Amy Lowell wrote, “Without poetry the soul and heart of man starves and dies” (from Amy Lowell, Poetry and Poets: Essays (New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1930) 30-58. Previously published in North American Review 206 (1917): 762-777.) More of her essay can be read at Why Read Poetry
Poetry is one of the art forms that defines our culture. It improves the quality of life both for those who create it and for those who appreciate it, educating and invigorating the citizenry, and enhancing people’s lives by providing them with deeply meaningful experiences.” (Poetry in America, Key Findings, Key Findings.)
John Lundberg wrote for the Huffington Post the story of a poetry reading by Anna Akhmatova in 1944 Moscow that was received with such enthusiastic applause that Stalin recognized her power and wondered who had organized the ovation. Why You Should Read Poetry
Google the question, “Why we read poetry” to find a feast of poetic reasonings on the question of Why!
Laura Beasley is our poet today. Below is a poem she wrote in 2009 about her odyssey with Cancer.
The First Seven
written by Laura Beasley
She helped me by example of what I shouldn’t do.
She helped me with a tape that I should listen to.
She helped me with her presence, a quiet way to share.
He helped me with his smiles, hugs to show he cares.
He helped me with his willingness to be there for his friends.
He helped me with his vision of a love that never ends.
She helped me with her writing which showed what she could feel.
Cancer killed my seven friends who gave me strength to heal.
What a lovely way to thank them.
Oh Laura, you created a beautiful memory of your friends. It is so moving.
Cancer can’t steal the essence of a person, and I’m glad you’re celebrating the gifts from these friends. I survived twice and I know you’re a surviver too. I love your simple, effective, moving poem about these who did not.
XXOO Laura H
Thank you for your comments. I miss you both.
Dear Laura…I lost my youngest sister to cancer over 30 years and not a day goes by that I don’t think of her and wish I had some words of hers to comfort me. I’m sorry your friends have passed, but they will always live on in this beautiful poem. xoxo Liz
Your poetry moves me.
This is beautiful.