I didn’t make it to our meeting last week, so I missed a chance to remind you that Poetry Month starts on Saturday. This delightful op-ed by Garrison Keillor can speak for me. With a great deal of wit Garrison asks us all not just to read poetry during April but to write a poem for someone we love. He tells us
But you can do it. The first step is: Imitate. Google “great love poems” and find one you like a lot and copy and paste it onto a blank page — Burns’ “My love is like a red, red rose” or Stevenson’s “I will make you brooches and toys for your delight” or Yeats’ “Wine comes in at the mouth and love comes in at the eye” — and simply change the nouns, e.g. “My love is like a double bed” or “a trip to town,” “a vision pure,” “a red T-shirt”; “I will make you coffee and serve by candlelight”; “I come in the front door and love comes down from upstairs” — and then go on to plug in new verbs and adverbs, prepositions. It’s like remodeling an old house.
If you need a nudge to remember to look at poems this month, why not try Knopf’s Poem-a-day? You won’t even need to bother with Google; Knopf will send the poems straight to your inbox (though I can’t guarantee the poem will always be a love poem). And Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac will bring you a poem every day, too. Even if you’re not inspired to write a poem this month, you can always remember the poems you like and get ready to do one of the advanced reading projects.
Oh. I forgot. To His Coy Mistress.