Writing my way through the A-to-Z blogging challenge, I’m sharing my thoughts and reflections on a lexicon (vocabulary specific to a certain subject) of unusual, obscure, or simply charming-to-me words. Ludic is defined as “playful, in an aimless way” and that’s my plan for approaching this challenge – keeping my feet on the joy trail and meandering wherever the daily word takes me.
Y is for…
yed – (noun) a song, a poem, a speech, a tale, a riddle. Circa 1200s.
I’m leaning into the poem aspect of today’s word because it happens to be Poem in Your Pocket Day. It’s the annual celebration in the United States, first introduced in 2008 by the Academy of American Poets, in which people are encouraged to choose a poem, carry it around with them and share it with others. What a perfect way to actually participate in April’s National Poetry Month.
I’ve participated for many years, and if you know me at all, you know poetry is essential to my life. I read it daily, and I share my favorites widely with friends. I am on a mission to encourage people to open more fully to this art form, and to see the world through this lens. If I were in charge of things there would be no armies, only poetry academies and versification salons. And everyone would look forward to April’s thirty days of celebration.
While my dreams and imaginings may be bold and unlikely, what is true and doable is that I can in fact carry poems in my pocket to share. Being the paper lover I am and an origami aficionado, I’m always up for a bit of folding. Here’s a pocket I’ve made to hold my selection of poems.
If we saw each other in person, I’d invite you to choose one of the poems to read. But of course we won’t be seeing each other. Still I won’t let that deter me. I’m offering you an opportunity to check out the poems I’ll be carrying this year.
I try to be mindful when quoting poems here on my blog to use only short excerpts or only those that are in the public domain, so as to respect the rights of the poets. So I’m not going to post the poems here. But no worries – I am linking to them and really encourage you to take some time and check them out.
- Nothing Wants to Suffer by Danusha Lameris
- A Love Letter to Humanity by Samantha Reynolds
- Don’t Bother the Earth Spirit by Joy Harjo
- The Poem of Your Life by Joyce Sutphen
I understand of course that you might have decided you don’t actually like poetry, and/or that this post is already too long and you don’t have time. I get it. But I’ll offer once again my opinion that poems open portals into seeing and understanding that circumvent our ordinary habitual brain ruts. And it is a gift to sometimes take the journeys that bring us to new edges. I totally concur with poet Carol Anne Duffy’s observation: “Poetry is the music of being human.”
So what do you think? Are you a poetry lover? Ever celebrated Poem in Your Pocket Day? Would you have chosen a different definition from the ones associated with yed for your musings? Do tell – you know I love to hear.