Treasuring Poetry: Meet poet and author Miriam Hurdle

Today, I am delighted to host poet and author Miriam Hurdle for the July edition of Treasuring Poetry.

Welcome Miriam Hurdle

Hi Robbie,

I’m delighted to be your guest on Writing to be Read to talk about poetry.

Which of your own poems is your favourite

Among the published poems in Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude, several poems are my favorites in equal measure for different reasons. One is in the section of Songs of Marriage, one in Songs of Tribute, and one in Songs of Inspiration.

The time I wrote this post, my heart turns to the poem “Healthy Grieving” in the section of Songs of Tribute.

Healthy Grieving

Randy and my husband were true friends.

No appointment needed for

a barbeque, a movie or a game, just

knocked on each other’s door.

The conversation could go anywhere,

no worry about apologies.

When one needed a helping hand,

the other one is always there.

Twelve years was a long time,

such true friendship rarely came by.

People say, “Big boys don’t cry.”

I don’t know why.

Boys have emotion, as we all do.

My husband had never cried,

not until after Randy died.

What inspired you to write this particular poem?

There is a narrative precedes the poem. I wrote the poem to pay tribute to our neighbor, my husband’s best friend who died of a mountain bike accident. Here is the excerpt.

I remember on January 3, 2016. Randy joined us to celebrate my husband’s birthday. We had lunch and saw Star Wars at Irvine Spectrum. It was on Saturday.

The following Sunday, eight days later, his relative came over to tell us that Randy had a mountain bike accident. He and a gym buddy ventured on a long mountain bike ride. The bike hit a vast gap and made a somersault flip. He got thrown off the bike, fell forward and hit the ground, and smashed his head and face.

They rushed him to the close by emergency room but pronounced him dead as soon as the ambulance reached the hospital.

Randy was our neighbor who lived two doors down the street. He was my husband’s best friend for twelve years, ever since he came back to live with his parents. They worked out at the gym together. They enjoyed the Friday movie and pizza day for a while.

After my husband got a mountain bike, he also got one. They biked on the trails in the city. On special occasions, a barbecue dinner was in order. He came over to our house for game nights regularly. A year before he passed away, they switched to another restaurant to hang out in the bar, and I became their designated driver.

Randy was a lighthearted guy, a wonderful friend, a caring son. We missed him very much.

Which genre of poetry do you enjoy writing the most and why?

Whereas a “form” defines the way a poem arranges sounds, rhythms, or its appearance on the page, “genre” is something like the poem’s style. Many poetic genres have a long history, and new poems almost always seek to explore a new aspect of the traditional style and thus to redefine the genre.

Traditionally, there are nine genres of poetry. Three of them remain in the newer inclusion of poetry genres. They are narrative poetry which tells a story, lyric poetry which is musical in tone, and dramatic poetry which is a long dramatic monologue or persona poem.

I would say I enjoy writing narrative poetry genre. Regardless of the poetry forms, I like to write poems that tell the stories. The poem I included above is a good example in which I shared the story of the friendship between my husband and Randy.

As far as poetry form, I enjoy writing free verse which is free of rules and regulations. It doesn’t follow a consistent rhyme scheme, meter or musical structure. For the fun of learning, I also write blank verse which follows a stricter structure with precise meter. In addition to Haiku, Tanka, I have written a Shakespearean Sonnet, a Pantoum, several acrostic poems, two Villanelle, and one one-syllable poem (all the words used in the entire poem are single syllable words).

Which genre of poetry do you enjoy reading the most?

I enjoy reading narrative and lyric poetry including poetic song lyric. One example of narrative poetry is a poem by the American Poet Linda Pastan in which she tells a story about her daughter.

To a daughter leaving home

When I taught you

at eight to ride

a bicycle, loping along

beside you

as you wobbled away

on two round wheels,

my own mouth rounding

in surprise when you pulled

ahead down the curved

path of the park,

I kept waiting

for the thud

of your crash as I

sprinted to catch up,

while you grew

smaller, more breakable

with distance,

pumping, pumping

for your life, screaming

with laughter,

the hair flapping

behind you like a

handkerchief waving

goodbye.

This poem is about the poet teaching her daughter to ride a bicycle. The title suggests that her daughter is now old enough to leave home. Pastan cleverly extends the metaphor of the bike as part of life’s journey. When I read this poem, I identify with the poet the joy of parenthood, with the sentiment of missing my daughter when she grew up and has gone on to her own journey.

I can’t talk about poetry without talking about music. I’m a singer of classical, traditional, and some older pop music and memorized many song lyrics for solo performances. The poetic song lyrics influence the flow of my poetry writing.

Examples of poetic song lyrics are, “Yesterday” by the Beatles, “Memory” from the Musical Cats written by Trevor Nunn, and “Killing Me Softly” written by Norman Gimbel & Charles Fox.

What is your favourite poem?

My favorite poem is a popular one by Robert Frost. Its signature phrases have become so ubiquitous, so much a part of the individual life and business alike. I like it because of its message applicable in my life.

I have come to crossroads many points in my journey. As reflected by Frost, I couldn’t take “both,” tried to look down both paths “as far as I could.” Many times, they both were “equally” “fair” but no guarantee. Ultimately, it was my decision that “made all the difference.” Knowing that I would never “come back,”, I willingly took the responsibility for the road I chose to travel with no regret.

The Road Not Taken 

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

I would like to include the trailer for Songs of Heartstring created by Diana W. Peach at https://mythsofthemirror.com

Songs of Heartstrings Amazon  https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07K1S47W9

About Miriam Hurdle

Miriam Hurdle is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). She published four children’s books at twenty-six years old. Her poetry collection received the Solo “Medalist Winner” for the New Apple Summer eBook Award and achieved bestseller status on Amazon.

Miriam writes poetry, short stories, memoir, and children’s books. She earned a Doctor of Education from the University of La Verne in California. After two years of rehabilitation counseling, fifteen years of public-school teaching and ten years in school district administration, she retired and enjoys life with her husband in southern California, and the visits to her daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughters in Oregon. When not writing, she engages in blogging, gardening, photography, and traveling.

Find Miriam Hurdle

Website/Blog: https://theshowersofblessings.com

Amazon Author’s Page: https://www.amazon.com/Miriam-Hurdle/e/B07K2MCSVW

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17252131.Miriam_Hurdle

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mhurdle112

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Miriam-Hurdle-Author-100123351515424

My review of Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude

Songs of Heartstrings: Poems of Gratitude and Beatitude by [Miriam Hurdle]

Songs of Heartstrings is a collection of poems and essays featuring the vast array of life experiences by the author. Miriam Hurdle has encountered both the best and the worst of life through the death of her husband’s close friend, her own treatment for cancer, the birth of her daughter and the close relationship of her parents. Her wonderful joy in life and strong faith in her religion shine through in her poetry and give a lot of insight into her strong spirit and ability to stay positive despite the curve balls life has thrown her way.

This book also demonstrates Miriam’s love of nature and features poems about her garden, a hummingbird and even a spider. Her photographs and pictures are lovely and compliment the prose. 

My review of Tina Lost in a Crowd

Tina Lost in a Crowd by [Miriam Hurdle, Victoria Skakandi]

Tina Lost in a Crowd is a charming book for children about two young school friends who attend a busy concert with Tina’s parents and get lost on their way to the restroom.

I enjoyed the character of Tina, a lovely and friendly girl who demonstrated politeness and respect towards both her teacher and her parents as well as consideration towards her friend. She has sufficient presence of mind not to panic in the scary situation of being lost in a big crowd.

The depiction of Tina’s family life and her mother’s interest in her and eagerness to plan some fun family outings for the summer vacation are heart warming and lovely to see in a children’s book. I liked the fact that Tina’s mother made a picnic for her family and Tina’s friend, Erica, to enjoy at the concert with good, wholesome food.

The illustrations in this book are a real treat and every page is a visual delight. I would recommend this book to parents and caregivers who like books that encourage good family values and level headedness by children in difficult situations.

About Robbie Cheadle

IMG_9902

Robbie Cheadle is a South African children’s author and poet with 9 children’s books and 1 poetry book.

The 7 Sir Chocolate children’s picture books, co-authored by Robbie and Michael Cheadle, are written in sweet, short rhymes which are easy for young children to follow and are illustrated with pictures of delicious cakes and cake decorations. Each book also includes simple recipes or biscuit art directions which children can make under adult supervision.

Robbie has also published 2 books for older children which incorporate recipes that are relevant to the storylines.

Robbie has 2 adult novels in the paranormal historical and supernatural fantasy genres published under the name Roberta Eaton Cheadle. She also has short stories in the horror and paranormal genre and poems included in several anthologies.

Robbie writes a monthly series for https://writingtoberead.com called Growing Bookworms. This series discusses different topics relating to the benefits of reading to children.

Robbie has a blog, https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/ where she shares book reviews, recipes, author interviews, and poetry.

Find Robbie Cheadle

Blog: https://www.robbiecheadle.co.za/

Blog: robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com

Twitter: BakeandWrite

Instagram: Robbie Cheadle – Instagram

Facebook: Sir Chocolate Books

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124 Comments on “Treasuring Poetry: Meet poet and author Miriam Hurdle”

  1. Frank Prem says:

    Fine interview Robbie and Miriam. Enjoyed reading it and getting to know Miriam a little better.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Thank you for having me over for the interview, Robbie. I had fun answering the questions. You’re so generous to include your reviews for Songs of Heartstrings and Tina Lost in a Crowd. I really appreciate that!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Reblogged this on The Showers of Blessings and commented:
    I’m over at Writing to Be Read with Robbie Cheadle interviewing me for her “Treasuring Poetry” post. I had fun talking about my favorite poems. Please head over to visit and let us know what you think.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. […] over at Writing to Be Read with Robbie Cheadle interviewing me for her “Treasuring Poetry” post. I had fun talking […]

    Liked by 2 people

  5. delphini510 says:

    Robbie and Miriam, year u are both so interesting and warm human beings. I really have enjoyed the whole interview. Bless.

    Miriam

    Liked by 3 people

  6. edwardky2 says:

    Reblogged this on Ed;s Site..

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Great interview, ladies. Thanks for hosting Miriam, Robbie.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. Having followed Miriam’s blog for a number of years I really enjoyed this view from the outside. Well done both for an interesting, informative, and enchanting interview.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. What a joyful interview–the painful loss of a friend, the joy of a daughter growing up, the road that could lead anywhere. Poetry does have such sweet moments.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Vashti Q says:

    What a lovely interview, Robbie! I loved the Q&A. I always enjoy reading about Miriam. Her Randy poem is beautiful and touching. I read and enjoyed Miriam’s poetry book. I also loved the book trailer. Congratulations to Miriam!🥰🎉

    Liked by 3 people

    • I appreciate your support, read, and reviewed my poetry book, Vashti. We have a memory stone in our yard to remember Randy. He was one of a kind person. We missed him.

      The trailer created by Diana is beautiful. I could watch it again and again, not as my own book trailer, but simply admire the artistic creation.

      Thank you for your visit and comment, my friend. ❤ 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

    • Hi Vashti, thank you for visiting. I also enjoy Miriam’s poetry, blog, and Tina Lost in a Crowd is delightful.

      Liked by 2 people

  11. Reblogged this on Robbie's inspiration and commented:

    Today I am delighted to feature poet and author Miriam Hurdle as my Treasuring Poetry guest over at Writing to be read. Thank you for hosting us, Kaye Lynne Booth.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. balroop2013 says:

    It’s so nice to see Miriam here and discuss her love for poetry. I like all the three poems she has shared. Frost is one of my favorites and this poem is so inspiring.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. Enjoyed the interview, Miriam and Robbie. The poems are lovely ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  14. Jan Sikes says:

    This is a wonderful interview with Miriam! And I love each of the poetry excerpts. Thank you for hosting, Robbie!

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Wonderful interview! Great books from this author.

    Liked by 3 people

  16. Darlene says:

    A wonderful interview with Miriam. I love the poem about your husband’s friend. My son just lost a dear friend that he has had since they met at school 40 years ago. He is taking it very hard. Yes, men cry.

    Liked by 3 people

  17. What a great post! The Road Not Taken is my favorite poem as well, and I love Killing Me Softly. Miriam, your tribute to your husband’s best friend was beautiful! 😊

    Liked by 3 people

  18. What a lovely discussion of poetic genres. I enjoyed Miriam’s poetry book and the poem she chose to feature. And two wonderful shares from Pastan and Frost. It was fun to see Miriam’s trailer here too. Thanks for another exceptional post, Robbie, and thanks to Kaye Lynne for hosting.

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Great to see Miriam here. I enjoyed reading poem about out her husband’s friend Randy. And poems about parenthood and letting your children go always get me, so I relate to her enjoyment of “To a daughter leaving home.” Thanks for featuring Miriam here and hi Miriam!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I could write many essays about To MY Daughter Leaving Home, Barbara. It’s a joy and a scary thing to watch one’s children growing and going away. I put training wheels on my daughter’s bicycle. I was so afraid I couldn’t keep up to protect her, but she just took off without the training wheels touching the ground!

      Thank you for stopping by, read and comment. I appreciate that, Barbara! I’m working on your interview also. I know you’re busy and not in a hurry.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Hi Miriam – I’m in the middle of “grown and flown” and it’s indeed bittersweet. Whenever you want to send me your interview is fine with me – thank you!

        Liked by 2 people

        • The first time I had this emotion was with my younger sister who is 11 years younger. I took care of her in many ways. When she was grown and expressed independence, I sure had the bittersweet feeling. That helped me to let my daughter be a grown up!

          Liked by 3 people

    • HI Barbara, lovely to see you here. All of the poem’s Miriam shared are wonderful and it is my pleasure to feature her here.

      Liked by 3 people

  20. petespringerauthor says:

    I’m not much of a poetry lover, but I did enjoy Songs of Heartstrings. The Road Not Taken is a classic.

    Liked by 3 people

  21. One can tell, by what she writes and what she enjoys reading, that Miriam is a sensitive, caring person; astute and wise. Thank you for this feature!

    Liked by 3 people

  22. D.L. Finn, Author says:

    Wonderful interview! We share the same favorite poem, Miriam. I have it framed in my living room.

    Liked by 3 people

  23. Jim Borden says:

    another talented artist who has lived a full life, full of diverse experiences…

    Liked by 3 people

  24. memadtwo says:

    This is a wonderful interview Robbie, full of emotional depth. I suspect Miriam is a good friend, as well as a good poet. (K)

    Liked by 2 people

  25. Hi Kerfe, I could see my younger self in Robbie. We share the same expectation for our children especially in the love of reading. She uses many computer technologies such as Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, etc for work and so did I. We have other areas in common also. Thank you for your lovely comment.

    Liked by 2 people

  26. dgkaye says:

    This was a beautiful interview with Miriam. I loved the poetry she shared with us, especially the narrative poetry. Thank you Robbie. ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  27. Norah says:

    Miriam’s poem ‘Healthy Grieving’ and the story behind it is so sad. Such a tragic loss. It always hurts to lose good friends.

    Liked by 2 people

  28. Teri Polen says:

    Really enjoyed this interview, Robbie and Miriam. So sorry for the loss of your friend, Miriam, and I can certainly identify with kids growing up and flying the coop. Beautiful poems.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. This is wonderful poetry, Thank you for the amazing interview with Miriam, Robbie! xx Michael

    Liked by 3 people

  30. I enjoy all of Miriam’s writing. Her poem’s “catch” my heart, and her children’s book, Tina Lost in a Crowd, is a great lesson for all kids.

    Liked by 3 people


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