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Poem in Your Pocket

 By Jenny Brewer


Poetry is capable of starting the fire in a person’s life, it can change the way we view ourselves or even life around us. The casual poetry reader can easily pick up any poem and be immersed in feelings of awe, inspiration, joy, dread, and sorrow. Well, April is Poetry month, and more specifically April 24th is “Poem in Your Pocket Day”.

Beginning in 2008, The Academy of American Poets had encouraged schools and individuals around the country to spread the art of poetry. The academy initiated the spread of poetry by inspiring people to keep poems in their pockets and recite to others every year on April 24th. History provides many examples of the use of poems in pockets. Soldiers often carried pocket sized poem books on their person, and during the Renaissance pocket-sized poetry was commonplace.

Poetry takes words and places them in ways that fall off the tongue gracefully. Poetry is necessary for the inner workings of imagination. Try to picture a world without wonder and imagination; it literally doesn’t work.

A tombstone in the same graveyard as the artist Jackson Pollock reads, “Artists and poets are the raw nerve ends of humanity. By themselves they can do little to save humanity. Without them there would be little worth saving.”

I agree with the inscription and wish to encourage the act of spreading poetry, and so does the Shasta College Library.  The exhibit featured this month is in honor of Poem in Your Pocket Day. The display case artfully contains works from Edgar Allan Poe, Nancy Milford, and Robert Frost. Handy little poems are available in pocket size, and the exhibit is obtainable to Shasta College students all month. So join the thousands of individuals on April 24th and carry a poem in your pocket to share with others. The artfully spoken words will be appreciated by your peers!



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