An under-appreciated art form, poetry is often cast aside in favor of best-selling novels, new music, and late-night Netflix binges. While all of the above ought to have a place in your life, overlooking the modest verse is nothing short of a mistake. More than mere words, poems can inspire you and enrich your life in unexpected ways.
What’s more, it’s no coincidence that you feel at ease after reading a well-written poem that truly affects you. In fact, according to a recent study by Frontiers, the human brain is hardwired to have an appreciation for this type of art. With that in mind, it’s only logical you would want to make time to enjoy all the poetic world has to offer. Here are a few ways you can infuse it into your day-to-day life.
1. Follow Button Poetry online
If the notion of opening a poetry book and skimming its endless lines gives you a stomachache, there’s a modern-day solution to your problem. What if, instead of having to sift through the pages, you could have your excerpts, quotes, and poetic ramblings delivered to you in a more technologically-friendly way?
Button Poetry is a hub for all the poetry your mind can handle, but it’s more than that. In their words, it’s a platform “dedicated to developing a coherent and effective system of production, distribution, promotion and fundraising for performance poetry.” In fact, on their YouTube channel, you can watch a whole array of contemporary performers reciting original work. It’s surprisingly easy to get lost down the rabbit hole here, as one poem leads swiftly into another.
That’s not the only place you can follow Button Poetry either. On their Instagram, you will be treated to small, bite-sized quotes from some of the most brilliant emerging poets of our time. Just think about it — these snappy words of wisdom and tidbits are the ideal way to break up all those cute cat pictures and selfies from your friends.
2. Celebrate Poem in Your Pocket Day
Your inner lust for the poetic verse may be so strong that you want to share it with the world. Well, there’s a day for that. Each April sees the official Poem in Your Pocket Day both here in the US and Canada. The day was started back in 2008 by the Academy of American Poets, and it’s utterly simple should you want to take part.
The first step is perhaps the hardest: you need to choose your all-time favorite poem. And, if you can’t quite manage to do that, just pick one that affects you in some way. Next, you need to print out several copies of the poem itself to pop in your pocket.
Throughout the day, when the moment calls for it, hand out the copies to people who may enjoy reading them. (Note: If you plan on giving out a bunch of the printouts in a public place, you may need to get permission from community officials first!)
3. Listen to Poetry Off the Shelf
The audiobook trend has taken the world by storm, but there’s no reason poetry should get left behind. The Poetry Off the Shelf podcast gives you a helpful dose of news, interviews, poetry readings, and more. Once you subscribe (in just one simple click!), you will have access to new podcasts as well as ones from the back catalog.
The genius thing about listening to a podcast is that you don’t necessarily have to set aside time to do it. Instead, you can weave it into your day-to-day chores. Whether you’re working out at the gym or on your morning commute to work, all you need to do is pop in your earphones and start listening.
4. Wear Your Favorite Poem
How else can you make poetry part of your very being? Well, introducing a little poetic charm into your fashion sense might be just the thing. If you scour the likes of Etsy and other indie online retailers, you will find a dazzling array of poetry-themed items you can wear. From darling little pendants to adorable bracelets, there’s something for every literature loving geek out there.
5. Subscribe to a Poetry Magazine
Sure, you may have a bunch of old poetry books collecting dust and making you look intellectual on your bookshelf; but what about exciting, new works? Staying in touch with the latest poets and their offerings needn’t be a hassle.
One of the easiest ways to do just that is to subscribe to a poetry related magazine, either in digital or print form. Luckily for you, there are a whole load of options out there. If you’re completely new to this area, you may want to consider the Poetry Magazine from the Poetry Foundation or The American Poetry Review.
Alternatively, you may want to opt for a subscription that focuses on a niche realm of poetry such as women’s rights or empowerment. Most publications offer an easy subscription service, which means that you will get the latest editions right to your letterbox or, indeed, your e-reader instead. Simple!