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"You can cut all the flowers, but you cannot keep spring from coming." - Pablo Neruda

Updated: Apr 19, 2022

Amidst the rubble of our another-round-of-Covid, war in Ukraine, inflation-burdened times, life still seeks life. National Poetry Month sneaks in and we find ourselves in the middle of April, wading through grey and cold rain (snow today, really?!) to those moments of pure sunlight that renew us to our very roots.

I love the writing challenges that are available during April. All of the celebrations of poetry and poets. But of course, poetry is with us all year round. And I've thought many times of how we balance creation with obligation, how we feel pushed to write sometimes from external forces rather than our internal drive. Sometimes a little push gets you out of a rut. Sometimes it kills the beauty that might grow on its own. Ultimately, your writing habits have to be your own. Dive into the challenges that inspire you. Some months are for watching, for thinking, for planning. Let that feed you also.

So it has been for me this month. Some writing that I'm excited to tidy-up and release into the universe. But mostly planning for a whole lot of opportunities this year. And a lot of getting geared up for the next two weeks!

Tomorrow is April 19th (4/19) and one of my favorite days of the year! Not only do I live in area code 419, but it means our annual Ode to the Zipcode celebration. This year, like the past couple of years, we'll be online, event streamed through Facebook Live at 7pm EST. But I'm honored to be the emcee this year and so incredibly excited to share the winning poems with everyone. This event draws out the poetry in every corner of our area, celebrates and sometimes laments our neighborhoods, and every year gives us a chance to pay attention to the character of Northwest Ohio. I hope you listen in to learn a bit about why Zip Codes Matter and join us in congratulating our winners.

Then on Saturday, April 23rd, the area's first Northwest Ohio Teen Book Festival will be hosted at Rossford High School. A full-day FREE event with numerous sessions, books and authors everywhere, and even a mini-poetry slam... truly a fantastic celebration of literary arts! Get your tickets at Eventbrite.

On Tuesday, April 26th, an open mic poetry reading at King Road Library. For the Love of Poetry starts at 5:30pm and is open to any and all. We'll have spots to read 3 minutes of your favorite poetry, famous poems that moved you or something you penned and are proud of. Bring it! This is our chance to share the poems we love. It's also our introduction to a new series of monthly events called WritersShop. Writing workshops hosted at the TLCPL branches, each led by a different writer and each with a different focus. We'll be unveiling our schedule and plans for 2022.

And to begin May, our first in a series of Ekphrastic Writing Workshops will start at Sofia Quintero on May 3rd at 6pm. In this series, we'll have open writing workshops in artistic spaces and studios around Lucas County. Join us and let the inspiration move you!

And this is really just the beginning... the roots threading out, the stem just emerging, incredible writing opportunities blossoming everywhere!

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