Here is another type of poetry I hadn’t heard of before until I began researching for this month’s theme. Found poetry is poetry pulled together from any source that contains words, like your kid’s hippo report or a cookbook. You simply take the words or phrases and assemble them into a poem. If you use a copyrighted work, be careful you don’t violate the copyright. For more information, read this post on Almost an Author.
If you didn’t know it, today is Poem in Your Pocket Day. What is Poem in Your Pocket Day? So glad you asked.
According to the website for the Academy of American Poets, Poem in Your Pocket Day began in New York City in April 2002. “In 2008, the Academy of American Poets took the initiative to all fifty United States, encouraging individuals around the country to participate. In 2016, the League of Canadian Poets extended Poem in Your Pocket Day to Canada.”
But what do you do to celebrate this day? Choose a favorite poem, or just your favorite lines from one, and share it with another person. If you want to go on social media, use #pocketpoem.
This post is my pocket, and I will share some of my favorite lines of poetry.
Wither Mother’s Day and Father’s Day coming up in the next few months, it’s not too early to start work on a poem as a gift. If you are new to poetry, I have two recommendations. The first is reprinted from a post I wrote last year. The second is for a site I have recently discovered. If you haven’t considered giving a gift of poetry, please do. So personal a gift is sure to be treasured.
Books of Children’s Poetry
I like studying children’s poetry because I can focus on the structure, instead of the meaning, which is usually straight forward. Below are listed books that are a great introduction to a few different styles of poetry.
The website Shadow Poetry has everything a budding poet needs to get started. Under “Poetry Types” a plethora of traditional and new styles of poetry are listed in alphabetical order and are defined with examples. Want to write your mother a sonnet? Look it up here. Japanese poetry gets its own section.
Under “Handbook” all kinds of terms associated with figurative and poetic language are defined. When I browsed through “W”, I found “wrenched accent”. It means the “forced change in the normal accent of a syllable or syllables to make a word conform to the prevailing metrical” pattern. I’ve often come across this accent in rhyming children’s books and thought it was just called “bad poetry”. What’s worse, I’ve committed this crime myself. Now at least my crime has a name.
Remember to EDIT
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, no matter what you are writing, you should always go back and edit. No one writes their best in a first draft.
Have you ever given a literary gift? If so what was it?
I had never heard of tanka, a form of Japanese poetry, until I read this article on Almost an Author. It is a five-line poem, the first three containing the same syllables as haiku: 1st line — five, 2nd line — seven, 3rd line — five. The fourth and fifth lines of a tanka poem each contain seven syllables. The author notes that the themes in tanka are more varied than haiku, which concerns nature. As an exercise, the author recommends write “a haiku first and then” add “the last two lines as reflection on your subject.”
So I’ve tried it with the haiku I posted in last Monday’s Sparks.
In April. the sky
Cries. Out of anger? Sadness?
The earth send flowers.
Now I’ll add two more lines of seven syllables and turn it into a tanka.
I am posting today instead of Thursday because I am guest blogging on Tessa Emily Hall’s site, Christ is Write. My post combines several ways to generate names for characters. If you like developing names as much as I do, click here to visit the site.