In honor of the upcoming National Poetry Month, I’ve got a few poetry-related projects percolating for myself in my writing and teaching lives, but what about my reading life?
You all know I’m a fan of Emily Gould, and she wrote a wonderful piece for the Poetry Foundation’s website recently about a challenge she set for herself, as an independent study in reading more poetry. She read a randomly selected poem from the Poetry Foundation’s website each day for 30 days, and at the end of the 30 days, she chose her four favorite poems from the month and read the books in which they were originally published, one book per day for four days. Read her essay if you want to hear more about what the challenge taught her about reading, poetry and language.
Technically, I already “read” a poem a day, because I get them sent to my inbox every day from the Academy of American Poets Poem-A-Day program, which I’ve subscribed to for at least a year, back when it was only possible during the month of April. However, I have to be honest and say that too often, I don’t actually read the poems with any kind of care or attention, but instead, let my eyes scan them quickly and then just as quickly move on.
So in April, I’m going to challenge myself to spend some time with those poems each day, even just for ten minutes a day. Then, at the end of the month, I’ll choose my four favorites and read the book in which they originally appeared, just as Gould did.
Do you read poetry for pleasure? If you want to play along with my poetry challenge, please feel free–I’ll be blogging about it again closer to April, and maybe even make it an official challenge, with Mr. Linky and everything!
For the curious: I’ve gotten a bit distracted from my existing challenges, as I stalled out in Julius Caesar and haven’t managed to make myself finish it while I got sidetracked with some other wonderful books. I’m determined to keep pushing forward, and after all, I’ve still got many months ahead in which to finish!