April 2017

Part II





April is a busy month filled with wonderful celebrations. While my first April newsletter focused on April Fool's Day, this one has two more causes for celebration-National Poetry Month and Earth Day.
National Poetry Month was inaugurated by the Academy of America Poets in 1996, and has become a widespread celebration encompassing from schools to publishers to booksellers and consumers. There are numerous ways to celebrate National Poetry Month including: 

        • Attending poetry readings
        • Participating in a Poem in Your Pocket Day
        • Suggesting the "Dear Poet Day" to a young person
        • Writing a poem a day
        • Memorizing a poem
        • Finding a favorite poem to honor
        • Reading Edward Hirsh's essay, "How to Read a Poem
        • Creating a recipe in poetic form
        • Preparing for Mother's Day and Father's Day by writing a poem
National Earth Day is April 22 nd and it marks the anniversary of the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970. It's a day to honor the earth and the concept of peace. I remember when that day was initiated. I was in my teens and was very serious about the environment. Unlike my friends, I refused to learn how to drive. Instead, I rode my bicycle, Artemis around the neighborhood, picking up and crushing aluminum cans that I would recycle, earning about five cents a can.
Here are some things you can do to honor Earth Day:
        • Plant a tree or new plant
        • Start a vegetable garden
        • Make a meal with locally-grown vegetables and fruits
        • Set up a bird feeder
        • Clean up trash in a local park
        • Organize poetry readings on the subject
        • Understand how climate change works
        • Join an environmental group

Poetically yours,
Diana Raab, PhD

Poetry Reading. 
"Spirits in the Air."  The Good Lion. Santa Barbara, CA. 
April 4, 2017, 6:30-7:30 pm.
~ Suggested Reading ~
The Analyst by Molly Peacock (poems)
Anyone who has ever seen a therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist, or those who are even curious about this type of relationship-will find that this book resonates with them. Not only is the book about the powerful connection that can develop between patient and clinician, but, it also illustrates how situations can change on the flip of a dime...and we never know what that change will entail. 

In Peacock's case, her therapist of 40 years succumbed to a stroke which resulted in a role reversal, as Peacock became her therapist's pillar of strength as she had been for Peacock over the previous four decades. There's a captivating intimacy shared in this book between patient and clinician woven with compassion and a great deal of wit.
As a friend and someone who has worked with Peacock, I cannot offer enough kudos for the kind of poet she is and the enthusiasm she has for poetry. I have so many favorite poems in this collection, but an excerpt of "Ruby Roses, Kiss Goodbye," gets to the heart of the relationship: "You, who saved me from hardening/let me know harden now/but walk into the world, disarmed/yet escorted by these emissaries/two ruby rose earrings, in echo/of years ago, when I passed my hand,/arm brushing my ear as I sobbed,/back to you behind me in your chair..."

This book is amazingly crafted, with skill, precision and unmatched creativity, just like all of Peacock's work.
Diana is a regular blogger for:

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