World Poetry Day: Celebrating linguistic diversity
World Poetry Day is a day dedicated to celebrating the gift of words. We have praised poets for their mastery of language and ability to capture human emotion in verse from ancient times. Today, poetry continues to be a powerful form of expression that transcends boundaries and languages because it communicates on so many levels.
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When is World Poetry Day?
World Poetry Day is celebrated every year on the 21st of March. UNESCO declared it in 1999 to promote the enjoyment and appreciation of poetry.
The day is observed by reading poems or being involved in poetry-related events to promote world peace, understanding between different cultures, tolerance for others’ viewpoints as well communicating feelings through various means such as music lyrics without having words set on paper.
Why celebrate World Poetry Day?
Poets like Maya Angelou and Rabindranath Tagore have influenced the world with their words. They both wrote about topics that would be taboo at one time but were able to transcend boundaries because they communicated on so many levels, whether through heartache or racial equality in society as a whole.
World poetry day is a celebration of the gift that words are. Poets have always been able to take something and change it into an idea, or feel so deeply about what they see in society today, even if their voice was unheard at one point-just like Maya Angelou did during her time as part African American living with racism for 30 years before she found fame through literature.
We celebrate poetry for all of its contributions to the world, but most importantly, for what it teaches us about ourselves. From love and heartbreak to politics and human rights, poetry can connect with people across time and cultures in ways that nothing else can.
The most important lesson of poetry, though, is the power it has to change our perspectives on life, looking at something as mundane or straightforward like a flower differently because you’re told about its beauty by someone who’s experienced pain from losing their loved one, too soon.
On this day, we celebrate all poets past the present future for everything they have brought into society and remember what makes them so great: words!
Where do we celebrate World Poetry Day?
You can appreciate poetry nomatter where you are. In your school, at the bookstore or library. Everywhere really! Poetry organisations worldwide put together events to celebrate World Poetry Day in their unique ways.
In 2020 and 2021, with the coronavirus pandemic locking the world down, all the celebrations went digital across social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube. Virtual concerts, panel discussions, poetry readings and workshops all went live from the comfort of peoples homes with hashtag #WorldPoetDay.
Pre-covid-19, Celebrations were much more extensive and festive. There were poetry slams, soapbox contests for those brave enough to take the stage in front of a large audience that would make them stand out from their peers by reciting some original work or performing someone else’s verse through drama as well!
How to celebrate World Poetry Day?
To celebrate WPD, all you have to do is share your favourite poem with the world. You can do this by posting a video of yourself reading it or sharing one from someone else’s social media account. I’m sure you can tell there isn’t a right or wrong way of doing it; the day is all about showing poetry some love.
If you’re feeling adventurous, I invite you to try to write an original poem and post it using the hashtag #WorldPoetryDay. If you think that’s too challenging, try looking at a few work samples from various poets online and see if any words or phrases stand out for whatever reason! You never know what might inspire your verse, and we can all use some inspiration today.
Check out this collection of 52 poetry prompts too, one of these topics may just get your engine running. If you feel like doing more, check your favourite event applications for any live open mic nights of poetry showcases happening in your area. It may be the perfect time to finally get on stage and tick of something on your bucket list.
Many artists like to publish their books around WPD because it is the perfect opportunity to ride the momentum that comes with all the hype around the day. The day is also known for being an opportunity where poets get honoured for their contributions to the arts and culture industries in their communities.
So you can also celebrate the day by buying a poetry book for yourself or a loved one. How romantic, right? You could pick up one of the classics or, better yet, support a local self-published author in your area. For more ideas here’s a list of 50 exciting things you can do with a poem.
Who Celebrates World Poetry Day?
World poetry day is for everyone! It is an excellent opportunity to introduce poetry into your home or classroom and share it with others. Whether you are looking for a new hobby or trying to score some browny points with that girl you like, or just want to be a more cultured person.
World Poetry Day Facts:
UNESCO, an international organisation that advances science and culture for humanity’s benefit, voted to proclaim 21 March as World Poetry Day during their 30th session in 1999, which took place in Paris.
World Poetry Day may not get the same publicity as other holidays, but I think it’s worth celebrating every year worldwide! I hope our articles will continue to educate people about this beautiful art form or even inspire you to dabble with a pen now and again. Heck, maybe you’ll even create a masterpiece in time to share at the celebration!