Consider today’s post as an All-Points Literary Advisory, with a splash of fashion advise. It’s National Poem in Your Pocket Day, and official organizational literature indicates that the general public should be on the alert for clustered groups of troubadours, bards, and average citizens assembled for readings in parks, libraries, schools, workplaces, and bookstores. I’d hate to think of any of my readers turning up with empty pockets should an impromptu Unfolding break out at your place of business.
I realize that perhaps I’ve failed to get this out to you in time for much advance planning. Perhaps you’re reading this right now at your desk, poemless, sans pockets even, and panicking ever so slightly as you see a small gathering forming at the water cooler. Relax. Let’s work through this together. If you’re fortunate enough to have a favorite poet, go online and print off a poem. If you have no poetry preferences, just google a poet—any one will do: use a name you remember from freshman comp, go back mentally to high school if you must. Frost. Dickinson. Pound. Just pick one, and print off something vaguely pocket sized—don’t worry if you don’t have an actual pocket, I’m sure a purse, wallet, or shoe will do, in the spirit of the thing.
As for me, I’m a William Carlos Williams enthusiast, but a quick online check doesn’t summon my favorite of his works, The Flower, but no matter—that’s a little larger-than-pocket sized anyway. Today I’ll go with:
This Is Just To Say
I have eaten
that were in
you were probably
they were delicious
and so cold
--William Carlos Williams
And, see, just like that, I’m prepared. I’ll have Williams at the ready to brandish at will should the need arise. You should get prepared, too--I won’t keep you. And just in case you’re afraid of going through all the trouble of arming yourself with literature only to suffer the disappointment of not stumbling upon a Great Unfolding—fear not. You already have! Let’s see what you’ve got…