Beyond Boundaries

Essays and tidbits from Nancy Bo Flood

Hydrologists look deep inside, finding ancient water in unlikely places

This tree in the Sinai Peninsula may have helped hydrologists discover ancient, hidden water. By Florian Prischl (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

This tree on the Sinai Peninsula may have helped hydrologists discover ancient, hidden water. By Florian Prischl (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Now imagine you are looking DOWN, deep in the earth, at least several hundred feet.

Beneath the surface of our western deserts, hydrologists have found pockets of ancient water – water trapped during the last ice age.

It’s all right to cry, flamingo

This bird needs a hanky. By Aaron Logan [CC BY 1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Does this bird need a hanky? These aren’t tears of sadness! By Aaron Logan CC BY 1.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Flamingos are one of the few land creatures that can drink salt water and live. That is because they excrete (get rid of) the deadly salt by crying.

Flamingos cry salty tears. Water and salty tears keep them alive and healthy.

 

An ode to teardrops

Ocean of Sorrow, a work by Iranian artist Javad Alizadeh, By Javad Alizadeh. Farhikht at English Wikipedia (The artist has sent it via email after my request.) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

Ocean of Sorrow, a work by Iranian artist Javad Alizadeh, By Javad Alizadeh. Farhikht at English Wikipedia (The artist has sent it via email after my request.) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

When Water Weeps

Drops

Falling

From my eyes

Flow down my face

This is how

I say

 

I care

Prune People? Raisin Kids? Water protects us

This mummy is adorned with cartonnage, layers of linen and plaster. Walters Art Museum [Public domain, CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

This unknown woman mummy is adorned with cartonnage, layers of linen and plaster. Walters Art Museum [Public domain, CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

The water inside you is salty, like ocean water.

And if this water dries up, what a life-less prune-person, raisin-kid, mummy-man you would become!

 

 

Ursula Le Guin’s take on Atticus and Scout

By Gorthian (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By Gorthian (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

This quote from Ursula K. Le Guin’s review of Go Set a Watchman intrigued me:

Watchman isn’t free of childishness — its author was still pretty young — but its goals are adult ones: to show how hard it may be for a  daughter to see her father as a fellow human being, and how hard it is to rebel completely against the injustice of your own people. Merely to be less racist than most of the people around you can be quite an accomplishment. I think that by seeing Atticus as first saint, then demon, we refuse to let him be a man, and also refuse to hear what the author was trying to tell us about being a Southerner.”

Beyond wet dogs: is there water on Pluto?

Water, water...anywhere? By NASA (public domain NASA image: Image:EightTNOs.png) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

Water, water…anywhere? By NASA (public domain NASA image: Image:EightTNOs.png) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/)], via Wikimedia Commons

Water runs through countries, continents, and into oceans.

Water creates watersheds, communities, that connect us all. We are linked around the globe from beginning to end by water. Now as we explore the universe for other planets, we search for the presence of water.

 

Capturing the look and feel of water, in words and pictures

Water Runs Through This Book“You are water–at least two-thirds of you. Even your bones! Water in the discs in your backbone give support so you can stand, walk, and run. Your brain is mostly water. If you could count the molecules inside your head, eight out of ten would be water. Water is the liquid medium necessary for many of the chemical reactions inside you. Such a simple molecule, two atoms of hydrogen and one of oxygen, but without it, we would not survive.”

(from “Bucket One: You Are Water,” Water Runs Through This Book)

One aspect of my new project, Water Runs Through This Book, is non-fiction, sharing facts about water, complemented beautifully by Jan Sonnenmair’s photography.

We last teamed up on Cowboy Up! Ride the Navajo Rodeo. It’s a pleasure to share another project with Jan.

My love letter to water

Water Runs Through This Book

Coming August 11

“Water runs through our bodies, brings food and oxygen to our cells, and allows us to breathe, sweat, stand up and move. Then water cleans up, taking away what pollutes and poisons.”

Those words, taken from the introduction to my new book, Water Runs Through This Book, express the importance of water, that most precious of resources, to the vitality of our bodies.

This title will launch on Aug. 11.

Meeting author Sonia Manzano, ‘Maria’ from Sesame Street

Nancy Bo Flood Sonia Mazano

Author Nancy Bo Flood and Sonia Manzano, author and Maria on Sesame Street, met at the 2015 International Literary Association conference.

A shining star session at ILA (International Literacy Association) was Sunday’s review of the Notable Books for a Global Society—for two reasons. One was an especially delightful surprise; the second was a stirring and inspiring description of the twenty-five 2015 Notable Books for a Global Society winners.

The surprise speaker was Sonia Manzano and you might ask, “Who?” Sonia is better known as Maria, the very person who has been the delightful—and courageous—Maria on Sesame Street for the past forty-four years!

Another surprise was that Sonia’s first children’s book, The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano, was this year’s Pura Belpre Honor Winner. On television as both an actress and screenwriter, and now as an author of books for children, Maria (Sonia) continues to break boundaries and ask children and adults to feel—and re-see, re-think—beyond our comfort zones.

On Sesame Street, Maria presented diversity to children in many areas that had been kept “silent”: gay friends, people of all ethnicities as stars, and for the first time on children’s TV programming, the celebration of death (Mr. Hooper) and birth (Maria’s baby) as part of life.

Sonia was the keynote speaker for this year’s celebration of the twenty-five Notable Books for a Global Society. She emphasized how seeing oneself in books is essential to every child’s experience. “Story” changed her life. When her fourth-grade teacher invited Sonia to see West Side Story, Sonia described that seeing her Puerto Rican people, music, dance, and culture celebrated on stage opened her own eyes and heart to seeing the beauty of her heritage.

Something changed inside her. No longer was she trying to ignore parts of who she was, instead she became eager and excited to learn more about her people’s stories—sing them, dance them, and speak them. In her memoir, out this August, Becoming Maria, Sonia Manzano shares her story as both a window and mirror of growing up amidst chaos and love in New York City.

This is the purpose of honoring books that serve as both windows that invite young readers to step inside the stories of children of other cultures and as mirrors, so that every child finds their own people, their own cultures, their own stories, celebrated and honored in a book. I guarantee you will too—take a look.

Barrel-racing daydream gave birth to Cowboy Up! poetry

Meet Kassidy Dennison, 2013 Indian World Champion Barrel Racer and proud member of the Navajo Nation! (Photo by & courtesy of Devyn L. Dennison)

Meet Kassidy Dennison, 2013 Indian World Champion Barrel Racer and proud member of the Navajo Nation! (Photo by & courtesy of Devyn L. Dennison)

I was standing next to the fence watching a young girl riding her horse barrel-racing, speeding around the arena, kicking up dirt and smiling from ear to ear.

I thought, I want to do that.  I want to be a rodeo-rider… and the first poem in Cowboy Up! came to me, right from that yearning.

Here’s a barrel racer many poems may be written about:

Cowboy Up! and go for a ride

cowboySilhouette2I once raised and rode horses and there is nothing like galloping across a field with the wind in your face and the feel of the horse moving under you.

Here are 10 great places and ways to share that feeling.

Water Runs Through This Book

Water Runs Through This Bookby Nancy Bo Flood
photographs by Jan Sonnenmair
published by Fulcrum Publishers, Golden, Colorado

This book and the photographic images presents a sense of wonder and mystery about water, presenting unusual information – regional, global and astronomical – and then describes ways to conserve this resource that is essential to life – from birth to death.

Water Runs Through This Book is written for readers, young and old, “green or not yet green” who are interested in participating through art or action to increase water awareness and water conservation.

Through photographs, verse, and narration, this book celebrates the most essential ingredient to life: water. Author and educator Nancy Bo Flood and award-winning photographer Jan Sonnenmair combine imagination and information to explore this ever-changing yet essential element. Water Runs Through This Book is much more than an exploration of how water impacts life on Earth. It is a guide for how readers of all ages can become conservationists and protectors of this endangered resource.

Praise for Nancy Bo Flood

“Nancy Bo Flood uses poetic language to explore geology and beauty. Sand to Stone and Back Again is a wonderful read aloud to introduce and expand on classroom studies of geology, particularly the rock cycle.” -April Pulley Sayre

“Readers of all ages will be awed by nature’s breathtaking beauty, and humbled by the ongoing beat of life. The kid-friendly glossary will surely spark conversation between adults and young readers, as well as ignite a passion for the health of the planet.” -Sheri Bell-Rehwoldt