National Poetry Month

U.S. Poet Laureate and Academy of American Poets Chancellor Juan Felipe Herrera

poetry month 2016
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about the celebration

about the celebration

This April marked the 20th anniversary of National Poetry Month, which was inaugurated by the Academy of American Poets in 1996. Over the years, National Poetry Month has become the largest literary celebration in the world with schools, publishers, libraries, booksellers, and poets celebrating poetry’s vital place in our culture.

Thank you for joining in the celebration by listing your events and attending other events in your community, displaying this year's poster, participating in Poem in Your Pocket Dayrecommending the Dear Poet project to a young personsigning up to read a Poem-a-Day, and checking out 30 more ways to celebrate.

We hope National Poetry Month's events and activities will inspire you to keep celebrating poetry all year long!

download the national poetry month logo

sponsors & partners 


National Poetry Month Sponsors



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Dear Poet 

A multimedia educational project that invites young people to write letters in response to poems shared by our Chancellors.

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Anne Waldman

Poem in Your Pocket Day

Thousands of individuals across the U.S. carried a poem in their pocket on April 21, 2016. 

find a poem

Poem in Your Pocket Day

Poetry & the Creative Mind

Our annual gala was held at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center in New York City on April 27, 2016.

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Poetry and the Creative Mind


upcoming events

Oct 27 2016

Pulitzer Centennial Poetry Celebration

At this once-in-a-lifetime event, 13 Pulitzer Prize-winning poets will share the stage to read from their own prize-winning collections as well as select poems by past winners. Join us in celebration of their achievement, of the Centennial year of the Pulitzer Prizes, and of PSA's founding role in sponsoring the earliest years of the prize for poetry. Featuring: Rae Armantrout, John Ashbery, Peter Balakian, Carl Dennis, Stephen Dunn, Jorie Graham, Yusef Komunyakaa, Sharon Olds, Gregory Pardlo, Philip Schultz, Vijay Seshadri, Natasha Trethewey, and Charles Wright. The reading will benefit the Poetry Society of America's public programming and signature initiative, Poetry in Motion.

The reading is co-sponsored by The Cooper Union Office of Continuing Education and Public Programs; the New York Council for the Humanities; the Pulitzer Prizes as part of the Pulitzer Centennial Campfire Initiative; and supported by Alfred A. Knopf; Four Way Books; Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Graywolf; HarperCollins; Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; Little, Brown and Company; Louisiana State University Press; W.W. Norton; New Directions; NYRB Poets / New York Review Books; Penguin; University of Chicago Press; Wesleyan University Press. Tickets: 

Admission fee: $15.00
7:00pm to 10:00pm
The Great Hall of the The Cooper Union
7 E 7th Street
10003 New York, New York
Oct 28 2016 to Feb 18 2017

American Stanzas: 2006–2016 with Rachel Eliza Griffiths

Opening reception for American Stanzas: 2006-2016, an exhibit featuring selected photography and mixed media works by poet, photographer, and visual artist Rachel Eliza Griffiths. Exhibit on view through February 18, 2017 Rachel Eliza Griffiths is a poet and visual artist. Her most recent collection, Lighting the Shadow, was a finalist for the 2016 Phillis Wheatley Book Award in Poetry and the 2015 Balcones Poetry Prize. A Kimbilio and Cave Canem Fellow, Griffiths’ literary and visual work has appeared widely including The New York Times, Los Angeles Review of Books, American Poetry Review, and many others. Currently, Griffiths teaches creative writing at Sarah Lawrence College.

Poets House
10 River Terrace
10282 New York, New York
Oct 31 2016

All Hallows’ Eve Poetry Reading

Kimberly Lambright studied critical theory at NYU and creative writing at Eastern Washington University. Her debut poetry collection, Ultra-Cabin, won the 42 Miles Press Poetry Award and was published in 2016. She lives in Austin and is at work on her second book, Doom Glove.

Bianca Stone is a poet and visual artist, and the author of Someone Else’s Wedding Vows, Poetry Comics From the Book of Hours, and artist/collaborator on a special illustrated edition of Anne Carson's Antigonick. She runs the Ruth Stone Foundation & Monk Books with her husband, the poet Ben Pease in Vermont.

Simone Kearney is a writer and visual artist. This year she was a recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship in Poetry. Her chapbook, Days, which combines writing and watercolors, is forthcoming with Monk Books this winter. She is currently completing a degree at the Hoffberger School of Painting at the Maryland Institute College of Arts in Baltimore.

Admission fee: $10.00
6:00pm to 7:30pm
Cornelia Street Cafe
29 Cornelia Street
10014 New York, New York

recent news and updates

May 03 2016
Portland Art Museum's Poem in Your Pocket Day Handouts
From poets across the country challenging themselves to write a poem each day in April; to skyward murals of poems on the rooftops of Miami buildings for fliers to see; to students in Seattle, many of whom are refugees, telling their personal stories through poems broadcast on public radio... National Poetry Month is an umbrella for many innovative and inspiring local celebrations of poetry, which, together, reach tens of millions of individuals.
Apr 27 2016
Speedway & Swan is a one-hour free-format radio program that presents contemporary poetry against a context of musical selections. In each episode, creator and host Brian Blanchfield, who won the 2014 James Laughlin Award, is joined in conversation by a rotating cohost who reads a selection of poetry from his or her personal canon, along with poems from recently released poetry collections.