Various Schemes for Celebrating Poetry Month

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While rain falls on tender blossoms, Poetry Month is just whizzing by, and I’ve done nothing to pull it from its whirling blur, shake it by the lapels, and say, “Here! Would you settle down if I handed you a poem?” However, I’ve never considered myself a poet. I like to write short stories and flash fiction, which is why, when April comes flying by with its wet droplets of poetic proclamations, I hide in a hole and eat chocolate bunnies. Well, not this year! I’m going to celebrate poetry month, as it is nearly ending. Here are some ideas if you’d like to join in the merry making:

–Write an “erasure poem.” Basically, you start with any piece of text. It could be a social media post you read, a letter from a friend, a news story, etc. Then, you just select words you like, arrange them any way you like, and create from there. Here’s an example:

Original Text:

Congratulations! You’re about to take the first step on your retirement planning journey. The money you contribute and invest now—during your working years—can have the biggest impact on how much you’ll have in retirement. We refer to that savings as BIG MONEY, and your employer has made it easy to get started by automatically enrolling you in your retirement savings plan. Want to save even more? Log in today to review the contribution amount and investment options that have been pre-selected for you. You can choose to keep your plan selections as is, but you have the opportunity to contribute even more and make alternative investment choices. You can contribute less or decline enrollment, although even contributing a little bit can help you be ready!

Poem Version:

“BIG MONEY”

Take the first step. Log in.

Big impact: your employer.

Save yourself.

Contribute more.

Want even more?

Be ready.

Retire!

Decline.

Congratulations!

–“Trick Poetry”

Gather friends and family around the table. Dump small pieces of candy into the center of the table and let everyone have as much candy as they want—but they can’t eat it, yet. For each piece they take, they have to write a poem with that many syllables. You’ll either end up with lots of fun poetry or a stomachache—either way, you’ve celebrated, and that’s all that matters.

–Write a poem in sidewalk chalk for the neighbors to enjoy. Here’s an inspiring example:

I regret to inform you

I helped myself to your garden

And tried to hide my tracks with erasers

It didn’t work (winky-faced emoji in chalk)

“Poetry Slam.” Grab your favorite poem and read it aloud, into a microphone—with passion. Record it and play it right before dinner, every day during National Poetry Month. I suggest “Poem for Paris Hilton” by Nicole Tallman, published by The Daily Drunk. If possible, I would set it as someone else’s voicemail recording—someone important who works at a big corporation, for like an airline or something, because the words “Taco Night with Saweetie” would take on a whole wonder of new meaning in a setting like that—one that would bring joy to an angry caller who has been stranded at Sbarro in the Atlanta-Georgia airport for 45 days straight.

The ideas above should be enough to get you started on a fulfilling journey, but for extra help and fulfillment, you could check out this Poets.org site, “30 Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month.”

I know, there’s only one week left in Poetry Month, but that still leaves plenty of ways to pack mind-blowing poetry into your days.

Your Turn: Do you have a favorite poem?

18 thoughts on “Various Schemes for Celebrating Poetry Month

  1. Hi. I’ve never been too much of a poetry fan. But I’m glad that The New Yorker magazine helps to keep poetry alive. Each issue contains two poems. I wonder if any other general-interest magazines publish poetry. Take care. Neil S.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes–The New Yorker has lots of great stuff–I’ve come across more and more poetry journals/lit mags these days–not sure about general interest–our local newspaper, when I was growing up, would often publish poems.

      Liked by 1 person

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