Written by Clarity Amrein, Library Customer Advisor, St. Bernard Branch, Lea Shull, Library Customer Advisor, Downtown Main Library, and Adam Vorobok, Reference Librarian, Downtown Main Library
April is National Poetry Month and the Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library has plenty of amazing virtual events celebrating wordplay, rhymes, and community. To challenge ourselves, we decided to write about our upcoming events using poetic forms and styles.
The Roots of Poetry in the Garden
Seeds of appealing images were grown
By Robert Hudzik* at the library.
From the Tree were the rustic poems he sown
In a book as rich as a mulberry.
He gathered great minds, all loud and vocal,
Giving space for wordplay from the margin.
Soon became an event for the local
We call it Poetry from the Garden.
For twenty-three years, poets have spoken,
Meeting new friends and making connections.
Even in lockdown, our will’s unbroken
Cause we can Zoom virtual reflections.
For the library is the place to be
For art and poetry, just wait and see!
*Robert Hudzik was a former CHPL staff member who created the annual Poetry in the Garden event.
winter snow to rain flakes before May
(April 13 a moonless Tuesday evening)
3 from the Writers League will play
(7 p.m. through a Zoom screening)
welcome Joanne Greenway (president of the league)
from social work to poetry, let her voice ring
along with Mike Olson (whose words will intrigue)
new poems or old, what will he bring?
Then there is Karen George (who knows no fatigue)
with five chapbooks and two collections under her wing
these three will spring poetry into a summer party
so register now and do not be tardy!
The Second Zoom Event with Elese Daniels and Ashley-Devon Williamston
And on April 20
in the evening at 7 p.m. sharp,
hear the tender musings of two local poets
who deliver straight from the heart.
Meet Ashley-Devon Williamston,
Inkwell host and accomplished writer,
Along with the familiar Elese Daniels-
poet, performer, and bicycle rider.
Of nature and love and heartbreak too
and all things that make life rich and new,
In the garden, these poets expound on
another spring in bloom.
Our Community Poetry Project
Late last summer, the world looked so bleak
I felt so overwhelmed
That I could scarcely speak
Then a blessing fell into my lap
A poem that was so enlivening
It opened up the tap
If just those few words could uplift me
Perhaps poetry would be good
For the whole community
And thus, “You May Contribute a Verse”
Our community poetry project
Was born into the universe.
For the past six months, CHPL has been collecting poetry, surrounding a common theme, from our community. The basis for the project was inspiring one another and putting a voice to our shared experiences. Now, you can enjoy a handful of our featured contributors on the library’s YouTube channel, just in time for National Poetry Month. Enormous thanks to everyone who contributed to this project!