The Poetry Reading

Dunlop family cemetery near Mazomanie, WI

Dunlop family cemetery near Mazomanie, WI

I always wanted a career I could continue into my old age.  Alas, given the choices I made, it was not to be.  However, poetry is something that I can do until I am quite elderly as evidenced by some of the readers at yesterday’s reading.  Poets from this area whose poems were for the Wisconsin Fellowship of Poets 2015 Calendar, read at a local bookstore Sunday afternoon.  Using walkers or canes as needed, sometimes having difficulty speaking, they read some really good poems about children and grandchildren, gardens and birds, lost loved ones and dear friends.

The poets at the reading – young and old and in-between – all wrote about some small slice of their experience that touched them enough to write about it.  Poetry is really distilled emotion.  Maybe that’s why people turn to poems when they are grieving or need to smile.

The “best” poems at a reading are usually the ones that evoke laughter from the listeners.  So now I have a small but growing, I hope, file of humorous poems.  For Sunday’s reading, we each read our Calendar poem and had the option of reading one more.

I read a poem I thought had a pretty good punch line, and the audience laughed when I finished.  It was ridiculously gratifying.

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