National Poetry Month

PoetryImage soure: Salem (MA) Public Library, via Flicker Creative Commons


April is National Poetry Month. To celebrate the last couple days of April with poetry, check out these library resources:

The Columbia Granger’s World of Poetry Read the “Featured Poem” or find out what happened on this day in poetry history with “Poets Book of Days.” You can also search for your favorite poet or poem or browse the “Poetry Sources” for different categories of poetry like Children’s Poetry, Love Poetry, or Nature Poetry.

You could also take a look at the journal Poetry. Our online collection includes issues dating from 1998 to the present, and the print copies for the past two years are available in the periodicals section on the second floor.

If you have a special interest in a specific poet, poem, or type of poetry or you want to expand your poetic knowledge, search out Catalog with the keywords you are interested in. For example, you might try a search for “Emily Dickinson,” “The Raven,” or “epic poem.”

Or you can celebrate by creating some poetry of your own!

Scranton + Poetry= Spoetry!

Last night, to mark the National Day on Writing, the Writing Center held a poetry reading and open mic.  The event was a huge success.  Students and staff from across the campus came to hear four featured readers: Dawn Leas, Ginny Grove, Amye Archer, and Stanton Hancock.  The reading was followed by a very well-attended open mic led by CTLE Reading Specialist, Dr. Andree Catalfamo.

The Writing Center would like to thank everyone who came out in support of poetry and spoken word.  We hope this event will be the first of many.  Don’t forget, the Writing Center is located on the 5th floor of the Loyola Science Center, and in the Reilly Learning Commons.  You can make an appointment by calling 570-941-6147, or emailing us here.

Poet Stanton Hancock
Poet Stanton Hancock
Poet and Writing Instructor Virginia Grove
Poet and Writing Instructor Virginia Grove
Dr. Andree Catalfamo
Dr. Andree Catalfamo
Scranton Alum Dawn Leas
Scranton Alum Dawn Leas

National Poetry Month

Shakespeare Panel April is National Poetry Month, and, as Fr. Pilarz has pointed out, today, April 29, is designated as the official occasion to celebrate. One way that you could celebrate is by visiting the Heritage Room on the 5th floor of the Weinberg Memorial Library. Enjoy the beautiful paintings by Trevor Southey, but also notice the poetry written on the wall beneath these images. Each quote is from a diffrerent poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins, a 19th century Jesuit poet. You can search The Columbia Granger’s Wold of Poetry to find out which poem each quote comes from. There is a Quick Search on the left-hand side of the page. Type “Gerard Manley Hopkins” in the search box under Poet and click on the Go button. Click on Hopkins, Gerard Manley (1844–89) for a list of his poems (my favorite is Pied Beauty) or click on [bio] to access some biographical information.

Scratches, a poem by William Bernhardt

At the end of Saturday’s Distinguished Author event, award recipient William Bernhardt read one of his poems, titled “Scratches,” to the audience.  The attendees loved it, and so many people wanted a copy that we asked Mr. Bernhardt if we could post it here on Infospot.  He agreed – so here, in its entirety, is “Scratches.”


This is how it begins;
scratches on signs, on blocks
on a white page. Then the
scratches start to dance.  They
recombinate, they collect sounds
they call your name.
Like so much in childhood
they are ciphers, full of secrets
but once you learn the dance
the secrets of the world
and more, are revealed.
You learn to read.

You learn:
manners from Goldilocks
curiosity from George
gluttony from Peter
the importance of nonsense from Alice.
You set sail with Jim Hawkins, raft with Huck
row with Mole.
You learn that love is eternal, from Catherine
but so is madness, says the first Mrs. Rochester.
Jeeves helps you laugh
poetry helps you cry
Atticus shows you how to do both, with courage.

Not only have the scratches shaped the world
they have shaped your world.
They have taught you how to see.
Now you need never be afraid.
Now you will never be alone.
In the darkest night
in the deepest solitude
the scratches will call to you.
You will open the covers.
They will reach out their arms and say
“Hey! You thought you were the only one?
You’re not.”

Copyright 2009 William Bernhardt