It’s that time of year again. Sandwiched between chilly March and warm May is the soggy month of April, and poets everywhere rejoice! If I could have voted, I would have put national poetry month in July, this way cocktails and beach chairs would have been part of this list, but I digress. I want to focus on 10 ways to support National Poetry Month.
National poetry month is one of those special event months that every poet should look forward to. Many poets, I believe, still don’t know the honorary month exists. It’s not like they do television commercials and I don’t see very many google ads on the subject, but every poet should support this month of respect for poetry in some way. At very least national poetry month reminds us that people are aware of poetry and that many value the art form.
So, be you poet, or be you muggle, I mean not a poet, you should support our national poetry month. I’ve made a list of things to do below, some are for poets, and some anyone can do. Read them, do it, enjoy the month.
- Poetry Movies
Watch a poetry movie and maybe even encourage others to watch a movie about poetry. I personally love Dead Poet Society, maybe the greatest poetry money ever made. There are many others.
- See a famous poet read
This one is not always easy to do, but if you keep your eye out, and if you are little luck, you will see a famous poet lecturing at a local university. Go, watch the person read. Buy their book. Get a signature. If you are lucky it will impact you. Many of the poets I’ve seen in person have gone on to be some of my favorite poets. You never know how hearing poetry from a skilled poet will change your life.
- Honor National poetry month by being part of our Honoring national poetry month
So we are honoring national poetry month this year by writing 2 line poems. These might be couplets, they might not be. We are looking for 2 really good lines of poetry that honors national poetry month. Go here to honor poetry.
- Buy Poetry
Yes I know this seems small, but in the grand scheme of things buying poetry and poetry anthologies is OF COURSE the best way to support poets. It is a great help to feed the poet. Now I highly recommend either going to an independent book store or an online store and buy an unknown poet. Buy poetry that needs to be bought.
- Take a poetry workshop.
During this month, if you go online you will see dozens of poetry workshops and writing workshops popping up in cities around you. Go to one! Read other people’s poetry and write poetry. Also, if you organize a workshop, have a special night for poetry, please.
Go to a poetry reading and read your work. Read your work on the street. Read your work at school. Read your work into your cellphone and upload it to YouTube. Read your poetry aloud. Your voice is what makes poetry real!
Go to readings. Watch poetry on YouTube, find poetry and listen to it. Find poetry you love, play it aloud and listen just listen.
Find people to talk to about poetry. You might think this is hard but we have poetry discussions on this site all the time. You can go to our Poetry discussions page and drop a comment!
- Write poetry and publish it
Create some poetry! Write, write, write. The only true way of making sure that poetry stays alive in the world is to create it. Then go to our literary magazines for poetry page and send your work to magazines. If you publish your work you are insuring the livelihood of poetry. Do it!
As always, if you know of good ways to honor poetry and national poetry month, please leave comments and suggestions in the comments below!
Richard Edwards has a BFA in Creative Writing and Journalism from Bowling Green State University and an M.S. in Education from the University of Akron. Managing editor of Drunk Duck, poetry editor for Prairie Margins, reporter for Miscellany, Akron Journal, Lorain Journal…check our About Us page for more. Also here is info on our On Classic Articles