Celebrate National Poetry Month with ROMP
In the world of poetry, much is happening this month because—just in case you didn’t know it—April is National Poetry Month. This is the month that the Rural Oklahoma Museum of Poetry (ROMP) holds its annual festival Wonder City Wordfest, which was canceled for obvious reasons this year.
But ROMP has much going on online if you choose to participate.
POEM LIFE Poem a Day: Get a brief message and a poem written by ROMP director Shaun Perkins in your email inbox each day. Here are some comments about this list:
“I really am loving my daily dose of poetry, and I’m grateful that you share your gift so generously.”—Jen W.
“Your poems waiting to be read make me glad I get email!” –Linda S.
“I like reading and listening to your writing.”—Dan. C.
This email also includes an audio clip of the message and poem that you can listen to.
POEM LIFE Podcast: Perkins is also producing a podcast called POEM LIFE that is a forensic study of a life in poetry. In other words, it is an exploration of what makes a person become a poet.
“I have saved poems from the time I started writing them in grade school, so I have a wealth of material to study and make all kinds of theoretical conclusions about,” said Perkins about the podcast.
“But the podcast is not just personal and not just for poetry-lovers. It explores the ways what we read and experienced as children affected our lives as adults, too.”
You can listen to the podcast on any device that has speakers. The episodes are short, normally 20-25 minutes.
April Group Poems: Each day in April on ROMP’s Facebook page, participants are writing a group poem with a prompt. People have all day to contribute a line or phrase and the next day Perkins puts all the lines together into a poem and posts it. To participate, just LIKE Rural Oklahoma Museum of Poetry on Facebook and check out the posts each day.
Here is the group poem for the 4th of April. The prompt was to simply write a line with the word “four” in it. Twenty-three people contributed to this poem.
Four figures stood at the cardinal points
One, two, three, four.
Every Human Has Four Endowments – Self-Awareness, Conscience, Independent Will, And Creative Imagination.
School was cut to 4 days a week
Four score and we still want more
Three four shut the door
Four is enough, at least for now
Four monkeys dancing
Four at war
Four on the floor.
And then, we were a family of four
A set of four.
But now the queen saw brown spots on her hand
and four whiskers over her lip
Four riders set forth four fortnights ago but have still not arrived at the fort.
Horses of the Fourlokolypse
Four strong winds
Four calling birds
Four kids is way too many
Four seasons, four loves.
Four leaf clover
More than 3 and less than 5 non prime yet so alive…four survives.
Oklahoma Poem Contest: The annual contest that ROMP sponsors for writing poems about Oklahoma has an extended deadline of April 18. Oklahoma residents can write a poem celebrating the state. More details and entry form are located under CONTESTS on the ROMP website.
ROMP Rummage Free Book Service: The ROMP Rummage Store, in downtown Locust Grove, supports the work of the museum, but it has been closed since March 14 because of the virus. Perkins is offering a free service from the store for local people who need books to read. You can request books, and she will put 5-10 of them together for you and leave them on a designated date on the bench outside Wonder City Coffee for you to pick up.
Poetry Buttons & Magnets: The rummage store, poet’s retreat, and museum are all closed because of the virus. According to Perkins, the retreat and museum will be okay for a while, though insurance and utility bills still need to be paid. The main concern is the rummage store, where rent, utilities and insurance still need to be paid and no income is coming in. Thus Perkins has been making poetry buttons and magnets as a fundraiser so she will not lose the lease on the rummage store.
The buttons and magnets are all one-of-a-kind and include lines of poetry from famous poems and poems by Perkins, with artwork in the background. You can see some of them and order them at ROMPoetry.com. You can use a check, credit card or PayPal, and the buttons or magnets will be mailed to you.