National Poetry Month

National Poetry Month is a literary celebration that is celebrated all over the world by millions of people. The purpose of this holiday is to mark the importance of poetry in our lives and to remember the great poets who have created this poetry. This holiday started in the 1990s, due in part to the successful celebrations of Women’s History Month in March and Black History Month in February.

History of National Poetry Month

During the 1990s, Black History Month and Women’s History Month began to hit their stride and became more successful than at any other time since they had been created. This gave hope to those who wanted to establish a National Poetry Month. So with that in mind, the Academy of American Poets—an organization that includes booksellers, librarians, teachers, publishers, poets, and literary associations—met in 1995 to discuss the need for a month-long celebration of poetry. It was determined that it would have value, and the holiday was officially launched in April of 1996.

Over the years, this holiday has been celebrated not only by academics, poets, and literary groups but also by society in general. For instance, in 2005, the Empire State Building was illuminated to celebrate the 10th anniversary of this holiday.

Interesting Poetry Facts

  • The most popular poetry form in the world is the Haiku.
  • The longest poem in the world is the Indian epic Mahabharata.
  • The shortest poem is ‘The Shortest and Sweetest of Songs’ by George MacDonald. It has just two words: “Come Home.”
  • The oldest poem is the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh.
  • Poetry can increase your vocabulary.
  • World Poetry Day is March 21st.

National Poetry Month Customs & Traditions

The purpose of National Poetry Month hinges on six key areas: 1) to highlight the achievements and legacy of American poets, 2) to encourage poetry reading, 3) to help teachers introduce poetry into the classroom, 4) to increase media coverage of poetry and poets, 5) to increase the publication of poetry books, and 6) to increase support for poetry and the poets who produce it.

The first presidential proclamation of National Poetry Month was made in April of 1996 by President William Clinton. Since then, similar proclamations have been made by mayors and other government officials all across the United States. Also, many bookstores and classrooms all over the country will hang up National Poetry Month posters they obtained from

National Poetry Day is also celebrated through book fairs, conventions, and other activities. However, festivities don’t have to be grandiose. People can also celebrate the day by curling up with their favorite book of poetry and letting it sweep them away.

When is it?
This year (2024)
April 1 Monday
Next year (2025)
April 1 Tuesday
Last year (2023)
April 1 Saturday
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