Today marks the beginning of National Poetry Month in the United States. I know I kvetch now and then about how the designation does a disservice to poetry, corralling it into one month as though April is the only month one can bother to notice and read poetry. And while I still hold to that belief, at the same time I also think that if a month-long poetry blitz in schools and libraries touches just one child (or adult) and turns her/him on to poetry and inspires her/him to become a reader of poetry, then the month is worth it.
I know, I know, I can hear you saying, “But Stef, you can’t have it both ways. You either don’t like or you like. Which is it?”
I say I can have it both ways. I love Poetry Month because I love poetry. I hate Poetry Month because I love poetry. It’s all about love. And poetry. And love of poetry.
So how about a little celebratory fun? I have “written” a poem for you composed entirely of poetry book titles on my bookshelves. I think I might have done this before a few years ago but that doesn’t matter. It’s a fun game and anyone can play. Give it a try yourself!
And now, the poem.
A Thousand Mornings
Upstairs in the Garden
A Hundred White Daffodils
The Wild Iris
Out of Silence
Like the Singing Coming Off the Drums
A Jaguar of Sweet Laughter
You Are Happy
The authors of the titles in order: Mary Oliver, Robin Morgan, Jane Kenyon, Louise Glück, Diane Wakoski, Muriel Rukeyser, Sonia Sanchez, Diane Ackerman, Erica Jong, and Margaret Atwood