25 Fascinating Facts about World Poetry Day 2015

World Poetry Day is about love of the art form

For the love of World Poetry Day 2015. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

Today is March 21, and that means… it is World Poetry Day, an occasion to celebrate! Here are 25 fascinating facts about World Poetry Day that you might not yet know:

      1. It is a global initiative to encourage reading, writing, teaching, and publishing of the poetic art form.
      2. 1999 was a magical year; it held the declaration that began World Poetry Day. UNESCO adopted it during its 30th session in Paris. Here is a copy of the proclamation.
      3. March 21 is also the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
      4. National Poetry Month occurs in April, AFTER World Poetry Day (they are NOT synonymous)
      5. Are you looking for a resource to teach children about poetry? Here you go: Eight Steps for Teaching Kids Poetry.
      6. Even if World Poetry Day lands on a weekday (it’s a Saturday in 2015), it is not a public holiday.
      7. In Spanish, World Poetry Day is Día Mundial de la Poesía.
      8. The day is also meant to strengthen the ties between poetry and other art forms, such as music, drawing, and dance.
      9. Here is a quote from the UNESCO Director-General for World Poetry Day 2015: ” Poetry is the universal human song, expressing the aspiration of every woman and man to apprehend the world and share this understanding with others, through the arrangement of words in rhythm and meter.”
      10. Two ways to celebrate the day are by analyzing a new poem of your choice or encouraging kids to read poetry.
      11. The environment and poetry go hand in hand for Brock University’s Sustainability Poetry Contest.
      12. 2015 is the 100th anniversary of poet Akaki Tsereteli’s death (1840-1915).
      13. Nguyen Du was born 250 years ago (1765-1820).
      14. Here is a fascinating collection of art from the Christchurch Art Gallery in New Zealand that ties together word and image.
      15. Many people see poetry as being outdated – it’s not! Take a look at all of the amazing WordPress poetry blogs!
      16. Why not read a collection of poems about peace on World Poetry Day? John Lennon would approve.
      17. Poetry is powerful; it encourages readers’ imaginations and spurs emotions.
      18. Take a poetry walk. Write down one line from every image you see around you and then compile it together for an amazing poem at the end of the walk.
      19. Follow the hashtag #WorldPoetryDay on Twitter on March 21 to learn about events happening around the world and read fantastic poems.
      20. Are you in Dublin and want to enter a free poetry competition? You’re welcome (courtesy of Ballyroan Library).
      21. Instead of a pub crawl, how about a poetry crawl in which you write a different poem in each coffee house that you visit?
      22. Low on cash? Head to your library and borrow a poetry book, whether it’s March 21 or not.
      23. This is a tough but important read about persecuted poets around the world.
      24. Slam poetry is rocking the modern world. Take a moment to read an article about it or watch a video of a poetry slam competition online.
      25. Thank you to Lord Byron for these beautiful words from “She Walks in Beauty” to read on World Poetry Day: She walks in beauty, like the night
        Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
        And all that’s best of dark and bright
        Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
        Thus mellowed to that tender light
        Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

Please take the time to celebrate World Poetry Day 2015 on March 21! Heck, let’s celebrate the beautiful artistry penned by poets around the world every single day ♥

~Poetic wishes,
Christy xo

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113 thoughts on “25 Fascinating Facts about World Poetry Day 2015

  1. ladysighs

    Poetry certainly isn’t outdated. Some of us are only just discovering it. 🙂 I liked the resource for teaching kids poetry. Good for adults too.
    When I visit a blog with poetry I try to read some out loud. Time doesn’t always allow, but it really makes a difference. I always read my own aloud when I write. I’m sure all poets do. It really helps with the rhythm and choice of words.
    Thanks for making me aware of World Poetry Day. 🙂

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    1. Christy Birmingham Post author

      Oh yes, reading aloud adds a wonderful quality – and I find as a writer it helps me figure out awkward sentences too (or at least that is my hope!). Thanks for the lovely comment, my poetic friend! 🙂

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  2. DG MARYOGA

    To :
    My dearest friend Christy for the exciting journeys of my soul through her emotive poems …

    Listen. Speech is the prudence of the aged
    And time is a passionate sculptor of men
    And the sun stands over it, a beast of hope
    And you, closer to it, embrace a love
    With a “sweet” taste of tempest on your lips… Odysseus Elytis

    Thank you Christy Dear,grand your tribute to Poetry that has the power to enhance the meaning of the words .. ~ Happy World Poetry Day ~ Warm Spring Hugs to you 🙂 ❤

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    1. Christy Birmingham Post author

      Doda, you have the kindest heart ❤ Thank you for sharing the words of Odysseus Elytis to add value to the post, as well as explaining the educational component of World Poetry Day! I appreciate it – it was a nice celebration and I'm glad to have you as a partygoer 🙂

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  3. Rosaliene Bacchus

    Christy, thanks for enlightening me about World Poetry Day. Our world is desperately in need of poets who address the human condition in today’s world.

    Poetry is food for my soul. I thank you and all poets who inspire us and call us to greater good.

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  4. Poetsmith

    Beautiful sharing, Christy! Thank you for encouraging us to enjoy and celebrate this special World Poetry Day. The poetry session I went to had a young 8yr old girl reciting some of her own poetry… they were really creative and good! Enjoy creating your wonderful poems ❤

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    1. Christy Birmingham Post author

      Hi Graciela, you’re the only one to comment on the poetry crawl. Yes, I think it would be so much fun! And another option is to read poetry at each of the coffee houses too – I would totally invite you!

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  5. Debbie

    Golly, I didn’t realize there was such a thing as World Poetry Day — thanks for educating me, Christy! You’ve got some great suggestions there, and since I’ve overcome a bit of my reluctance to let others read some of my poetry, I’ve found just how supportive and encouraging other poets are!! Enjoy your day — we’ve finally got a beautiful one!!

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  6. Clanmother

    Poetry transcends the words that are placed side by side. Poetry reaches deep, deep into our soul and awakens us to the joy of our existance. Robert Frost once said, “I am not a teacher, but an awakener.” I am celebrating with you…

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  7. Pingback: World Poetry Day (2015) | Winding Ways

  8. matthewsimonalexander

    Whilst relying on very patchy wifi (grad student who really doesn’t have any money to spend on data roaming and all that kind of stuff), I’m trying to make an extra special effort to keep checking in on those blogs that ‘move’ me. Christy, your blog is top of that list. Poetry, for those who either have never experienced it, or just don’t see its relevance, is an art form that I believe is as important now as it ever was. And the wonderful thing is that poetry comes in many forms; in fact, it’s a thing that can pass you by without even noticing that you’ve experienced it. It’s the bird sitting on a wire as you pass by. It’s the light changing as clouds first reduce and then expose the sun’s rays. It’s meeting someone for the first time and feeling like you’ve known them the whole of your life. It’s connecting with another, even if that connection is through wifi technology that means you never even get to meet that person face to face. It’s being human. It’s life.

    And for those who want something tangible, something that comes in the form of a poem:

    The moon has nothing to be sad about,
    Staring from her hood of bone.

    She is used to this sort of thing.
    Her blacks crackle and drag.

    From ‘Edge,’ Sylvia Plath

    4 lines.
    27 words.
    31 syllables.
    An infinite number of ways to respond.
    Approximately 16 minutes before the end of World Poetry Day (EST)

    That’s poetry.

    Christy, you are a star.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. Christy Birmingham Post author

      Matthew, your comment delights anyone who is a poet as you truly appreciate the heart that is put into those words we craft. Thank you for that. I am honored that you make time for my words and that you think highly of them. On a more personal note, your sentence “It’s meeting someone for the first time and feeling like you’ve known them the whole of your life” is true as whenever we talk it is like that for me. I am so glad you stopped by on World Poetry Day. You continue to delight me with your words.

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  9. gertloveday

    Took place in a poetry reading for local poets who featured in Best Australian Poems 2014 the other day. 7 in my local area! Obviously the sea is good for creativity. The advice given there was to start the day by reading a poem, before you get sucked into the chores. Would be a good thing to do every day.

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  10. macjam47

    Happy World Poetry Day! (sorry this is late, yesterday we were celebrating our anniversary). I love the quote in item 9, Who does’t love Lord Byron’s poetry (#25)? Tips 18 and 21 sound like a lot of fun. Great list Christy.

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  11. roweeee

    Thanks so much for posting this Christy. I haven’t heard about World Poetry Day before and must try to remember it next year. I love the Byron quote you mentioned. I went to my violin teacher’s wedding this afternoon and she was radiant and reminded me of that verse. Also thank you for visiting my blog because it does get hard to keep track of people using the reader alone and I’m not really keen on having heaps of emails in my inbox.
    Best wishes,
    Rowena

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  12. Dave Small

    Great post Christy.

    I’m also a day late to World Poetry Day. But I pulled a copy of Gerard Manley Hopkins off the shelf and plan to reflect on one of his poems.

    As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame . . .

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  13. Pingback: 25 Fascinating Facts about World Poetry Day 2015 | charles1958

  14. reocochran

    I enjoy Christina Rosetti for her beautiful children’s poetry, as well as Shel Silverstein for his sense of humor in the book, Where the Sidewalk Ends. I like that Dr. Seuss rhymes, although he is not a ‘poet,’ but an author. Christy, I also love the quoted poem about a woman written by Lord Byron.

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  15. Jeri Walker (@JeriWB)

    I get all excited for National Poetry Month in April, but National Poetry Day has yet to ingrain itself in my brain. Maybe now with your post I will be more likely to remember it the next time around. I’ve been feeling the poetic urge lately, so I can’t wait for next month to get here 🙂

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