I consider food to be something of a love language. A home-cooked meal or a care package of freshly baked cookies from a friend or family member never fails to brighten my day. I’m not much of an accomplished cook myself, but I’ve been known to try my hand at a new recipe or two, in instances when I might like to convey my own appreciation. Both preparing and consuming food can be physical pleasures, but sharing it—that just feels good for the soul.
Similarly, physical acts, such as moving pens or eyeballs across paper in the creation or consumption of poetry, are accompanied by a more spiritual or emotional pleasure. A poem might spark a recognition of similarity or provoke a warm feeling of understanding. It might inspire great emption or enlighten the reader about a new experience. It can start a conversation, or add to one. Poetry’s not about telling a reader about emotions, it’s about sharing them.
National Poetry Month is a great opportunity to remember the generosity of poetry. All month long, we’ll be directing your attention to poets who have sought to share their thoughts, feelings and beliefs through verse, and we’ll be offering you a wide variety of ways to enjoy their work.
Keep reading for a list of poetry resources available at the Porcupine’s Quill for your browsing pleasure:
- Top Poetry Picks—a list of a dozen poetry collections selected by PQL Publisher Tim Inkster as being among the very best published during the press’ history.
- The Essential Poets Collection—a landing page with everything you ever wanted to know about the series, which features the work of iconic Canadian poets in volume that are beautiful, accessible and affordable.
- The Unpacking Poetry Teaching Guide—a sample lesson plan to teach the Essential Poets (for example, The Essential Anne Wilkinson) in the classroom.
- Broadsides—a selection of free, downloadable, high-resolution printables featuring poems by a variety of PQL poets. Use them as décor or as a lovely keepsake.
- The PQL eStore Poetry Catalogue—the complete listing of poetry ebooks available for download through the PQL eStore for only $4.99. Be sure to take advantage of the coupon code above!
What’s happening this month…
Perhaps fittingly, this month we will be working on publication of a new addition to the Essential Poets series—The Essential Elizabeth Brewster. This twenty-second volume in the series, selected by poet and artist Ingrid Ruthig, shines a spotlight on the questioning, conversational poetry of Elizabeth Brewster, a New Brunswick-born poet who went on to settle in Saskatchewan. Brewster’s work voices a female perspective that has been historically silenced, and approaches themes of selfhood and isolation from outside of the dictates of tradition. It’s a beautiful addition to this must-have series. Pre-order your copy today!
On the Internet.
P.C. Vandall, author of the smart and sassy poetry collection The Blue Moth of Morning, will be participating in the Isle of the Arts Festival’s “CoRvid Cabaret” on Saturday, April 10. Visit the Isle of the Arts Festival website for information on how to register and tune into this Zoom event.
In the World.
April 13 is Scrabble Day, which is the perfect excuse for all us word nerds to brush up on our vocabulary.
April 17 is International Haiku Poetry Day.
Write a little poem
Better make it a good one
Or for shame, writer
And finally, April 27 is Tell a Story Day. It doesn’t matter whether it’s fiction or truth, prose or verse—just enjoy the opportunity to spin an entertaining yarn for those around you.
From the porcupette’s corner.
The porcupette has to admit to not being quite herself lately. I’m sure I’m not the only one for whom external pressures are starting to take their toll. I’ve been feeling as if it takes me twice as long to accomplish half as much. Don’t get me started on my normal level of analysis, which always feels just out of reach nowadays. Call it brain fog or stress or what have you; this is all to say that if you, too, are having trouble concentrating, you are not alone!
But despite the fog, I am pleased to say that this month I quite enjoyed a busy day of pitch meetings with Canadian film and television producers, and was pleased to meet with our friends at the Literary Press Group regarding the titles from our upcoming season. And with several grant applications behind us, it’s time to start looking ahead to more editorial and marketing pursuits. Bring on the new books … and wish me luck!
Thanks everyone for checking in to see what PQL has on tap for this National Poetry Month. Check back weekly for deals, giveaways and more!