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Hand Candy

19 Apr

Hand Candy

Smooth ribbed slabs
red, yellow, blue
peel apart
don’t mix red
yellow, blue

Sniff clay smell
squeeze, press, roll
make a ball
watch what you
know to do

Plunge in thumb
pinch up, up
round, around
fingertips
grow a pot

Roll through palms
dangle log
sausage, rope
coil in mat
plate, vase, cup

Chew with hands
soft like gum
twist off half
mold, press, stretch
form a dish

Fingernails
bite off bits
jawbreakers,
M&Ms
chocolate chips

Yellow, blue
add them too
squish, press, knead
lump is veined
purple, green

Sniff the old
smell of brown
beg for new
slabs of red
yellow, blue

– Violet Nesdoly

*******************

Who of us didn’t play with Plasticine as kids? This poem is about my memories of Plasticine when I was first introduced to it as a little girl in a one-room country school in Saskatchewan. Busying us with Plasticine was a great way for teacher to keep the little kids occupied while doing lessons with the big kids.

Canadian writer and illustrator Barbara Reid uses Plasticine as her illustrative medium.

  • Besides illustrating books of stories and rhymes with Plasticine art, Reid has also written a Plasticine how-to book: Fun with Modelling Clay. Here’s an excerpt. A list of all of Barbara Reid’s books Is HERE.
  • Find out more about Plasticine on the “About Plasticine” page of her website.

This post is submitted to Poetry Friday, hosted this week by Diane Mayr at Random Noodling.

This post is also submitted to Everyday Poems where the April theme is “Candy.”

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23 Comments

Posted by on April 19, 2012 in Kids, Light, Poetry Friday

 

23 responses to “Hand Candy

  1. Janet

    April 19, 2012 at 7:41 pm

    Roll through palms
    dangle log
    sausage, rope
    coil in mat
    plate, vase, cup

    Wow, this opens a vault of memories!

    Chew with hands
    soft like gum
    twist off half
    mold, press, stretch
    form a dish

    yes, just like that….and when it got old and brown, oh those fresh bars were so enticing!

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 19, 2012 at 7:53 pm

      Why thank you, Janet! I loved new plasticine, didn’t you? Oh for the good old days!

      Like

       
  2. Diane Mayr

    April 20, 2012 at 3:44 am

    I don’t know if it’s changed over the years, but the smell of plasticine was always a big turnoff for me. It was made up for by the time spent rolling recond length “snakes”!

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 20, 2012 at 6:51 am

      I can sure see how one could be turned off by it. I guess I liked it because of what it signified in hours of fun ahead.

      Like

       
  3. Katya

    April 20, 2012 at 4:55 am

    Wow. I remember that smell. And trying to get it out from under my fingers nails. And begging my mother to buy us more.
    When we were in Australia, the kids made models of the Great Barrier Reef in take-out trays using plasticine.

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 20, 2012 at 6:54 am

      Yes, Katya, trying to get it out of fingernails… me too! (Once I made a plasticine hair clip, stuck it to my friend’s hair and got in trouble with her big sister. Don’t remember if it got stuck there or not.) That Great Barrier Reef project sounds wonderful and educational.

      Like

       
  4. jama

    April 20, 2012 at 6:15 am

    Really enjoyed this poem. Yes, I, too, remember that distinctive smell. Wonderful tactile images here — everything so vivid with great momentum :).

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 20, 2012 at 6:54 am

      Thank you Jama… not as delicious as your offerings though. (I wouldn’t want to eat it!)

      Like

       
      • jama

        April 20, 2012 at 7:04 am

        There are some kids who do :)!

        Like

         
  5. haitiruth

    April 20, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    We used to make our own. That was fun because you could add as much food coloring as you wanted until the colors were really vivid. Fun memories!

    Ruth, thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 20, 2012 at 3:36 pm

      Right, Ruth. I’ve made play dough for my kids and grandkids and colored it with food coloring. Never any other clay though. Did you make an actual plasticine-type clay?

      Like

       
  6. Jim Hill (@jimhill)

    April 20, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    Boy, does this bring back the sense memories. I swear I can smell the Plasticine. Good fun!

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 20, 2012 at 3:37 pm

      Hope that smell doesn’t turn your off, Jim! I love that people are still using it, even for book illustrations. What an invention!

      Like

       
  7. Linda Baie

    April 21, 2012 at 5:17 am

    I agree with the others; the smell gets you every time. You tricked me at first with the title. I saw the title, then the photo & thought someone was making candy that looked just like clay! I love the way you played with that concept, your line “chew with hands”, and others. And the links show what talent can do with this-amazing!

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 21, 2012 at 7:40 am

      Thanks, Linda! Aren’t Barbara’s illustrations incredible? The colors are so vivid. I think she paints the clay as well as using it in its original state.

      Like

       
  8. Doraine Bennett

    April 21, 2012 at 6:12 am

    Yes, this brings back so many memories. What a fun poem. When my kids were small, we made our own with flour and salt and food coloring. It wasn’t as firm as the real stuff, but we could still roll some pretty good snakes.

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 21, 2012 at 7:43 am

      I still make play dough, now for my grandbabies. I have a wonderful recipe that uses Alum, and it turns out every time. (I actually love playing with it myself *tee-hee*). It has a smell too (it contains vegetable oil). One could probably add drops of fragrance oil and have a really fine play dough experience–as long as you’re not allergic.

      Like

       
  9. Mary Lee

    April 21, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    Mmmm….the smell of PlayDoh, the smell of StickTack, the smell of crayons, the plasticky smell of new toys…your poem brought it all back!

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 21, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      Thank you, Mary! Amazing, isn’t it, how childhoods all around NA are similar?

      Like

       
  10. Myra GB

    April 21, 2012 at 9:35 pm

    So nice, the colors also look very enticing. 🙂 I remember the time when my daughter would be so fascinated with clay. 🙂 Hand candy indeed.

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 21, 2012 at 9:41 pm

      Thank you Myra. The colors were what I loved too… especially before we mixed them to brown.

      Like

       
  11. Heidi

    April 22, 2012 at 5:24 am

    Plasticene is an extremely underused material in our American playdough culture! In my classroom we used it to make landscapes in learning about physical features, and we really enjoyed watching the Reading Rainbow episode about Piggy in the Puddle, a book we love, which features claymation. I love “chew with hands,” and your stream-of-consciousness wording is very primary indeed!

    Like

     
    • vnesdoly

      April 22, 2012 at 7:53 am

      Thanks, Heidi. What a fun way of learning about geography! And love those claymations too. The interesting thing about Plasticine, as I recall, is that it kept its shape so nicely and didn’t dry out–a big plus over Play dough.

      Like

       

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