World Poetry Day – History | Significance | Themes | Quotes: World Poetry Day is celebrated annually on March 21st. It was established by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) in 1999 to promote the reading, writing, and appreciation of poetry.
World Poetry Day History
World Poetry Day was established by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) in 1999. The day is celebrated annually on March 21st, with the aim of promoting the reading, writing, and appreciation of poetry.
The idea of a day dedicated to poetry can be traced back to the 1930’s when the poet Robert Frost suggested holding a poetry reading on the first day of spring. Over time, different countries began to celebrate their own National Poetry Days, and in 1999 UNESCO declared March 21st as World Poetry Day, to celebrate poetry across the world.
The establishment of World Poetry Day was part of UNESCO’s broader efforts to promote cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue. The organization recognized the power of poetry to bring people together and to promote understanding and tolerance across different cultures and languages.
World Poetry Day Significance
The day celebrates the unique ability of poetry to capture emotions, convey complex ideas, and inspire people to see the world in new ways. Poetry is an art form that has been used throughout history to express human emotions, experiences, and perspectives.
World Poetry Day aims to promote cultural diversity, promote the linguistic diversity of poetry, and to give endangered languages the opportunity to be heard. The day also encourages people to explore different forms of poetry from around the world and to appreciate the role that poetry plays in enriching our lives.
On World Poetry Day, various events are organized around the world, including poetry readings, competitions, and festivals. These events provide opportunities for poets to share their work, for readers to discover new poets and styles, and for people to celebrate the beauty and power of poetry.
World Poetry Day Themes
There is typically no specific theme for World Poetry Day, but each year the day serves as an opportunity to celebrate the diverse voices and traditions of poetry around the world. Some organizations or individuals may choose to focus on a specific theme or issue related to poetry on that day, such as the role of poetry in social justice movements or the importance of poetry in education.
Here are some of the themes that have been highlighted in previous World Poetry Day celebrations:
2022 – No specific theme announced yet
2021 – “New Voices” – celebrating and promoting young and emerging poets from around the world.
2020 – “Connecting Voices” – promoting the importance of poetry as a means of expression and communication across languages, cultures and generations.
2019 – “Nature for Inspiration” – exploring the connection between poetry and the natural world.
2018 – “Voices of the Invisible” – highlighting the role of poetry in giving voice to marginalized and oppressed communities.
2017 – “Freedom, Creativity and Expression” – focusing on the role of poetry in promoting freedom of expression and creativity.
2016 – “An Open Invitation to Poetry” – encouraging people around the world to read, write and share poetry in their own languages.
2015 – “Inclusive Poetic Expression” – emphasizing the importance of making poetry accessible to all, including people with disabilities and those living in marginalized communities.
2014 – “Mind, Body, and Spirit” – exploring the connection between poetry and the human experience.
These themes reflect the diverse range of perspectives and themes found in poetry and aim to promote the universal appeal of this art form.
World Poetry Day Quotes
Here are some inspiring quotes about poetry in honor of World Poetry Day:
“Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility.” – William Wordsworth
“Poetry is the rhythmical creation of beauty in words.” – Edgar Allan Poe
“Poetry is when an emotion has found its thought and the thought has found words.” – Robert Frost
“Poetry is the language in which man explores his own amazement.” – Christopher Fry
“Poetry is the journal of a sea animal living on land, wanting to fly in the air.” – Carl Sandburg
“Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality.” – T.S. Eliot
“Poetry is the opening and closing of a door, leaving those who look through to guess about what is seen during a moment.” – Carl Sandburg
“Poetry is an echo, asking a shadow to dance.” – Carl Sandburg
“Poetry is the art of creating imaginary gardens with real toads.” – Marianne Moore
These quotes show the power and beauty of poetry, and the different ways that poets have expressed their thoughts and feelings through this art form.