On April 27, 2019, Nye was awarded the Lon Tinkle Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Texas Institute of Letters.
We close our National Poetry Month features with a final poem generously provided exclusively for Lone Star Lit by San Antonio poet Naomi Shihab Nye. Happy Poetry Month, y’all.
This morning an Amish farmer awakens with furrowed fields
spread ready before him his wife stirring molasses
two young sons giggling in a bedroom as they tie on their boots
I wonder what the world looks like to them
Do they feel planted at the center of a thought or somewhere out on a rim?
Thinking of the server who said every morning I am not really a waitress
I am a photographer just doing this to help out a friend
Thinking of the 5th grade girl in a tiny town Eastern Shore Maryland
who read a poem so perfectly in Spanish twice to her classmates
each syllable rippled
then saying she plans to be a translator everyone clapped
In another school blue and pink mural in hall WE ARE ALL WONDERS
why such simple words brought tears I could have stood there
kids babbling around me till the whole place emptied
These days there are men and women who seem to have forgotten
For us to feel lost is not the worst thing
Naomi Shihab Nye was born in St. Louis, Missouri. Her father was a Palestinian refugee and her mother an American of German and Swiss descent, and Nye spent her adolescence in both Jerusalem and San Antonio, Texas. She earned her BA from Trinity University in San Antonio, where she still resides. Nye is the recipient of numerous honors and awards for her work, including a Lavan Award, the Paterson Poetry Prize, the Carity Randall Prize, the Isabella Gardner Poetry Award, the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry award, the Robert Creeley Prize, and many Pushcart Prizes. She has received fellowships from the Lannan Foundation, the Guggenheim Foundation, and she was a Witter Bynner Fellow. From 2010 to 2015 she served as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. On April 27, 2019, she was awarded the Lon Tinkle Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Texas Institute of Letters.