I'm excited today to share about my 2019 National Poetry Month poem-a-day project ARTSPEAK!, now in its 5th year! Each year I dedicate the month of April to writing poems inspired by art. (Which means I'll be pressing "pause" on my Butterfly Hours Memoir Project during this month. I'll pick up in May with the next prompt, which is "gloves.")
The first year (2015) I didn't really have a theme, except ARTSPEAK!, in which my goal was (and continues to be!) to listen to what the art was trying to say... and these were all persona poems. I chose pieces exclusively from the National Gallery of Art online collection, with a particular focus on pieces with kid appeal.
2016 I wrote poems inspired by one of my new (at the time) books: FRESH DELICIOUS: Poems from the Farmers' Market. I called it ARTSPEAK: Plant. Grow. Eat!
2017 I focused on people and animals -- ARTSPEAK: Portraits
2018 I continued my art education -- and added diversity (the NGA collection is woefully not representative of many cultures/ethnicities) -- with ARTSPEAK: Harlem Renaissance
And this year, I am throwing everything I've got into my 2019 One Little Word. I give you.... ARTSPEAK: Happy!
This has its roots in a letter I received from a student. Here's my tweet about it:
Kind of a wake up call, isn't it?
I searched for art not just at NGA, but Google Arts & Culture and also WikiArt. I am loving the pieces I discovered! I hope you will, too. As always, I invite you to join along, if you're feeling artsy. :)
To get the happy juices flowing, I decided to write a poem inspired by the art I selected for my badge... and including some of my goals for this series:
Give Me a Happy Poem
after "The Sky Was Yellow" by Enrico Baj
Give me a happy poem
a burn-away-the-blues poem –
where words sizzle,
Make me giggle,
make me gasp!
Show me a world that radiates heat,
even on the darkest
- Irene Latham...and here is a video! Yes, for the first time I am sharing these via video instead of just audio. Eep! I'll be learning and (hopefully) improving all month long. :)
I look forward to all the goodness from all of you... and of course I'm excited to see where our Progressive Poem will lead us! We'll get started on Monday over at Matt's place. Yay!