All. The. Poetry.

As with last Friday where I was off from work, this Friday, today, I also am off from work, this time, though for a vacation day. Like last Friday, I also am not going anywhere, thanks to the weather. Last week, it was snow that kept me in; this week, a bitter cold with wind chills below zero (Fahrenheit). I am spending the day the same as last week, though, with reading.

Last Friday I finished two books:

  • Heaven, My Home, the second in the Highway 59 series, by Attica Locke.
  • How To Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi.

with the former being better than the latter for me. It wasn’t that Xendi’s ideas weren’t good, it’s just that I didn’t care for the way the book was structured. Locke’s book, on the other hand, flowed for me like poetry in places.

This Friday, in keeping with that theme of poetry, I am starting by reading and listening to poetry. Last week I mentioned signing up for the Academy of American Poets Poem-a-Day service as part of Poetry Reading Challenge 2020. This past week I signed up for a poem-a-day podcast called The Slowdown with former Poet of the Laureate of the United States Tracy K. Smith mentioned by Melissa Firman in her Sunday Salon post last week. So now even though, as part of the challenge, I intended to pick a favorite poem each week from the Poem-a-Day service and write about it here on the blog, now I am split. Should I also pick a favorite from Smith’s podcast, produced in partnership with the Poetry Foundation and write about it here or is that too much?

While I’m not sure, for today, I think I’ll just share one favorite poem from both with a link to the poem or the podcast or the poet reading the poem. This week’s poem is, as shared by the Academy of American Poets is “Aubade” by Ishion Hutchinson:

As with last week’s poem, I am most impressed with the way the lines break, especially at the end of the poem:

and immeasurable slow leaves bring down our morning.

Today, I might also dip into a couple of books of poetry borrowed from the library at a local state university a few weeks ago. Then later in the weekend, I want to continue reading Pillar of Fire:ย America in the King Years 1963-65, the second part of Taylor Branchโ€™s history of the Civil Rights Movement in America, that I began last weekend and will be reading over several weekends, if not several months. I might also read the next Nero Wolfe novel by Rex Stout: Where There’s A Will. And while this past week, I didn’t do great with my planned short bursts of reading mentioned two weekends ago and only read one Sherlock Holmes short story, I hope to read a few more maybe this weekend and next week.

So…how is your reading going this past week? Or anything good you’re planning to read this weekend? Anything to recommend (or not)? Please share in the comments.


Also referenced in this post:

30 thoughts on “All. The. Poetry.

  1. I am impressed that you are sticking to your poetry reading so well. It sounds like you are enjoying the process. Hope you have a great week.

  2. “Even days coming are already gone too soon.” That line from the poem (maybe it’s what the trees are saying) seems so true at this time of my life.

    I’ve always been a poem person. The one book I took along with me when I worked for a summer in Yellowstone Park was the Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry. Poetry is one type of reading that slows me down. I write poetry, too. I went through a phase when I was in my early thirties where I sent off poems to small presses, and I had a dozen or so poems published. I would love to join in some sort of poetry celebration online. I’m thinking I may do something for April, National Poetry Month. One of my favorite collections is called Good Poems. It’s filled with poems that are poems that everyday sorts of people like me might like to hear.

    Enjoy your time off!

  3. I worked late today so there wasn’t much reading going on. The weather was nice but tomorrow is supposed to be cold (48F).

    I love the idea of poetry but don’t do well with it. I really need to put more effort into it.

  4. I had plans last year to spend more time on poetry – I was actually going to learn some poems after hearing how that’s a good way to keep the brain active and help stave off dementia. It disappeared into the land of good intentions after poem number 3……….
    So I admire the very organised way you are going about your challenge.

  5. I actually read this week, and I’m visiting blogs, so I had a good week too.

    It is -15 here in Minnesota, with windchill below -30.

    Whichever way you decide to go with the poetry, it’s a good idea writing about it. I should read poetry more. But I have so little time for reading right now, that I focus on book club books.

    1. So you were like “hold my beer”? ๐Ÿ˜‰ Yep. You got us beat. I was expecting to hear from the folks in California telling me how “cold” it is, in the 70s. ๐Ÿ™‚ So far, I’m not getting much reading of poetry done today, as I’m visiting blogs, but that’s alright too.

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