#todayspoem, the solace and delight of contemplating and sharing a poem daily

Little Theatres, by Erin Moure

It all started with this thoughtful and quietly ebullient reflection from writer Alan Heathcock:

A Poem A Day: Portable, Peaceful And Perfect
datelined December 26, 2011 on the NPR web site (but published around December 24th, I think …)

One daunting, harried morning, Heathcock paused to randomly draw a book of poetry from a shelf, and to just as randomly select and read a poem. Mary Oliver’s “Egrets” momentarily took him away from not enough sleep, from kids needing to get to school, from deadlines demanding to be met … and after that brief respite …

I closed the book, transformed, bolstered from the inside out.

From that day forward, each morning I read a poem.

A bunch of us book friends on Twitter – including Harvey Freedenberg, Jeanne Duperreault and Elizabeth Bastos – starting discussing the power of randomly selected and surprisingly resonant poetry to lift one’s spirits and put a new spin on the day. From that conversation, we agreed that we could all quite happily manage the New Year’s resolution of starting our day with a poem. We’d swiftly grab it from a bookshelf or online, as suited, and we would take the time to read, savour and contemplate, like a brief morning meditation. And then we’d share our choices with each other, using the #todayspoem Twitter hashtag.

Even before January 1st, several of us jumped in enthusiastically. The selections are diverse, whimsical, touching, haunting, prescient, eye-opening. Let me share a few of the tweets that have help to draw those of us who know about it (so far) into this exquisite shared experience:

@michaelmagras This poem by Octavio Paz is one of my favorites. #todayspoem http://bit.ly/cSSwQX

@Perednia From Tomas Transtromer’s Prelude: “Waking up is a parachute jump from dreams.” #todayspoem

@HarvF Ellen Bass, “Gate C22.” Very appropriate for this season of travel: http://bit.ly/hWmWty #todayspoem

@bookgaga “Regard a tree. / Who would have better seized light’s longing?” @ErinMoure from Aturuxo Calados, Little Theatres #todayspoem

I think I’m especially in love with this tweet, because it shares an image of the poem on the page:

@Materfam #todayspoem Le Train de Midi, Stephanie Bolster yfrog.com/ob7gjlij

As you can see, everyone is sharing their #todayspoem experience a little differently, with an image, a link, an excerpt, whatever fits in a tweet. Each tweet is enough to spur a moment of delight or recognition or, handily favorited in Twitter, is a lovely bookmark for future poetry explorations.

The #todayspoem experience is a dual delight. You treat yourself to an energizing moment of reflection in the morning, and then you have others’ shared #todayspoem gifts to enjoy just by going to the hashtag at any time. Care to join us?

See also:

9 thoughts on “#todayspoem, the solace and delight of contemplating and sharing a poem daily

  1. Pingback: being Bogey, a poem by Leslie Greentree | bookgaga

  2. jaduperreault

    Vicki, this is so much fun and I’m glad you wrote about it to draw more people in. I’m already discovering new poets and it’s only been going for a short time! I think it will be the next big twitter movement!

  3. Vicki Ziegler

    Thanks, Michael, Frances and Jacqueline. I’m glad we’re all getting into this. I’m really looking forward to meditating on this every morning, having something to share, and discovering the amazing works that you’re all sharing and going to share.

  4. Materfam

    I’m loving this community and the experience of sharing poetry this way. Thanks so much for including me — can’t wait to see how this movement develops along with the year.


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