Over the past year, I’ve been teaching poetry and gift economics at the Crestmont Boys’ and Girls’ Club (B&GC) , and this semester,  we are building our Poetry for Trash (PFT) stations.


The Hope Builders, a group of retired carpenters, regularly volunteer with non-profit organizations in Bloomington, such as the B&GC, and they offered to help us build four poetry for trash stations! One of the stations will be installed at the Crestmont B&GC and another is going to be installed at the Bloomington Community Orchard, and we are planning on taking a field trip in April out to the Orchard so that the kids can watch it be installed and so that they can help plant the new seeds for the spring!


The kids had a great time learning to use Power Tools!

And this guy says he’ll be a future president:


One of the kids went to town and made a PFT station for the kids. Poets love cats and I’m sure they also love it when we pick up trash.

Here is a poem by T.S. Elliot, “The Naming of Cats”


The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,
It isn’t just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I’m as mad as a hatter
When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.
First of all, there’s the name that the family use daily,
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo, or James,
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey —
All of them sensible everyday names.
There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:
Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter —
But all of them sensible everyday names.
But I tell you, a cat needs a name that’s particular,
A name that’s peculiar, and more dignified,
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?
Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,
Such as Munkstrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum —
Names that never belong to more than one cat.
But above and beyond there’s still one name left over,
And that is the name that you never will guess;
The name that no human research can discover —
But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.
When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:
His ineffable effable Effanineffable
Deep and inscrutable singular Name.


We are still looking for homes for the other two stations, so if you know of someone or an organization that believes poetry is worth trash, let us know!



Much thanks to the hope builders, Craig and Steve:

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