It’s National Poetry Month!

As a bit of a poet nerd (I am slowly working toward an MFA degree), I enjoyed spending April exploring the poetry of other countries – from India where I have been traveling most of the month, but also from countries I’ve been to recently.

It is interesting to see familiar themes from American and British poetry also being explored all around in the world in many different cultures and languages.

Here are some of my new discoveries:

Ocean Oneness by Sri Aurobindo (India)

I grew up by the beach, so the ocean is as familiar to me as home. Even beaches half way around the world give me that comfortable, back-where-I-belong feeling. I have written countless pieces on the ocean, and I love to read descriptions from other writers – such as this one from India.

Quiet Night Thought by Li Bai (China)

This poem talks of homesickness, which is a chronic state for every traveler, on some level, even if it is often overshadowed by our need for adventure. And the more places I spend long periods of time in, the more places I feel homesick for. I especially love that this poem comes from China, the first country I lived in when I left America, because it’s a place that will always hold a lot of nostalgia and meaning for me.

The Style of the Times by Jónas Hallgrímsson (Iceland)

I am drawn to the story behind this poem – I love old legends and love stories, and these short lines manage to encompass both.

Our Old House by Saif Al Rahbi (Oman)

This is one of my new favorite poets – I just love the way he uses language. My favorite poems usually explore a topic I find relatable or curious, but my favorite poets can write about anything and their words still pull me in.

I believe travel is always enriched by an interest in the arts or creativity.

I love to be overwhelmed by how different people and places around the world can be. I crave new experiences as often as possible! But I also love to find the universal.

Poetry (or painting, or dance, or music) is definitely universally created and celebrated. There is something so satisfying about discovering someone from a different culture or era who creates work similar to yours in style or theme.

My fellow poet nerds – who is your favorite writer or what is your favorite piece from a country not your own?