Monday, April 5, 2010

Celebrate National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month. Celebrate the written and spoken word with the following resources...

On the Web

  • Library of Congress Poetry Resources - Covers resources at the Library of Congress, including webcasts, digital collections, exhibitions, learning materials, and other features. Also provides links to guides to finding a poem, locating poetry criticism, official state poems, poets laureate, and more. History buffs will want to look at the section on Civil War poetry, which features poets like Walt Whitman, Henry Timrod (a/k/a the "Laureate of the Confederacy") and Herman Melville.

  • Writing About Poetry - Purdue's Online Writing Lab (OWL) covers the basics on how to write a clear, confident, well-supported essay about poetry.

  • Poetry Lesson Plans - EDSITEment, a website of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), has put together a variety of lesson plans covering various types of poetry, including epic poems, haiku, sonnets, modernist poetry, limericks and nonsense poems.

  • Scholastic.com's Teacher Site - Features an interactive poetry-making machine and inspirational activities for the budding poets in your classroom.

  • Poets.org - The host of this site, the Academy of American Poets, administers a wide variety of programs, including National Poetry Month (April), the largest literary celebration in the world; online educational resources providing free poetry lesson plans for high school teachers; and the Poetry Audio Archive, a collection of over 700 recordings dating back to the 1960s. The Poets.org website provides a wealth of content on contemporary American poetry.

  • The Poetry Foundation - Publisher of Poetry magazine, the Poetry Foundation "works to raise poetry to a more visible and influential position in American culture." Use their Poetry Tool to look up poems by poet, category, occassion, title, first line or by glossary term. Listen to the poem of the day, peruse the reading guides and check out the poetry programs for children (recommended reads, activities and tips on introducing poetry to children).
  • PBS NewsHour Extra: Poetry - Along with in-depth profiles of contemporary poets and poetry, features short video documentaries of Americans reading their favorite poems.

Online Library Resources Available 24X7 With Your Library Card

  • Bloom's Literary Reference Online - Find literary criticism resources, primary sources, biographies and reviews on specific poets, poems and/or types of poetry.

  • Contemporary Literary Criticism Select - Search the subject guide for poetry for critical essays on contemporary poets and authors.

  • The Oxford Premium Collection - Under Subject Reference, click on Literature. There you'll find The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Poetry in English, "the most comprehensive guide to modern poetry in English. Celebrated poets offer intriguing views on their fellow poets, such as Tom Paulin on Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney on Robert Lowell, and Anne Stevenson on Sylvia Plath. 1,500 poets are covered from W.H. Auden to Benjamin Zephaniah. There is worldwide coverage, including America, Britain and Ireland, New Zealand, Trinidad and Zimbabwe. There are also entries on magazines, movements, and critical terms."

Visit Your Library

If you're looking for resources at the library, check out our resources under the subject headings poetry and poets or simply browse through the 800s (Literature), particularly the section 808.1. For children, there are hundreds of titles that will help introduce the younger set to the joys of poetry.

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