National Poetry Month Begins

I’m a poetry collector. It’s a habit I’ve had since I was a kid. If I read something that I connect with I save it, either by writing it down in a notebook or, now, by saving it in a file on my computer.

Three years ago, my sister and my sister-in-law both had their first children. My sister had twins, a boy and a girl, and my sister-in-law had a boy. With the best of intentions, I bought a little notebook for each of them, intending to write down some of the poems I loved as a child and wanted to share with them.

You guessed it: three years later, the books are unfinished.

But I’m hopeful that this month I’ll have the motivation I need to finish those little books. April is National Poetry Month and I’ve been doing some research on the Internet, at my library, and in my own poetry books.

Here’s one I thought appropriate for my niece and nephew.

The Early Morning

By Hilaire Belloc

The moon on the one hand,

the dawn on the other:

The moon is my sister,

the dawn is my brother.

The moon on my left hand

and the dawn on my right.

My brother, good morning:

my sister, good night.

And I like this one for my nephew.

Me

By Walter de la Mare

As long as I live

I shall always be

My Self – and no other,

Just me.


Like a tree.

Willow, elder,

Aspen, thorn,

or cypress forlorn.


Like a flower,

For its hour –

Primrose, or pink,

Or a violet –

Sunned by the sun,

And with dewdrops wet.


Always just me.

Even though it’s National Poetry Month, that doesn’t mean I’ll just include American poets. I don’t know how anyone could be so short-sighted, particularly with so much great poetry in the world. As I find them, I’ll share the poems I’m including in those little books and some of the websites and books I’m using to find them.

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