This April, I’m reading one poem per day to celebrate National Poetry Month! I asked you for recommendations, compiled a list of the most promising-sounding works, and have been having great fun with this project ever since! This is the third of six updates, with my thoughts about the most recent five poems I’ve read in each post. You can find my earlier posts for National Poetry Month here.
Such a fiercely hopeful poem! I totally read this with the present day in mind – the Trump administration and all that, you know. I faked my way through Wordsworth’s verse in Foundations of the English Major last semester and I really regretted that after reading this. I’ve been missing out!
Quiet. Beautiful. Sad. I think it’s about loneliness and how disconnected we can feel despite being surrounded by others. The website where I read this poem says it was written in memory of Jay Kashiwamura, a name I’ll have to look up when I have the time: I’m really curious now.
Jimmy Santiago Baca
I’ve read a number of poems about writers and writing so far this April, but I don’t think any resonated with me quite so strongly as this one. Writing is, among so many other things, an expression of love! Oh my gosh, I need to start a collection of poems and quotes on writing as an act of love… maybe I could use of my gazillion trillion empty notebooks for that?
This is an extremely long poem that I spent a lot of time both reading and thinking about. It’s filled with life advice… some serious, some not. I’m tempted to try writing my own version because the format was just so much fun!
The halfway point! “Dialogue with an Artist” is such a lonely yet beautiful poem. I interpreted it through the lens of mental illness despite not knowing if that’s what it was intended to be about. That’s the great joy of reading, right? You can give everything its own meaning. I can’t get the line, “Had I not been lonely, none of my work would have happened” out of my mind.
Have you read any of the poems mentioned here, or any by the same authors? Do you have any recommendations for further reading for me based on these works – a sort of “if you liked that, try this” thing? And how are you celebrating National Poetry Month?
P.S. Check out my latest Her Campus article: Seven Women Poets You Should Read To Celebrate National Poetry Month!