Readers, it's about to be Poetry Month, and you know what that means—time to sign up for poem-a-day e-mails, read some verse and generally appreciate "the best words in their best order." (That's what Coleridge called poetry, and it's also the name of FSG's fine poetry blog.)
Every April, Knopf sends out a poem each day. (Click here to sign up.) Their video promotion for this service is too cute not to share:
Add FSG's poetry blog to your Google Reader, as it will soon be buzzing with interviews, poetry discussions and more.
Finally, check out Diann Blakely's latest poetry roundup for BookPage, featuring dazzling new collections from Elizabeth Bishop, Billy Collins, Robert Pinsky and Major Jackson. For the younger set, Robin Smith has written about "sweet words for little readers." (Funny aside: Jack Prelutsky's A Pizza the Size of the Sun is perpetually in the Top 10 of BookPage.com's most-viewed list. So I know a lot of people out there love children's poetry!)
How will you celebrate Poetry Month? Do you have a favorite poem?
We're a week into National Poetry Month—has anyone been enjoying poem-a-day e-mails from the websites I highlighted last week?
There's another site that poetry lovers (or people who want to get to know the genre) should definitely browse: Favorite Poem Project, founded by Robert Pinsky, the 39th Poet Laureate of the United States. The best part of the site is the Favorite Poem Project videos, 50 short documentaries in which Americans of all ages read their favorite poems. I like the recording of a 5th-grader reading Theodore Roethke's "The Sloth":
Also, congratulations to our winner of Shel Silverstein's A Light in the Attic—Carol Bibb, who said her favorite poem is Christina Rossetti’s "Who Has Seen The Wind?".
Novels and memoirs perpetually show up on the BookPage most-viewed list, but since April is National Poetry Month, I want to encourage readers to branch out a bit and enjoy some verse.
Before you do anything else, read this poetry roundup from our April print edition. Diann Blakely highlights several new collections, including Poetry in Person by Alexander Neubauer, The Apple Trees at Olema by Robert Hass and others. Younger readers will enjoy our roundup of children's poetry books—with titles like Can You Dig It? and Everybody Was a Baby Once, this feature proves that poetry can be silly and fun.
Many websites are hosting special series or e-mails in honor of National Poetry Month:
Who are your favorite poets? What poems do you like to re-read? Leave a comment and you'll be entered to win Shel Silverstein's classic A Light in the Attic (a special edition with 12 new poems!). Deadline: Next Thursday, April 8 at 10 a.m.
I will always love Robert Frost's "Home Burial"—probably because the first time I heard it was when Frank Bidart read it out loud in my senior year poetry seminar in college. (" 'Don’t, don’t, don’t, don’t,' she cried.") And Pablo Neruda's Odes are very special to me. Trying to teach a kid to love poetry? Pick an ode, any ode. I like "Ode to Tomatoes." (And after reading it out loud, hand her a copy of Pam Muñoz Ryan's fabulous The Dreamer—read an interview with the author here.)