National Poetry Month was inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996. Over the years, it has become the largest literary celebration in the world with schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets celebrating poetry’s vital place in our culture.
Dusting off the old blog…
Late in February I made two decisions. First, I wanted to start writing again. (The first thing I did was bought a laptop so I could work. It had been awhile since I’d even looked at my blog, and by awhile, I mean years. I started it back in 2008, hit hard at it for a couple of months, swinging blindly in the dark with no direction, no idea what I was doing, and worked my way up to 14 whole followers, most the result of a cross stitch freebie I offered.
I couldn’t even remember how to log in.
So, I figured out the log in stuff, revamped the blog over the course of 48 exhausting hours (still very much clueless about how to edit and post, navigate, or promote) and relaunched with renewed purpose and a clearer vision for what I wanted the blog to be. i still have less than 150 followers but that number is rising a little each day.
The second decision was to finish my book. I researched and purchased Scrivener and worked hard at the tutorial to learn how the features worked, and I set out to inputting the few measly pages I’d written and plunged forward to writing.
A funny thing happens when you honor your dream: doors open. I am writing poetry again. People are reading it. Literary journals are publishing it. Even my local newspaper has picked me up as a columnist and …get this…they encourage me to submit my poetry for publication! So far two of my poems, Bluebirds in Late Winter and Tomorrows have been published in the paper. I started a Medium account: https://medium.com/@fnfwriter and guess which of my posts are getting the highest attention?
Oh, my heart! And here I was posting articles, thinking, I’ve got to have something on Medium to get people to my page, so they see the poetry.
But they COME for the poetry.
Poetry, like all art, has a message for us. It says: care, grow, develop, adapt, overcome, nurture, protect, foster, cherish. It says: your reality is spiritual. It says: achieve your full humanness. It invites us to laugh, reflect, cry, strive, persevere. It says: rejoice! Above all, it says to us: be! We cannot turn our backs on art. Art heals. – from a talk by Roger White, Bring Chocolate, in The Language of There
So, here in National Poetry Month, I am going to pay more attention to my craft, without apology. With a renewed confidence that what I am doing, and you, my fellow poet, should do the same. There ARE still people out there that can appreciate the value of poetry, how it moves us. Shows us our own humanity. Allows us to go away to some interesting place where we measure what we know against what we are seeing in the words of a poem, and then let the heart decide how to read it. Poetry makes us think, analyze, process…and in a good way. by choice we go on the journey, either to write it or to read and experience it.
I invite you this month to:
- Support poets and honor their craft with your attention, your reactions, your thanks. As a poet, we truly do love a reader-response!
- Read a poem from your favorite famous poet. Don’t have a favorite? FIND a favorite poet and learn their story and style.
- Write a poem! Or write one every day of the month if you are up to the challenge!
If you’d like to leave your link below to your poetry blog or if you’d like to share a poem in a comment, you are welcome to do so. Thank you for reading and HAPPY NATIONAL POETRY MONTH!!