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Poem

No Place for Poetry on My Son's Common Core ELA Test

Cynthia Wachtell | Posted 06.28.2014 | Education
Cynthia Wachtell

Ever since Beowulf, poetry has been critical to the development of the English language. We are now seeing a form of literary expression disappear without any discussion of whether it has a role to play in modern education.

Without Knowing

Mark Nepo | Posted 06.28.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

Our first encounters with love shape us and have a lasting impact on how we meet the world. Triggered by a young couple in a café, this poem helped m...

Noah: It's Time for Righteous Anger About the Silent Genocide of Species

Rabbi Warren Stone | Posted 06.22.2014 | Green
Rabbi Warren Stone

The recently released film Noah likewise is a call to all viewers to tread gently on the earth and to treat our environment with care, raising a moral parallel between the flood and the continuing onslaught of climate change on our earth.

Turn Around

Mark Nepo | Posted 06.21.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

It was in a dream in my sixtieth year that I realized that for all my efforts to protect my inwardness from a brutal world, my inwardness is the sourc...

5 Questions for Poets: Part 4

Jonathan Hobratsch | Posted 06.17.2014 | Books
Jonathan Hobratsch

In the 4th part of the National Poetry Month blog, I ask America's best poets to answer five more questions by readers of poetry.

5 Questions for Poets: Part 3

Jonathan Hobratsch | Posted 06.14.2014 | Books
Jonathan Hobratsch

"I know a handful (if not a heartful) of poems by heart. Lines surface and go under. They keep me company, whether on the tip of my tongue or in the basement of my unconsciousness."

In the Interior

Mark Nepo | Posted 06.14.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

This poem speaks to a lifelong journey with my oldest friend Robert. We have known each other for close to thirty years. In the Interior When you le...

5 Questions for Poets: Part 2

Jonathan Hobratsch | Posted 06.08.2014 | Books
Jonathan Hobratsch

Last week, some of America's top poets answered five questions from a pool of questions offered by readers of poetry for National Poetry Month. In this second part of the series, our poets tackle five more of their questions.

For My Brother

Mark Nepo | Posted 06.01.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

During my father's slow avalanche to death, my brother was a tireless advocate on his behalf, a bodhisattva in the way he cleared debris and made things easier for everyone around him. I was in a plane over the Pacific Ocean when I finally wrote this poem for him.

5 Questions for Poets: Part 1

Jonathan Hobratsch | Posted 06.01.2014 | Books
Jonathan Hobratsch

I have decided to celebrate National Poetry Month by submitting questions by readers of poetry to some of the top poets writing in America today.

The Murmur of Life

Mark Nepo | Posted 05.24.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

That our heart can receive and hold anything and that we feel that the intensity of living is too much to bear is a paradox we can only live into. Under what is both unbearable and endlessly uplifting is the murmur of life.

T. E. Hulme: The First Modern Poet?

Oliver Tearle | Posted 05.21.2014 | Books
Oliver Tearle

Who wrote the first modern English poem? When -- and, indeed, where -- was it written? There are numerous candidates, but one could do worse than propose the answer 'T. E. Hulme, in 1908, on the back of a hotel bill.'

Presidential Inauguration Poet Richard Blanco Discusses Journey to Podium

Catherine C. Lutz | Posted 05.19.2014 | Books
Catherine C. Lutz

On the surface, Blanco's story is that of a Cuban-American boy trying to figure out where he belongs: geographically, culturally and sexually. But as he intimately and expertly related through his poetry, his emotional experiences are universal.

4 Ways To Get Your Poetry Noticed

| Posted 03.19.2014 | Books

By Writer's Relief Staff: Generally, literary journal editors encourage authors to submit three to five poems at once for consideration. The que...

Out of the Way

Mark Nepo | Posted 05.17.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

Kindness and suffering are wordless teachers, ready to bend us and soften us until we accept that we are here; that, try as we will, we can't build our way out of existence or dream our way out of being human. Once opened in this way, we come to realize that the only way out is to love being here.

The Dilation of What Seems Ordinary

Mark Nepo | Posted 05.03.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

The normal way we meet the world is full of bumps and bruises and noise that scratches up the heart. And yet, if we can endure and lean in, we are widened and opened to a depth that weaves the tissue of the Universe together.

Heartwood

Mark Nepo | Posted 04.28.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

An old friend died several years ago. At the time, I wrote this poem. I still can't delete his phone number from my contact list. To do so would seem so final, but I also still feel in contact with him.

To Cultivate Wonder

Mark Nepo | Posted 04.22.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

We have only a few seconds to love the wonder out in the open or those we meet will swallow it. Seconds to let this timeless resource come into our knowing so it can save us from the brutality of surface living.

Legacy

Mark Nepo | Posted 04.13.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

In the days after my father died, there were many quiet moments and many stories told. It was a small thing my mother said while crying over tea that allowed me to connect these small stories of my great-grandfather, my grandfather and my father. I never realized that they form a legacy I'm a part of.

The Moon Hears My Confession

Mark Nepo | Posted 03.29.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

When I remember that I'm one small part in a very complex and numinous Whole, I may feel frustrated but I feel engaged in an ongoing process of aliveness that keeps demanding my cooperation.

Midway in Our Journey

Mark Nepo | Posted 03.23.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

Part of everyone's journey in life is to arrive at precipice or fork in the road or at the end of a path and to realize we no longer know our way. Hard as this is, this is where the inner journey begins, when all we've carried has served its purpose and now we must burn it for warmth and to see what's next.

Bone Vision

Tammi Truax | Posted 01.23.2014 | Fifty
Tammi Truax

Tammi Truax is an emerging writer, having spent her first twenty professional years working with children and families, specializing in literacy. Chil...

Aging

Mark Nepo | Posted 03.15.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

My father used to quip that old is always 10 years out from wherever you are. I'm 62 and to think of how old I once thought this was! What I'm learning is that age is not the distance from the beginning of our lives but the distance at any moment from the heart of our aliveness.

Somewhere

Mark Nepo | Posted 03.09.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

No matter what we're going through, the opposite is happening somewhere else at the same time. This awareness doesn't minimize our own experience but adds context and medicine to the truth of any given moment, the way a rip in the curtains we have drawn seems like a violation of the privacy we so wanted though it is only letting the light of the world in. This poem tries to understand this paradox.

Next to a Gull

Mark Nepo | Posted 03.01.2014 | Healthy Living
Mark Nepo

When in the crucible of a difficult life change, I went to be by the sea, to clear my head, to open my heart, to imagine next steps. What I found was the beauty and resilience of life waiting under my trouble and all trouble. It helped me look beneath my pain and confusion to remember that while what happens when we're alive can be alarming and disappointing, the fact that we're alive is all that matters.