The Poetry Project

Lu at Regular Rumination and Kelly at The Written World started the Read More/Blog More Challenge awhile ago, which involved reading and posting about poetry at the end of each month. I  got a few posts in, but didn't always remember when the end of the month rolled around.  As poetry is an ongoing and important part of my life (both reading and writing it), I am thrilled to take part in the newly revamped version of Read More/Blog More as The Poetry Project.

The link explains all the details, but the short of it is greater flexibility, greater community.  It's a win, and I'm excited to participate as often as possible.  The first prompt serves as kind of an introduction, so here are my responses to the Meet and Greet questions:

1) Why do you want to join the Poetry Project?
I'm all about sharing the LOVE!  I want to bring poetry to more readers, readers of all kinds, and I've been pondering several actions along these lines for awhile now.  This project will allow me to share some of my favorites and new pieces that have wide appeal.  That's not to say poetry has to be completely accessible, 
2) Do you have a favourite poet? 
I don't really have a favorite poet, but there are several I return to frequently: Mary Oliver, Denise Levertov, Wallace Stevens, and Theodore Roethke, among others.
3) Hopefully this will go longer than a year. Do you have any suggestions for monthly themes?
Since I read a lot of children's literature, I would suggest a theme on poems for young readers.
4) What are your experiences with poetry in the past? Have they been positive or negative?
Though I don't remember having any particularly impressive introduction to poetry, I do remember falling in love with e e cummings in high school (didn't we all?) and most of my experiences with poetry since have been positive.  There are a few trends I find decidedly negative, chief among them the poetry journal.  Even a poetry lover has a hard time ingesting that many poems from that many voices at once.
5) Tell us about a poem or poet that has had a profound effect on you. If you can’t think of a poem, how about a song? Or a line from a story?
There have been several to have had deep effects on me.  I will choose the time my then-boyfriend, now-husband went to a reading together where Linda Parsons read several poems about motherhood that moved me deeply.
6) What frustrates you about poetry or the way we talk about poetry?
See above about poetry journals!  Poets these days have to be academics or at least submit to academic journals and even then they will likely never rise above complete obscurity.  It frustrates me that we don't have any collective poetic experiences.
7) Tell us something about yourself that has nothing to do with poetry!
The longer I am married, the more I love North Carolina basketball and PGA golf.  I so wanted Troy Kelly to win the Greenbrier Classic today - and NOT just because my kids got his autograph before practice rounds on Wednesday.

To temper my concerns about poetry journals and shared experiences, this month's Martha Stewart Living magazine quoted an excerpt from Billy Collins' beautiful poem "The Lanyard."  Click here to read the whole poem and then join the conversation by commenting below on what you liked or didn't like about this poem.


  1. Hello! I've just joined this project too. I'm really looking forward to discussing poetry with more people and hopefully getting lots of inspiration of what poets to read next.

  2. Hi, Jessica! Thanks for stopping by the blog! I love finding a new blog to explore, and yours looks like lots of fun! The project does have a lot of promise, and I'm hoping it fosters solid conversation all around the internethood.

  3. Hi, I just joined the project as well, and am really excited to be connecting to other poetry lovers. I have had an ongoing love affair with E.E. Cummings, and have just recently read some of Billy Collins' work. I'll check out the link you posted.

  4. Oooh, you like Wallace Stevens, too? I once took a poetry-writing class with Denise Levertov.