About the Author

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"Give 'word gifts -- a story, poem, or letter -- to the people you love; its the best gift of all and yours alone."

When I was little, I used to make my own cards--write a poem inside, draw a picture on the front--and give them to the people I loved. 
I still do, only now I often use my original photographs on the outside.  Among the things I treasure most are word gifts--stories, poems, and letters--I have received over the years from my two daughters.  Do you give word gifts?  They are unique and something only you can give.
Welcome to my backyard!  I love to write out here, and I've found so many poems--a hummingbird nest in the redwood tree, bees collecting pollen from a magnolia blossom, red-tailed hawks swooping overhead.  I've also discovered poems all over my house, especially in my kitchen.  Looking out of my office window, I see only the side of a house and a patch of sky, but there's always the "window" of my imagination.  It's amazing what you can learn from your poems!
 
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Joan Bransfield Graham has lived in the north, south, east, and west United States.  She grew up next to the Atlantic Ocean in New Jersey and now lives near the Pacific Ocean in California.  In between, she has sailed on rivers, oceans, the Chesapeake Bay, lived near Lake Michigan, and camped at the top of a waterfall in Yosemite National Park.           
          It's not surprising, then, that her first book was a collection of water poems.  Splish Splash celebrates the many forms that water can take, from ice cubes and icicles to waves and waterfalls, by using shape itself--concrete poetry.  It gives children a chance to have fun with words, shapes, and ideas--to discover that poetry is all around them.  Her book, Flicker Flash, explores the wondrous ways that light illuminates our world, from the flicker of birthday candles to a flash of lightning.  Joan's poetry for children has been published in anthologies, textbooks, in Ranger Rick's Nature Magazine, Highlights, and Cricket magazines.  She's done freelance writing for ABC-TV and The Writer.
          An honors graduate of Rowan University in New Jersey, Joan took writing classes at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and UCLA.  She has traveled extensively and lived one summer with a Spanish family on the island of Majorca, where she studied painting and drawing. 
          Joan has been a teacher, scout leader, and outdoor education crafts instructor who loves inspiring students to be creative.  She's also lived in Wisconsin, Kentucky, and Virginia, as her husband, Jim, was a FBI agent for 22 years.  A writer friend calls them "Rhymes & Crimes."
 
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