Poetry: Spread the Word and 30 Poets 30 Days — Happy National Poetry Month!

April is National Poetry Month, and my brother Greg has a couple of things going on. Here’s his summary of the Poetry: Spread the Word Kickstarter project:

If Poetry: Spread the Word is funded, over the course of the next year (roughly May, 2011 through April, 2012), I will put 100 original poems up on my blog and out into the world for free and do 40 school visits (via Skype or, if it works out, in person) at no cost to the schools. I’ll also create a collection, described in more detail below, that will celebrate and document the visits and the poetry.

By supporting this project, each of you can become a patron of the arts. You’ll help get poetry into classrooms, take the fundraising and organizational burden off teachers and parents, and enable me to have time to write and publish free poetry on my blog.

At the same time, I hope I can make “doing good” be even more rewarding for you by offering something of value in exchange for your support. I love win-win-win situations, and I hope that’s what has been created here.

Indeed!  If pledge $10 or more, you get a PDF of the Poetry: Spread the Word collection, and it only gets better from there: signed poems, postcards with poetry, choosing the topic for a poem, sponsoring a class visit, or even a custom poem!  More details here, along with a spiffy video with more about why he’s doing the project.

Meanwhile, on his blog Gottabook, Greg’s presenting the third installment of 30 Poets 30 Days.  The idea’s simple: a different poet each day for the entire month — and this year, there will be some bonus poems as well.  The legendary Douglas Florian kicks it off today with “April is the Coolest Month“, and a lot of the biggest names in children’s poetry are involved … here’s the list:

Arnold Adoff, Jaime Adoff, Francisco X. Alarcón, Kathi Appelt, Jorge Argueta, Brod Bagert, Carmen Bernier-Grand, Calef Brown, Joseph Bruchac, James Carter, Kurt Cyrus, Graham Denton, Rebecca Kai Dotlich, Douglas Florian, Kristine O’Connell George, Charles Ghigna, Joan Bransfield Graham, Nikki Grimes, Avis Harley, David L. Harrison, Alan Katz, Bobbi Katz, Julie Larios, J. Patrick Lewis, George Ella Lyon, Elaine Magliaro, Heidi Mordhorst, Kenn Nesbitt, Linda Sue Park, Ann Whitford Paul, Greg Pincus, Laura Purdie Salas, Liz Garton Scanlon, Joyce Sidman, Marilyn Singer, Susan Marie Swanson, Charles Waters, April Halprin Wayland, Carole Boston Weatherford, Janet Wong, Jane Yolen, Tracie Vaughn Zimmer …

Can I just say “wow”?  And kudos to Mary Petersen for a great logo, continuing the 30 Poets 30 Days tradition.

So check out 30 Poets 30 Days — and spread the word.

Happy National Poetry Month!