April is both National Poetry Month and National Poetry Writing Month (NaPoWriMo). Also Global Poetry Writing Month (GloPoWriMo), if you live somewhere other than the United States.
For the last few years, I’ve been on the poetry writing bandwagon, writing a poem a day (well, I try to, anyway) during April and October (OctPoWriMo). I invite you to join me this year.
There’s a number of ways you can participate. Check out the official website for the NaPoWriMo challenge. Or, join Writer’s Digest’s Robert Lee Brewer for his Poem-A-Day challenge. You may find other poetry writing challenges online. You can use the suggested prompts if you wish, or not—they’re meant to be a starting point to get the juices flowing, but you can take off in any direction. You can post them online if you want, on a blog, in website comments, on social media. Or you can write them in your notebook and share them or not. You have incredible latitude.
I only became serious about writing poetry a few years ago. I’ve always loved poetry, but my early attempts at writing were so bad that I gave up. A book titled poemcrazy gave me some direction, and I love writing poems now. I mean to write a poem every other day year-round, but life interferes. Poem-a-day challenges help me be more intentional, although some days I can’t write a poem to save my life.
You can also celebrate National Poetry Month by reading poetry. Go to the library and check out a couple of anthologies. Or visit the two websites linked above (and ARHtistic License!) to read the daily offerings. Dissonance also posts daily poems. Poets.org has a poem-a-day page (you can sign up to have them email you a daily poem). You can also sign up for a morning poem email from The Paris Review. Or read poetry on Instagram.
Whether you read poems or write them, don’t let April go by without celebrating them.