April is National Poetry Month, and to celebrate it we’re asking you to write about your own experiences with verse. What poems do you remember hearing or reading, whether in early childhood or in English class last week? Do you like poetry in general? Do you have a favorite poet? Have you ever written a poem?
In an essay for the Book Review, “Oprah Magazine’s Adventures in Poetry,” David Orr writes about the April issue of O: The Oprah Magazine, which is devoted to poetry:
The signs of the coming apocalypse are many, but none are starker than this Web headline in the April issue of O: The Oprah Magazine: “Spring Fashion Modeled by Rising Young Poets.” Yes. Spring fashion. Modeled. By rising young poets. There follows a photomontage of attractive younger women — some of whom are rising poets mostly in the “I get up in the morning” sense, but all of whom certainly look poetic — in outfits costing $472 to $5,003. This is all part of O’s special issue celebrating National Poetry Month, edited by the noted verse aficionado Maria Shriver and including interviews with “all-star readers” like Bono, Ashton Kutcher, the gossip columnist Liz Smith and someone named James Franco, who is apparently an actor.
Students: Tell us about your own experiences with poetry, positive or negative, and about any memorable poems you’ve encountered in your life. Do you like poetry in general? Why or why not? Have you ever written a poem? What would you do if you were assigned to help poetry reach a wider audience of people your own age? Why?
Teachers: Here is our “Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month With The New York Times.” You might also visit our weekly Poetry Pairings, in which we pair an accessible poem with a Times article.
Questions about issues in the news for students 13 and older.