Colorado Poets Center E-Words Issue #13

Poetry House Calls

The Colorado Poet also noticed that Jim Ciletti participates in several different ways to make poetry public. One of these ways is the personal “house call”. We reprint his blog-account here:

“LAST NIGHT, at seven last night, Mary and I went to a friend's home for my first Poetry House Call. Charlie and Robin had invited four couples and spread out appetizers and desserts. I started with a brief reading of my Words as Mirrors piece, about how poetry let's us look into our heart the way x-ray shows us our bones. Then guests shared some of their favorite poems by, of course, Frost, Poe, Stevenson, Mansfield, Sato, etc. I shared some of mine, shared my journal with notes, news clippings, power prompts (words or phrases cut from magazines and pasted to a page to use as a writing prompt) -- to encourage the guests to start journaling, putting down memoirs for their children and grandchildren, and perhaps, working at a poem or two.

Everyone became engaged, telling stories about writing poems in high school and summer camp, the guest who had read Mansfield's "down to the sea again" had been a sailor -- the guest who had read Poe's "Bells" had had a thrilling experience of the poem with a high school teacher. The point: everyone had a significant connection with poetry.

The evening was like a dream come true. A mini-salon with everyone invested in their experience and love for poetry. And, we all have new information about one another that enriches our friendships.

WE CLOSED with me passing around a copy of my book of poems, SUNFIRE, for each guest to sign and annotate and we gave this book to our hosts, Charlie and Robin.

Poetry House Calls: Fellow poets, try it, you'll like it. Readers: invite a poet for a poetry house call. You'll love it.” (Jim Ciletti)