With gift-giving holidays around the corner what should you buy for your family member or friend that loves poetry? Here is the Viewless Wings Top 9 gift ideas for a poetry lover to get you started, whether it’s a love of reading poetry, writing poetry or both.
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9. Sylvia Plath
You can’t go wrong sharing the poetry of Sylvia Plath. Her seering images will linger with your poetry-loving reader.
Out of the ash
I rise with my red hair
And I eat men like air.
– from Lady Lazarus by Sylvia Plath
8. A Master Class of Poetry – Billy Collins
For your poet consider gifting a one-year subscription to Master Class. There are several wonderful classes by poets and authors, including Billy Collins (details), Margaret Atwood, and more.
7. CalArts “Sharpened Visions: A Poetry Workshop” through Coursera
A free option for your beginner poet is the wonderful online workshop offered through Coursera by CalArts Assistant Professor and poet Douglas Kearney. Highly recommended. coursera.org/learn/poetry-workshop
6. Get started writing poetry with Stephen Fry
Comedian, actor and author Stephen Fry wrote a wonderful book that introduces the beginning poet to poetic styles with numerous prompts and exercises, all wrapped in Fry’s witty style. From the sleeve: “Stephen Fry believes that if one can speak and read English, one can write poetry. In The Ode Less Travelled, he invites readers to discover the delights of writing poetry for pleasure and provides the tools and confidence to get started.”
5. Stuff stockings with modern poets
Consider sharing the gift of poetry from one of these 21st century poets (each has been featured on The Viewless Wings Poetry Podcast).
4. For the advance poet
For an experienced poet there is always more to learn. Robert Pinsky’s book “The Sounds of Poetry” is an excellent gift. This book dives deep below the surface to break down how poetry works.
3. Notebooks, notebooks, notebooks
Poets are writers, and writers write, so they’ll always need something to write on. You can’t go wrong with a Moleskine journal, with their soft covers and quality paper. They scream out “create something and write on me!”
2. Pens and Pencils, Pencils and Pens
Yes we all have smartphones and computers but most writers still start the old fashioned way – on paper. So complement your Moleskine notebook with quality pens and pencils. Here are a couple of suggestions.
1. Lean back and enjoy “Paterson” starring Adam Driver
For the poet who writes but hasn’t yet shared their poetry with the world gift a view of the Adam Driver movie “Paterson”, about a transit worker by day, poet by night. The film beautifully captures the writing process and vulnerability of sharing poetry.
Share your suggestions for the best gifts for poets in the comments!