So, this was the last class I had with the 5th graders. And this is the last day of National Poetry month. But of course, poetry continues. I hope that you enjoyed these poetry adventures. I know that they were written for 5th graders, but again, I hope maybe they made you smile and if we’re really, really lucky, maybe even inspired a poem or two or three…
So from here, how do you use poetry in your life? Think of poetry and how it puts details together. You might not be writing a poem, but thinking like a poet can help you solve problems and think of examples, and make connections in your world.
Poetry reveals details and the magic of the things that are hidden, and that can be useful in so many ways. Many times, just listening to the world is like listening to poetry.
Some people don’t want to talk about their poetry, and that’s OK. Poetry can be very personal. And what people do with what’s personal is their own business.
But I think that everybody to a point is to poet. We all have to make sense of our world and sometimes our world can’t be explained. Or we all know that things relate, but we can’t always prove it yet. We know we’re like the people on the other side of the world come even though we can’t visit there tomorrow.
For all that, poetry inspires our sciences, our humanities and our arts. For medicine and engineering…for everything we do that starts with saying one thing is like the other, this is like this, I could be this, how do I make it come true?
For those of you who want to share your poetry there are so many ways to do it. There are readings.
- Nowadays there are journals and online journals.
- There are small presses. Red Hen Press is one of them, and they helped bring me here. (note: Red Hen directs this incarnation of Writers in the Schools)
- There are literary art centers–we have a really good one in Venice called “Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center”
- Some schools even publish literary magazines! I used to edit my literary magazine in high school.
- And you can even make your own publications online or in something called a “chapbook.” That you can give to friends or even sell when you read your poetry in public. Sometimes I would travel places and read poetry, and so my poetry book, and that would pay for my gasoline and a trip to McDonald’s!
And of course, you can teach. And when you appreciate poetry as a teacher, you’ll find that it gives you so many different ways to relate and understand students. That’s the best feeling, I think.
I’m so grateful and happy that I discovered poetry. I hope that you are, too!
Take good care! Ryka