Poem in Your Pocket Day was initiated in April 2002 by the Office of the Mayor in New York City, in partnership with the city’s Departments of Cultural Affairs and Education. In 2008, the Academy of American Poets took the initiative to all fifty United States, encouraging individuals around the country to participate. In 2016, the League of Canadian Poets extended Poem in Your Pocket Day to Canada.
Poem in Your Pocket Day takes place every year on a day in National Poetry Month. Poem in Your Pocket Day 2022 is today, April 29.
To celebrate, share one of these poems written by grade 6/7 students at Britannia Elementary, during youthLEADarts programming recently.
By: Serenity, Nevaeh, Kichiri and Erin
I worry the paddle won’t push me forward
The songs of my ancestors play on rewind
My heart throbs like a drum
I’m not strong enough to keep my culture alive
I am grieving
Are they really gone?
Did raven really steal the sun?
My pain holds me in a corner
I see my elders dancing in the fire
Fading slowly with time
I am stuck in guilt and regret
The sun finally sets
Leaving us in total darkness
A wave crashes on the shore
But, the sun will rise again
The raven shows his mercy
I am the future, not the past
I am fabric, woven with steel
I am an artist who paints the sunrise
Progress, not perfection
Firm Fist, not Pliable Palms
By: Chantal, Nova, Danira, Karalyn
I am stripped of motivation
The fence is stranding me
I am exhausted
I can’t get up
I understand it takes time
I am afraid of the prejudice against me
I can’t stand for this.
No! We WON’T stand for this
We will not be discriminated
We will not accept judgment
We need freedom
We will break this cycle
We are eager to leave this room of regret
Our paddle propels us forward
We will fight warriors for equality
We are the puppeteers, not the puppets
Firm fist, not pliable palms
WE ARE MOTIVATED!