In 1996, the Academy of American Poets designated April as National Poetry Month “to remind the public that poets have an integral role to play in our culture and that poetry matters.” Twenty-four years later, during this uncertain shelter-in-place April, we turn once more to poetry.
Poet Mary Catherine Harper, who gave a reading on the Warsaw campus in March, shares that during this time especially, “Poetry reading is a vital part of my daily routine. Poetry sustains me.” Adjunct English professor Shari Benyousky, who thinks of poems as conversations, says that writing poetry, “is really helpful therapy these days of being cut off from so many people.”
This year both the Warsaw and Fort Wayne campuses are actively celebrating National Poetry Month. Ivy Tech Warsaw is posting a poem a day to its Facebook page drawing from a range of poets, styles, and themes, including Lynn Ungar’s timely poem “Pandemic.”
Meanwhile, the Ivy Tech Fort Wayne Library is encouraging students, faculty, and staff to write and contribute poems toInk Cloud, the annual poetry publication which showcases campus poetic and artistic talents. With an extended deadline of April 19th, time remains to submit!
Interested in exploring poetry and making it a sustaining part of your life? Here are some resources to start with.
While we all adjust to the uninvited consequences of the pandemic, please consider investing time in your creativity. Few explorations are more transformative and empowering than cultivating your art.
Submissions for the 2020 Ink Cloud publication will remain open until April 19th. Please share your original poetry with us. Original artwork for the magazine’s cover remains just as welcome.
Contingent on student and staff interest and time, the Ink Cloud Open Mic is still possible, but the venue would be moved online. Expect those specifics mid-April. In the meantime, stay safe and create.
What started as a poetry contest to celebrate National Poetry Month in April of 2015 has become an annual Ivy Tech Fort Wayne Library publication. Ink Cloud showcases the poetic and artistic talents of Ivy Tech Fort Wayne students and staff.
This year we embrace the non-competitive nature of the art of poetry by dedicating the event entirely to its contributors. A poem’s merit can speak for itself. But unlike its merit, poetry expects only one thing from you: You will share it.
Anyone who has shared their work knows that the spirit of poetry waits within its release. So share with us! If you choose to share with us, you can expect to be included in 2020’s publication of Ink Cloud. Then join us and your fellow Ivy Tech poets at the Ink Cloud Poetry Reading to listen and be heard!
On January 1st 2019, works copyrighted in 1923 entered the public domain! This is the first “Public Domain Day” since Congress extended copyright in 1998. Books, films, and sheet music copyrighted that year in the United States are now free to use without seeking permission or paying fees. (Only the 1923 editions, if there are later copyrighted editions! Librarians call this the 1923 manifestation of a work.)
Some works from 1923 are startlingly out of touch with current values. The full lyrics of “Yes! We Have No Bananas” – a song refrain my family has sung for years – reveal it is an ethnic caricature. Songs making fun of ethnic groups were popular in the 1920s. The Library of Congress has more examples, plus curricula for teaching about them and about attitudes towards immigrants. As upsetting as such materials may be, having them publicly available is important to understanding our current social climate.
A librarian can help you locate public domain materials, and answer your copyright questions. Here’s to many happy returns of Public Domain Day!