Poetry Month is nearing its end for 2022, but that doesn't mean there isn't plenty of time to indulge your love of verse. One of the best ways Poetry Month helps us honour the form is the creative Poem in Your Pocket Day, a simple-to-observe occasion that takes place on Friday, April 29 this year.
Created by the Academy of American Poets, Poem in Your Pocket Day is now "an international movement that encourages folks to [centre] poetry within their daily interactions. On PIYP Day, select a poem, carry it with you, and share it with others". It's that easy.
If you want to discover some new poems to inspire your PIYP Day selections, check out the free PDF from the Academy of American Poets with fifteen poems to sample as well as ideas of how to observe the day in classroom, community, and business settings.
The League of Canadian Poets has shared a helpful list of ways you can participate in the day:
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- Start a “poems for pockets” giveaway in your school or workplace
- Urge local businesses to offer discounts for those carrying poems
- Post pocket-sized verses in public places
- Memorize a poem
- Start a street team to pass out poems in your community
- Distribute bookmarks with your favourite lines of poetry
- Post lines from your favourite poem on your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Tumblr
- Send a poem to a friend
- Share your favourite poem on social media and use #PoemInYourPocket or #PocketPoem
- Write your favourite poem on a sticky note to put on your fridge or cubicle at work. Or, if you’re working from home, add a poem to your email footer for the day.
- Make your pocket poem the background on your phone or share it in a group message with others who may also want to participate.
- Create a video of your favourite spoken-word piece or have a virtual poetry night where everyone shares their favourite poems aloud.
- Plan a poetry exchange with your household, or virtually with a group of friends. For an in-person exchange, everyone writes their favourite poem on a piece of paper and puts it into a bucket. The poems are shuffled, and you draw a poem at random and real aloud.
- Embrace the artist within. Type up your favourite poem using a typewriter or typewriter app. You can make calligraphy or word art that showcases your chosen poem to share with a friend or family member. If you’d like your pocket poem to be a more permanent display, you can even decide to turn it into wall art! Create your word art on canvas or find a fun picture frame and hang up your poem for everyone to see. Consider making this an annual tradition with friends. You can create a new piece of wall art every year for your pocket poems.
We're adding a couple of extra ideas, including:
- Share a favourite poem with your children or other young people in your life
- Use opening lines from favourite poems as writing prompts for your own piece
- Make Poem in Your Pocket Day an ongoing thing by tucking a printed or written quote from a favourite poem into your wallet or purse to keep there permanently
- Try creating a piece of visual art (in any medium – drawing, digital, embroidery, clothing, whatever you love) inspired by a favourite poem or line
- In a notebook or document, begin tracking, on an annual or monthly basis, poems that speak to you (then look back on this archive in a few years!)