Purpose of World Poetry Day
This week’s episode of the Diverse Minds Podcast is all about World Poetry Day, I am joined by the award-winning Jess Green on the show to talk about the day and what it means.
Saturday 21 March was World Poetry Day. This is especially important at the moment as Poetry reaffirms our common humanity by revealing to us that individuals, everywhere in the world, share the same questions and feelings.
Poetry is the mainstay of oral tradition and, over centuries, can communicate the innermost values of diverse cultures.
In celebrating World Poetry Day, March 21, UNESCO recognises the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind.
The observance of World Poetry Day is meant to encourage a return to the oral tradition of poetry recitals, to promote the teaching of poetry, to restore a dialogue between poetry and the other arts such as theatre, dance, music and painting, and to support small publishers and create an attractive image of poetry in the media, so that the art of poetry will no longer be considered an outdated form of art, but one which enables society as a whole to regain and assert its identity.
About my guest Jess Green
Jess Green is an award-winning performance poet and scriptwriter. She has performed at Glastonbury, Latitude and Bestival and written two shows (both published by Burning Eye Books), Burning Books (2015) and A Self Help Guide To Being In Love With Jeremy Corbyn (2018) which received 5* at the Edinburgh Fringe and on their national tours.
The theatre adaptation of Burning Books toured in 2018 including a performance at NUT National Conference. Jess is a BBC Slam Champion, part of BBC Writers Academy 2019 and in 2020 is writing for Eastenders, Holby City and Casualty.
In today’s show, we talk about:
- How poetry has enabled and shaped Jess’ leadership journey. [03:0]
- What World Poetry Day means to her. [11:32]
- How workplaces can use poetry to help staff be more creative and support their mental health. [20:29]
- How to learn more about Jess and what she does [26:24]
- Listen to Jess share one of her poems [29:28]
Connect with my guest and discover more:
- How nice would it be if you could have creative writing and poetry workshops during people’s lunchtimes in workplaces?
- It’s just shocking that sitting in a secondary school classroom in Leicester, with around 30 kids and two of us are white, and yet, almost everything on the curriculum is by a white man. I just think that it’s completely bonkers.
- What’s really interesting is that over the past five to ten years, there has been a real rise in people buying poetry books and going to poetry events, and that is particularly young people.
- I think there’s something very special about reading a poem and the crystallisation of an idea, and the way that that can reach across to 300 years is really special.
- I think there’s something quite eerie about a World Poetry Day without any live poets.
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Remember to tune in to next week’s episode, where I’ll bring you more insights into mental health and inclusion.