Celebrating National Poetry Month at University Library

The month of April, also known as National Poetry Month, brought another year of performances, writing prompts and fair competition amongst poets all over the country. Poetry Month never fails to enrich our understanding and appreciation of clever wordplay, competitive slam and the raw quality of the spoken word.

IUPUI’s University Library celebrated by having students submit their favorite poems from well-known writers. Some of the poems honored were “The Red Wheelbarrow” by William Carlos Williams, “Sick” by Shel Silverstein and “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost. The poems were posted on the library’s official Instagram and Twitter accounts. (@IUPUI_ulib)

Poetry on the Fringe (Photo from Facebook)

Business Librarian Justin Kani said it’s very important to keep celebrating and honoring National Poetry Month in this way.

Poetry is fundamentally about words and the meaning they bring and communicate to humanity,” Kani said. “There is a poem out there for everyone and every mood. As a community, I feel it’s important to share experiences through the art of words.

Many used this month to celebrate local poets, and also to write and perform some of their own work. While there is not one huge National Poetry Month event in Indy, there are several events that take place in the month of April, and actually year-round. Local poet, actress and playwright Gabrielle Patterson said, “Everybody’s there to listen and absorb, and take poetry with them.”

Patterson noted venues and events such as The Green House Affect, Vibe on Wednesdays, VOCAB, Iconoclast and an event that Gabrielle helps organize, Poetry on the Fringe.

Gabrielle Patterson (photo from Facebook)

Patterson performed at some of the events this month, as well as wrote her own personal “30 in 30” poems. These poems, as Patterson explained, are based on a challenge where the poets are prompted to write a poem a day for everyday of National Poetry Month.

“This challenge is to keep you writing and exercising your craft,” Patterson said. “So whether it’s a haiku, a short story, it doesn’t matter. It’s just writing for 30 days.”

Patterson said that the celebrations and challenges of the month are a great way to honor poetry legends and newcomers alike.

“Poetry never stops. Every month, every week, every day is ‘Poetry Month’ for us,” Patterson said. “National Poetry Month is a time to celebrate writers. 

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