Sunday, April 12, 2015



April is National Poetry Month and it's time to celebrate poets and poetry.  The bestfiction writing uses the same literary elements as seen in poetry: metaphor, symbolism, alliteration, and subtext.

Where do poets get their inspiration? "Poems come from ordinary experiences and objects, I think," Sharon Olds, winner of the 1984 National Book Critics Circle Award for her book, The Dead and the Living, says. "Out of memory—a dress I lent my daughter on her way back to college; a newspaper photograph of war; a breast self-exam; the tooth fairy; Calvinist parents who beat up their children; a gesture of love; seeing oneself naked 
over age 50 in a set of bright hotel bathroom mirrors." 

How do we read poetry?

First of all, we turn off the television. Secondly, we're prepared; we have a book of poetry on hand for those surprising moments when we have a chance to read. Third, we read silently and then we read the poem once again out loud, paying attention the rhythm of the lines as we slowly absorb the poem's meaning. 

Poetry demands our attention and concentration. Being able to concentrate in today's hectic world is sometimes impossible. Waking up in the middle of the night unable to sleep is the perfect time to turn on a light and read a few poem. Time spent having to wait 
for an appointment can be better utilized by pulling out a volume of poetry.

Good poetry has clarity of language that will help us in our own writing. The closer we 
look at poetry, the more we will discover about excellent writing. Poetry is, after all, words put together in the most perfect order.

Put a poem in your pocket during National Poetry Month. Read one, write one, and share one with others. We have 26 letters to play with and mold into art, and poetry makes the best use of those letters.

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