Poem in Your Pocket Day

April is National Poetry Month, and today is Poem in Your Pocket Day. To celebrate, I gave out poems today at the YMCA on behalf of the Portage County Literacy Council (I’m a volunteer tutor). The poems were chosen by librarians at UWSP and cleverly put together by students. I also printed out some children’s poems by Kenn Nesbitt.

poem in your pocket

When I heard about the opportunity to give out poems for Poem in Your Pocket Day, I thought, Yes! That is something I want to do! I volunteered and got all the stuff. This morning, I thought, Oh no! I have to talk to strangers. I have to put myself out there. As a shy introvert, this is very uncomfortable for me.

As people walked into the Y, they saw me and saw that I was offering something. They avoided eye contact with me. They tried to hurry past.

I said, “Can I offer you a poem?”

They stopped and looked at me funny. “A what?”

“A poem,” I said, holding out a small scroll of paper tied with a colorful ribbon. “It is Poem in Your Pocket Day. Would you like a poem?”

Their eyes shined with surprise and delight. “Yes!”

Delight. People were delighted to get a poem. It was fun! I’m glad I volunteered to share poetry today. If you would like to share a poem with a loved one, an acquaintance or a stranger today, the following links will give you some poems to choose from.

Kenn Nesbitt’s Poetry4kids.com

The Writer’s Almanac, offering a poem a day.

I’ll end this blog by sharing one of my own poems. You are welcome to print and read and share this poem with others. You are not welcome to sell or do anything with my poem to make money. I haven’t made any money off this poem, so it would be really unfair if you did.

Boys Pee on the Floor
by Elizabeth Caulfield Felt

I am a wife
I am a mother of boys
I should not have been surprised
I have a father
I have two brothers

My husband taught my first sonNo matter how you wiggle and dance
the last drops always lands in your pants.”
            (or on the floor.)

I listened
I laughed
I taught my boys to pee standing up
(because boys pee standing up)

My first son was five
when I discovered:
At night
           or first pee of the day
he stands to pee (as he was taught)
but he does not turn on the bathroom light.

Second son was only two
too tall for a stool
too short without
So, a stool
He's just learning, so we
out pours the stream over the toilet bowl
          the right of the upright seat
          against the wall

Married ten years I
brush my teeth
while my husband peesOops,” says he, “split stream.”
I turn and see he
I see him 
see me
see him
He cleans the pee

I wonder
Would he clean the pee if I didn't see?
If you are female and read this,
you may wonder too
If you are male,
you know
           boys pee on the floor

4 thoughts on “Poem in Your Pocket Day

  1. Hi Elizabeth!

    The poem in my pocket:

    ‘If I can stop one heart from breaking, I shall not live in vain. If I can ease one life the aching, Or cool one pain, Or help one fainting robin Unto his nest again, I shall not live in vain.’

    Emily Dickinson

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