Abou. "Nay, not so,"
Replied the angel. Abou spoke more low,
But cheerly still; and said, "I pray thee, then,
Write me as one that loves his fellow men."
The angel wrote, and vanished. The next night
It came again with a great wakening light,
And showed the names whom love of God had blest,
And lo! Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.

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At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 4:16:00 PM, Blogger Sherry Blue Sky said...

Well this is such a treat from beginning to end - love the old schoolhouse and kids in the photo. A gentler time, in memory. I enjoyed your poem as well as your favorite poet's. Thanks for your comment on my poem, Jim. Occasionally I post a poem from way back then....LOL.

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 7:16:00 PM, Blogger Debi Swim said...

Kilmer's "A Tree" and nursery rhymes were my firsts, too. And, I had forgotten "Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase)" so thanks for reminding me with your poem.

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 7:34:00 PM, Blogger Magaly Guerrero said...

This sounds like you. I tend to move my head or a hand when I read your poetry; there is always a bit that invites movement (even your comments do that).

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 7:34:00 PM, Blogger Magaly Guerrero said...

P.S. You still have the same smile!

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 7:38:00 PM, Blogger Hannah said...

What a great tribute to your inspirations, Jim. :)

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 8:06:00 PM, Blogger Other Mary said...

Great picture to go with your verse. Well done, Jim. I hope you have a great month!

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 11:15:00 PM, Blogger Susie Clevenger said...

Love the photo. My father told me so many stories about his schooling in a one room schoolhouse. Great poem!

At Wednesday, April 01, 2015 11:35:00 PM, Blogger Ella said...

I love the photo, the connections and insight! I had not heard of this poem-I enjoyed your take on the prompt~

At Thursday, April 02, 2015 1:07:00 AM, Blogger grapeling said...

it's good to know your inspirations ~

At Thursday, April 02, 2015 4:45:00 AM, Blogger Kerry O'Connor said...

It is sad that the days of memorizing poetry are by and large gone (although we still have an annual festival in which students recite poetry and you would be surprised how popular it is among teens).

At Thursday, April 02, 2015 6:03:00 AM, Blogger Gillena Cox said...

your photo is so precious, lucky you though flanked by those beauties (◕‿◕。)
thanks for sharing that Leigh Hunts poem, its my firts reading; and your poetic words are wonderful

thanks for dropping in to read mine

much love...

At Thursday, April 02, 2015 8:06:00 AM, Blogger Marian said...

This really is a treat! And now I feel inspired to make my kids memorize some poems, haha. Thanks so much for sharing, Jim.

At Thursday, April 02, 2015 9:49:00 PM, Blogger Rosemary Nissen-Wade said...

Oh, so thrilled to read this! I loved him too, and for many years could recite the poem from memory. One of the poems my Dad used to read to me for bedtime stories. I can still hear his voice and see his facial expressions, as he liked to deliver it with great gusto.


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