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Haiku contest icon DC with cherry blossoms

Haiku Contest Winners!

Thank you to all who participated

To celebrate National Poetry Month here at the Chevy Chase library, we held a Haiku contest for poets of all ages! 

Kang_The White Book_Front Cover

Genre-Bending!

Books that defy labels

What makes a novel? A poetry collection? A memoir?  The following books defy classification. They dare librarians to place them in fiction rather than poetry, or with the biographies instead of the short stories. Regardless of where we put them on the shelf, these books are interesting and dynamic and they will test the limits of your imagination. 

Homie

My Reentry to Poetry

This year I set out to read genres that I’m not drawn to. The list includes mysteries, horror, and poetry. My introduction to poetry was in grade school, and I was not impressed; I just couldn’t understand the deeper meaning behind the metaphors, and it was not enjoyable. Now, far removed from grade school I’m setting out to re-discover the genre.

Alone Together by Jennifer Haupt

The Pandemic on Paper

Writings about the COVID-19 pandemic and how we live now

Many of us have turned to artistic endeavors throughout the pandemic to fill some free time, writers included.

When My Brother Was an Aztec by Natalie Diaz

Indigenous Voices in Verse

Contemplating the Native American experience through poetry

Nothing quite compares to the poetic rendering of the experience of indigenous people. Tribal history, spirituality, internal grappling with identity, the juxtaposition of American and Native cultures and the responsibility and anguish of survival – all of these come together gorgeously in lyric form and give a holistic yet personal picture of Native American life.  

Bastards of the Reagan Era by Reginald Dwayne Betts

Poetic Perspectives on Prison

Lives and Literature Behind Bars

The United States has the highest rate of incarceration in the world, making prison culture a topic of constant political and social relevance in our country. The subject of incarceration is also a compelling source of inspiration for many poets. The following recommended books are written by formerly incarcerated artists or writers inspired by the experience of prison.

The Collected Poems of E. Ethelbert Miller

Washington's Got Talent

Books of Poetry by Local Writers

There is no question that Washington, D.C. is a political and cultural capital. The city also happens to be a hub for the written word, being the home of many writers and literary events and festivals.   In the spirit of celebrating the literary heritage of D.C., here is a list of books of poetry available at DC Public Library written by local authors.  

The Big Smoke by Adrian Matejka

Book-length Poems for the Poetically Skeptic

Recommendations for Readers Who Crave a Story

For those who don’t read poetry, a major hang-up can be the fact that many collections lack a plot. Readers who want a story may shy away from the genre, for fear of being bored or distracted by abstract verse. Fortunately, the book-length poem offers a solution where readers can escape into an exciting tale all while enjoying the sparse but potent language of poetry. The below books have the potential to convert even the most devout lovers of novels and memoir.  

The Carrying by Ada Limon

Year End Reads

As the official winter season gets closer, the weather slows things down and instills a heaviness that really makes us feel ourselves in our bodies. When we are not as frenetic, books are a great companion to the new (but cyclical) rhythm. It’s a vista from which to take stock, particularly with a new year on the horizon line. The books below offer characters or writers who are speaking to a centeredness, steadiness, or timeliness.

A Year in Rock Creek Park

DC's Wild, Wondrous Heart

Ecological, Historical & Poetic Explorations of Rock Creek Park

When many people think of our nation's capital, they focus on its political life. Yet residents here know our city environment encompasses much more than federal politics. At its heart lies my favorite area, Rock Creek Park. Over double the size of Central Park, it includes forests, streams, hills, fields, recreational and historical sites. Here residents and tourists can escape from urban stress, slow down, engage in recreation, and commune with nature.

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