Sixteen years ago, the Academy of American Poets declared April National Poetry Month. From Tarrytown to Travis Country, Austin abounds with over 1,500 poets! What better way to celebrate Poetry Month than to celebrate alongside them?
This is the line of thinking for Austin Poetry Society, an organization that has been celebrating Austin poetry for over 60 years: “Since Austin has at least one poetry reading almost every day of the year, we think of Austin as a poetry city,” explains Elzy Cogswell, beloved President of the Austin Poetry Society (APS). If Austin is a poetry city, the Austin Poetry Society and its 150+ members are the glue.
APS is one of a handful of reasons why Austin provides such a haven for poets, offering free monthly meetings, online newsletters, critique groups, contests, open mics and more. Cogswell’s 501(c)3 non-profit connects poets and poetry-lovers alike not only to a plethora of Austin-area poetry events, but to one another and to the community at large.
“APS regularly facilitates public poetry programs, initiatives, readings and workshops, and makes continual efforts to contribute time and resources to other literary organizations, schools, and individuals that engage in literary efforts. The chief goal of APS is to bring poetry to every member of the Austin community.”
This April, why not celebrate National Poetry Month alongside the Austin Poetry Society? It meets third Saturdays from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., often at Twin Oaks Library on South 5th. Visit the website for more information.
The following lines of poetry, complements of the president himself, come from “Ars Poetica” by Archibald MacLeish:
“A poem should be equal to:
For all the history of grief
An empty doorway and a maple leaf
The leaning grasses and two lights above the sea —
A poem should not mean
Happy Poetry Month!
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