April 11, 2017
Note From Rochelle
Happy National Library Week and National Poetry Month! In honor of both, I’ll be teaching poetry to children at two libraries in Milwaukee. If you have children ages 5-12, bring them by for a class on Picture Poetry:
Tuesday, April 11, 3:30-5, East Library
Wednesday, April 12, 3-4, Shorewood Library
Throughout my writing and coaching career, I’ve learned that working steadily on projects, without a break, leads to burnout. National Poetry Month reminds me that reading and writing poetry can renew my soul. Read on to learn how.
The Write Now! Coach
Celebrate National Poetry Month:
Renew Your Soul with Poetry
by Rochelle Melander
“To pay attention, this is our endless and proper work.” —Mary Oliver
I struggle to be present. Instead of simply doing what I’m doing, I’m often thinking about what needs to be done or what I should have done or what I could be doing.
I’m not alone. My husband recently sent me an article about a research study that concluded: “people spend 46.9 percent of their waking hours thinking about something other than what they’re doing, and this mind-wandering typically makes them unhappy.” (Wandering Mind)
Reading, teaching and writing poetry helps me to connect to the present moment. In Haiku: Asian Arts and Crafts for Creative Kids, author Patricia Donegan writes: “Haiku is a way to slow down in our modern, speedy world. When we slow down, we are able to catch the moment of haiku, and then we can relax and appreciate things more.” (p. 14).
Mary Oliver talks about the work of humanity as this: paying attention. Reading and writing poetry can help you do that. Here are activities to help you celebrate National Poetry Month and connect with the present moment: