April is National Poetry Month, and it is also #NaPoWriMo, meaning you and I should be writing a poem a day for the entire month. I’ve done this before when I participated in the Tupelo Press 30/30.
Many thanks go to the Tupelo 30/30 for getting me started on what became Kin Types.
This month I plan to go it alone because I am not sure I can really handle a full dose this time–and tax month yet (I don’t think T.S. Eliot was thinking of that when he called April the cruelest month, but that is why I think of it that way).
I read through some articles like the following links and made a list for myself of goals for April.
- Broadway World (from 2018)
- Poets.org (from 2015)
- Make Use Of (from 2014)
- New York Times (from 2010)
So here is my list. It’s what works for me this year. Your list will be different (so go ahead and make one!).
- Create a personal poetry anthology on poets.org (I’ve already titled my anthology: THE MOST BESTEST POEMS IN THE UNIVERSE)
- Learn more about poets and poetry events in Arizona (poets.org list)
- Read Edward Hirsch’s essay (poets.org list)
Recreate a poet’s favorite food or drink (poets.org list)I struck out this item because there wasn’t enough choice on the website, so I’ll make my own kimchi fried rice
- Read the first chapter of Muriel Rukeyser’s book The Life of Poetry (this will be a reread, but I can’t remember it as it’s been so long) (poets.org list)
- Search Twitter through #NationalPoetryMonth and #NaPoWriMo and #TMMPoetry (partially from Make Use Of)
- Write a poem a day (from Make Use Of and at least 3 magazines/presses that offer programs for April) But see below for some free daily prompts!!!
To find your free daily prompts try these sources:
They both can be followed on Twitter and/or Facebook, as well as their websites.
If you are more interested in PROSE writing prompts, here are a full month’s worth from Toasted Cheese.
I won’t be posting my daily poems here, but I will give you updates if I am doing ok at it. If I am not writing, you might hear radio silence.
Are you going to join me in celebrating poetry this month? In trying out #NaPoWriMo?
I hope nobody who ever has anything to do with the poster designs for National Poetry Month reads this, but I think they suck every year. Or maybe I should say they are not my idea of good poster art. Why oh why can’t they find something that knocks my socks off, or as Emily D. might say, that takes off the top of my head? The posters need to be WORTHY of poetry.
35 responses to “Welcome, National Poetry Month and #NaPoWriMo!”
I agree about the dire poster
They get worse every year.
That poster is awful, but your ideas are wonderful. Thanks for sharing them, Luanne.
I’m going to do NaPoWriMo again–unless I decide not to at some point. 🙂
Tax month–yeah, still waiting to hear back from our accountant.
It’s good to not feel pressured by it, but rather guided ;)!!! Good luck with your accountant (ick). And have a wonderful time with #NaPoWriMo!
Sounds like a good plan. Best of luck with it!
Thank you, Carrie. Best of luck with that other book so you can get back to Ben ;).
Thank you. 😄
I forgot to order my classroom poster—doesn’t look like I missed much.
Seriously. It gets worse each year, and I am starting to feel a little anger about it because they are missing such a great chance for poetry. This is the best they can do? I’m sure preschoolers could do better. If it’s a matter of cost, there must be many artists who would love to be chosen for the volunteer position just for the exposure.
Right—art and poetry seem such a friendly combo.
A natural combo!
Have fun with NaPoWriMo, Luanne. And good luck with getting taxes done (please don’t hate me…mine are completed…I started over Christmas holidays). I will be READING a poem a day rather than writing one. I’m a prose girl, much as I like and admire poetry.
Elaine, try this so you don’t have to search for a poem each day. https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem-day
They will deliver a beautiful poem to you each morning :).
I am not listening to you about your taxes. My ears are closed. I have them wrapped with duct tape. I am not listening, I am not listening. hahaha
That sign is horrid! Good luck!
I love that my friends all have good taste! What are they THINKING?!
And thank you!
Oh my goodness, let me join the poster protesters. Seriously?
I remember when you did your 30 for 30 Tupelo Press project, Luanne.
I couldn’t believe your perseverance. I wish I would write a poem every day, but maybe I should start with one every week. 🙂
OK, it’s a deal. You will write one a week this month. I will write one a day this week. Then we will touch base about the experience!
Will do, Luanne! You are inspiring me!
Best wishes for having a healthy, happy muse throughout the month Luanne. Agreed, that is one ugly poster! And sorry about the tax!!
Can you even figure out why anybody approved that poster?! Every year has been worse than the one before, but this one takes the cake. Thank you re the muse!!!! xoxo
Tell them they need an artist on their design team 🙂
Great info, Luanne. Wishing you a happy and productive poetry month. xo
Thanks so much, Rudri! Can’t wait to see you!
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Egads! That’s their poster. Now that would turn me off poetry 😉 Great post, by the way. I love that you have links in there so I can come back later when I’m not working at work and see what strikes my fancy. Although lately all that strikes my fancy is a glass of wine (or two) and early to bed.
Right????!!!!!!! The poetry prompts on the napowrimo.net website are really turning out to be fabulous, plus they are accompanied with a lot of good reading. I highly recommend it for anybody who wants to writes poems, even if it’s a fist for them. I hope they keep the prompts up afterward!
It’s that glass of wine that gave me this acid reflux, I’m convinced. I hope it continues to work for you. It’s such a bummer when you can’t do it :(.
😁 So many things about this post had me chuckling up a storm: T.S. Eliot and taxes, kimchi fried rice (yum), that poster. Your comment about poets and their favorite foods, however, reminded me of this little piece I stored away from years ago: https://tinyurl.com/y8o6j3v8. Bon appetite and good luck with #NaPoWriMo.
What a wonderful list! Thanks so much for sharing it. That tulip-sized portion is enough to make me cry!
Gosh, can’t they afford an artist?? Yes, find one who will be inspiring! Students and people should be drawn in by posters not dismissing their messages!!
Hugs to you and you go (write poetry and knock socks off others), girlfriend! xo 💐
Luanne, I’ve been saving this post to read when a few weeks had passed and I could really absorb your suggestions. I love that you did a poem a day, and it’s great to see all your recommendations for ways to get started.
That reminds me, I just picked up a book by Robert Haas, _A Little Book on Form_, that I found in one of those independent bookstores my daughter and I visited. I was hesitant to get another book on poetry, but forms have always fascinated me, and Haas’s approach is a sequence of chapters each with its own list of observations, so I thought, why not? I could learn something even if I don’t get all the way through it!
Hope your May is going well! 🙂
p.s. I totally agree about the non-inspiring poster!
It’s June! June June June! I’m intrigued by the Haas book. Do you recommend it?
Interesting question! I can’t say for sure yet, as I have only just begun to look at it. But here’s his intro (the first couple of paragraphs) and I can see now what drew me to the book:
“This is a book about the formal imagination in poetry.
It began as a series of notes and reading lists for a seminar I was invited to teach as the University of Iowa Writers Workshop in the winter of 1995. The invitation to was to teach a class on forms. When I looked at books on the subjects, I saw that they mostly took form to mean traditional rules previous to composition – rules for the formation of the sonnet, for example, or the villanelle, and while the information in them was quite useful, it didn’t seem to me to have too much to do with the way the formal imagination actually operates in poetry. It does not, for starters, address the formal principles, or impulses, that underlie the great majority of poetry in English and American literatures not written in these conventional forms.
“It seemed possible to construct notes toward a notion of form that would more accurately reflect the openness and the instinctiveness of formal creation by starting with one line as the basic gesture of a poem, and then looking at two lines and their relation to each other as a form or a proposition of form, and then three lines as another, and four lines – two sets of two – as still another, inside an idea that from these basic forms all the others could be generated. The sonnet is two quatrains and two triplets if it is Italian, three quatrains and a couple if it is English, and so on. As for genre . . .”
I see now what attracted me was to think of starting with one line. A building block. And I have found before that breaking down books, chapters, paragraphs, sentences into their smallest unit, and then working upward, can be a very enlightening way to study literature. It also seems very approachable. Anyone can study a line. Or write a line!
So, yes, I guess I would say I would recommend taking a look at it. And as I’m typing in this excerpt from his Intro, I’m thinking, wow, this is right up Luanne’s alley. At least, I think so, just a feeling, anyway! 🙂 Thanks for asking!