So, y’all, it turns out that every July 20th is Take Your Poet to Work Day – a day in which you print out a version of your favorite poet and carry him or her with you to work (or wherever you are going) and post pictures and whatnot. It’s kind of like a Word Nerd Flat Stanley.
This is the first year that I am hearing of it, and, of course, as a lifelong poetry loving word nerd, I am all about this.
Since I write and study from home, I decided to both bring one of my very favorite poets to work here today – and also to share some poems by poets that I love.
Some of them are classics; some are newer. All of them are dear to me for one reason or another – and I am stoked to get to pass them along.
(Several have been posted here before as part of other posts because they are my heart.)
Also, I’ve had a hard time pairing down my choices – there are so many I love – and I can’t say I’ve been tremendously successful – so bear with me. There are just so many wonderful poets and poems and I wish I could share them all with you. ❤
The poet I “brought to work,” pictured above for this post is Mary Oliver. I’ve posted several of her poems over the years and, most recently, wrote about her when she passed away. Two of her poems that I especially love are “The Summer Day” and “Wild Geese.”
With a completely different vibe – but still just as much a favorite of mine – I love the work of modern poet Maggie Smith. In fact, just in the past few weeks, I’ve shared my favorite poem of hers, “Good Bones.”
A more classic poet whose pieces are beloved, Robert Frost, is dear to my heart as well. Among those I particularly enjoy is “Acquainted with the Night.”
Even going back further, I can’t leave out the works of Emily Dickinson.
A beloved poem – by one of my most loved poets since I first heard her reading at President Clinton’s first inauguration when I was in middle school (I cut out the inaugural poem from the newspaper the next day and hung it on my wall) – is Maya Angelou’s “Still I Rise.”
(I have the title inked on my collarbone. ❤ )
Another poem that is special to me in a deeply personal way is the e.e. cummings poem, “i carry your heart with me,” that our dear friend Chad read at our wedding.
And, of course, no self-respecting word nerd – who wrote about 17 papers on Sylvia Plath in the days of her youth 😉 – can neglect to include a Plath poem, in this case, “Crossing the Water.”
A contemporary – and friend of Plath’s – Anne Sexton is another favorite. First, here is a favorite Sexton poem that I have always found to be incredibly powerful, “Her Kind.”
Also, as I was writing this, I came across an article about the lives of Sylvia Plath and Anne Sexton and their relationship that I found fascinating so I wanted to share it if anyone else would like to read it:
On Independence Day, I posted Nikita Gill’s “Fire” – and I love it. She has many poems that are wonderful so it was hard to decide which to share but another that I think is important is “What I Weigh.”
We will definitely have another poetry day – because there are SO many more I want to share.
For now, I want to close with a poem that I first read in long form on a tombstone at the cemetery where my grandparents are buried. It’s called “Desiderata” and it is just lovely. ❤
Be well, everybody. Take care of yourselves and each other.
Grace and Blessings.