to the poets.

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Wole Soyinka, playwright, poet and Nobel Laureate, reads an original poem written for children at the high-level meeting of the General Assembly on the occasion of the thirtieth anniversary of the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Celebrating the linguistic expression

of our common humanity

Poetry reaffirms our common humanity by revealing to us that individuals, everywhere in the world, share the same questions and feelings. Poetry is the mainstay of oral tradition and, over centuries, can communicate the innermost values of diverse cultures.

In celebrating World Poetry Day, March 21, UNESCO recognizes the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind.

A decision to proclaim March 21 as World Poetry Day was adopted during UNESCO’s 30th session held in Paris in 1999.

One of the main objectives of the Day is to support linguistic diversity through poetic expression and to offer endangered languages the opportunity to be heard within their communities.

The observance of World Poetry Day is also meant to encourage a return to the oral tradition of poetry recitals, to promote the teaching of poetry, to restore a dialogue between poetry and the other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, to support small publishers and create an attractive image of poetry in the media, so that the art of poetry will no longer be considered an outdated form of art, but one which enables society as a whole to regain and assert its identity. As poetry continues to bring people together across continents, all are invited to join in.

“poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.”

-robert frost

 

 

 

credits: photo: UN Photo/Mark Garten, UNESCO

36 responses »

  1. We often seem to be singing from the same song-sheet beth. Yesterday I had a lengthy WApp call with my son’s partner and I told her about our parents’ heritage of using and appreciating language(s). I was a shy kid (I was!) but I also was a very good student and often was chosen to ‘declare’ poems we had to learn at school. I told F that I was standing there in front of the class, rolling up the corner of my apron and declaring:
    Der Brunnen klingt
    ein junger Hahn kräht
    und es tropfen die Tränen der Reben
    Huflattich hebt die samtenen Erden
    und in Nestern von Sonne
    rollen sich duftende Katzen….. etc etc etc
    (Albin Zollinger – 1895-1941)

    I didn’t know the first thing of what I was declaring and thought the poem utterly stupid and silly. But my parens explained to me the beauty of words and how well the (modern) poet had expressed the situations and feelings – and somehow all this has stuck with me and my siblings – we are all great readers, writers (well 2 of 4 children anyway plus my mum who is still alive and writes although she is legally blind) and we all LOVE good language.

    rough translation of this first (of two) verse:
    The fountain murmers (sounds),
    A young cock crows
    And the tears of the vine
    are dripping
    Coltsfoot lifts
    The velvet earth.
    In nests of sun
    Scented cats roll around.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Beth,
    To me Poetry is the elegant interpretations of the creative mind to take us on adventures profound. Through rhythms and rhymes and colors of the mind, the poet surprises and delights us taking us where once only they could go.
    To all poets,
    I thank you for,
    the beauty you create,
    the stories you relate
    in ways that simulate,
    the mind to soar
    Lol If only I were a poet my thank you would be so much better.
    Don

    Liked by 1 person

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