National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month! Since 1996, the Academy of American Poets has teamed up with publishers, booksellers, literary groups, libraries, schools, writers an poets across the country to "celebrate poetry and its vital place in American culture."

To celebrate, I'm sharing with you the inscription that I found on the inside front cover of an old copy of Modern American Poetry, c. 1930 (purchased with one Emily Ramey at the Argosy Bookstore in New York, which I highly recommend to all you booklovers out there).

"Words of My Own

Poetry is what you thought about when you were a child, somehow not forgotten in the business of growing up, and discovered to be true, and valuable, and possible, just as you always thought it was...

Poetry is the language of a hoped-for country of light, overheard when the road you walk on brings you nearer the unknown border than ever before...

Poetry is that amazement you feel when you understand that light can be like a sword, the voice like a hand caressing you, thought like a flower bursting into bloom, or joy like a star falling through the sky...

Poetry is the coin, out of the full and leaden handful we throw down in payment for the hours of life, that rings true and clear, and lies glittering where it falls...

Poetry is the tree of life packed in a seed and planted in the heart and mind where it takes root, and grows green and flowers, and is the tree again...

Poetry is what sight would be to the blind, speech to the dumb, walking to the crippled and life to the condemned; but you and I see, speak, walk, live and we have poetry."

-John Holmes


  1. Happy Poetry Month! I'll be reviewing a children's poetry book later this month to celebrate.

  2. This is a fantastic beginning to Poetry Month - I love this inscription you've shared, I think it reveals why so many of us feel such a strong compulsion to read and celebrate poetry, especially during this month.

  3. Bermudaonion - looking forward to the review. I'm out to expand my poetry reading for the month. Already own the books, now just need to crack them open!

    Melwyk - I completely agree! He hit the nail on the head. I bought the book solely for the inscription on the inside... I also happened to like the contents, but that was an added plus.


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