April is National Poetry Month. You can read more about it here at the website of The Academy of American Poets, but what you need to know, basically, is that it is a month-long, national celebration of poetry established by the Academy of American Poets, and it’s been around since 1996.
Their description: “The concept is to widen the attention of individuals and the media—to the art of poetry, to living poets, to our complex poetic heritage, and to poetry books and journals of wide aesthetic range and concern. We hope to increase the visibility and availability of poetry in popular culture while acknowledging and celebrating poetry’s ability to sustain itself in the many places where it is practiced and appreciated.”
Jesse Patrick Ferguson is a poet who currently resides in Sydney, Cape Breton, where he also performs folk music on various instruments. In fall 2009 Freehand Books published his first full-length book, Harmonics. His second book, Dirty Semiotics, which consists entirely of visual poetry, was released in November 2011 by Broken Jaw Press.
He’s kindly sharing one of his poems with us. Enjoy it – and leave a comment if you wish! You can contact Jesse at firstname.lastname@example.org . He will also be teaching a poetry class and a fiction-writing class at CBU this June and July – contact him for more info!(I was lucky enough to take a one-day poetry workshop taught by Jesse and came away from it super inspired, so if I were you, I’d look into these classes.)
Our politician is thumping
his staunch fist. Now he pummels the air
to prove his determination.
The time for vacillation is past,
he booms. We must act now to stop
the warming of our planet.
The destruction of our planet,
he expounds, ignoring the thumping
blue vein at his temple, must stop.
We must save our lucrative air;
we must mobilize before it’s past
saving. This party’s determination
is to draft a determination
somehow regarding our planet
and its costly plight. In the past,
there’s been much futile tub-thumping,
politic cud chewing and hot air
expelled in the attempt to stop
pollution, but it didn’t stop.
No, friends, past determinations
weren’t determined enough. That’s why our air
cancers the skin of the planet;
that’s why ancient trees are thumping
the rainforest floor in numbers past
sustainability. In the past,
your corrupt leaders refused to stop
stuffing their pockets, to stop thumping
their pinstriped backs. A determination
to determine the fate of a planet
won’t just appear out of thin air—
especially since they don’t make thin air
anymore. We must boldly blaze past
the infighting that has placed our planet
in jeopardy; today we must stop
it all with determinations
both quick and cheap. At this, his thumping
fist receives a thumping answer, the air
churned with a determination past
belief: non-stop clapping for the planet.
Jesse Patrick Ferguson,