Last week I held a successful poetry reading during lunch hour at my place of work. There was a good turnout, and everyone seemed to enjoy the mental break from their daily grind of phonecalls and meetings. One gentleman brought his own poems to read, as I had stated in the invitation for the event, and also bought a copy of my book. So, I have befriended another fan of poetry at work. Over the weekend, I enjoyed reading a copy of Hafiz's 50 Ghazals, which this poet friend kindly lent me.
As much as I am writing poetry when inspiration strikes (or I have the motivation to dig down and find a poem), I am concentrating on reading the works of other contemporary and classical writers. I am gaining new appreciation for the common link all poets share - the eagerness to write about our worlds and put it into one world. There is no difference of time. A poem could have been written 200 years ago or 1000 years ago - the human condition doesn't change and our relationship with nature doesn't change.
Back to the reading; I was thrilled to have the support of my colleagues, and even those who were not able to attend showed interest afterwards and shared their encouragement. I tend to vibrate after having an unexpected discussion about the importance of poetry and the arts, and the basic recognition that we are not all simply slaves at our desks, but breathing people with whole passions and universes away from our 8-hour work days. If we are lucky enough to briefly combine our two selves, our worlds unite and new galaxies are formed. I was asked whether I have considered organizing another poetry reading at work. The answer is an enthusiastic "yes".
Random Acts of Poetry is also quickly approaching, and my poet friends are currently hanging out at The Poet Tree outside Munro's Bookstore on Government St. in the afternoons (for you locals!) reading their poems and giving them away on beautiful postcards to passers-by. Poetry is everywhere. It is an entity that is alive and well, and being well-fed, and it is clearly being sought and found by all those in need.