As you may or may not know, it’s National Poetry Month. And for those of you who may consider poetry an inaccessible or overly “intellectual” pursuit, please reconsider.
After all, there’s poetry everywhere in our lives – from the songs we enjoy on the radio to the Dr. Seuss books we read to our kids to the dialogue we hear spoken on tv and in movies.
Because I so fervently believe in the power of poetry, throughout April I’m going to attempt to post a poem every day – some of them mine, and some from other sources.
I’m always on the prowl for new sources of poetry, and a few weeks ago I stumbled upon a site that collects poems illustrated via video/film/animation. I discovered this charming video of a three-year-old reciting “Litany” by Billy Collins – 2001 Poet Laureate of the United States.
I was amazed that a three-year-old could recite this lovely poem from memory, and even more appreciative of the fact that his mom had encouraged him and helped him to achieve this feat. Obviously, poetry figures prominently in that family’s life, as the boy’s mother notes that her son loves this literary form and welcomes suggestions of other pieces for him to memorize. While he may not understand the meaning of all the words at this young age, he’ll be developing an appreciation for the sound and the rhythm and the feel of the language. And if a three-year-old can do that, I have no doubt that anyone can.
Addendum 4.4.11: For those of you who might be interested in some interpretations of the poem, read the comments section of this blog post from another poetry site. I found the insights very compelling.