“The people fancy they hate poetry, and they are all poets and mystics.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

April is national poetry month — and in honor of poets past and present, we are calling upon all St. John’s University students to enter our first annual library-sponsored poetry challenge.

Assuming Emerson is correct and we are all indeed poets, April’s poetry challenge is to write a poem about an item in today’s news — depending upon when you read this — the challenge changes every day.

You might use a front page story, human interest, the weather section, “cute babies,” comics, obituaries, arts & leisure — whatever strikes your interest — international, national or local. Based on your chosen “news” item, the challenge is to create a poem inspired by what you read/heard/saw.

Don’t limit yourself to traditional print news sources — poets and mystics never do!! — so consider blogs, videos, tweets, Flickr photos, google images, etc.

Poems, like people, come in many shapes and sizes — so write your poetry in whatever format best suits you and your subject.

And don’t forget — at the end of your poem, provide a citation (or link) to the original, inspirational article or feature.

We’ve created the st. john’s university libraries student poety blog with the hopes that it become an interactive forum for StJ student poets as well as a platform for all StJ community members to share ideas, thoughts, and resources about poetry.

To submit your poem — or poems — to the blog, follow the instructions on the st. john’s university libraries student poetry “Contribute” page.

Please join us to read your poetry — and listen to one another’s — on April 28th during common hour in the library, St. Augustine Hall, Room 307.

For further information, visit the poetry blog or contact Caroline Fuchs at fuchsc@stjohns.edu or Kathryn Shaughessy at shaughnk@stjohns.edu

Let us know you’re coming — we’ll save you a seat!