Poetry Friday

Poetry Friday: The Gift Of Poetry In A Virtual Classroom

Aug 21, 2020

High School English teacher Terry Wilson returns for this week’s Poetry Friday segment. She’s talked to us before about the ‘Gift Poems’ she reads to her students every day before class begins. There is no assignment involved. She just wants to give them something thoughtful and powerful. It’s a beloved ritual Wilson’s been doing for decades. This year, with classes online and new students who don’t yet know the tradition of the ‘Gift Poem’, Wilson wondered if the power of poetry would transcend the Zoom classroom. We are happy to report that the answer is a resounding, ‘yes!’ Here is Terry Wilson with her first ‘Gift Poem’ of the 2020-2021 school year, Charles Bukowski’s The Laughing Heart. 

Poetry Friday: The Noir Edition

Jul 17, 2020
Jesse Sensibar

Flagstaff-based poet and tow truck driver Jesse Sensibar has a new book of poetry out. It’s an updated edition of his previously released 2018 collection, Blood in the Asphalt: Prayers from the Highway. The Noir Edition has new essays, poems and photographs. Sensibar is fascinated with roadside shrines, which he sees a lot of while he’s out working on Arizona roadways. He often stops at the sites to write. In this week’s installment of Poetry Friday, Jesse Sensibar talks about the difficulties of being a poet in the world right now, and he reads from his new collection of work.

Arizona State Parks

In this week’s installment of Poetry Friday, we hear again from Rob Bettaso, a listener and poet  in the White Mountains. For the last 2 years, Rob has written a poem for KNAU at the turn of every season. Today, he brings us his summer poem called Everything Worth Knowing Comes from Nature. The inspiration came from watching a group of Scrub Jays hassling a young Oriole in his front yard. Rob draws parallels between their behavior and the behavior of humans.

Poetry Friday: Wand Of Fire

Jun 26, 2020
Elias Butler

This week’s Poetry Friday segment speaks to the power of nature. Wand of Fire is an original poem by KNAU listener Jean Toner. She does a lot of hiking on the Colorado Plateau and has been witness to many beautiful and magical events. Today, Jean retells the story of seeing a giant bolt of lightning come out of nowhere to hit a lone tree. It was a powerful experience, reminding her to stay present in the moment so as not to miss something remarkable. 

Austin Davis

The ongoing pandemic is taking a toll on our mental health. Many recent studies show anxiety and depression on the rise in the U.S. - and across the world - due to concerns about the virus and its ripple effect on our daily lives. For some people with preexisting mental health issues, the isolation and uncertainty of the pandemic can be especially stressful. Arizona poet Austin Davis knows that. He’s dealt with OCD – obsessive compulsive disorder - most of his life, and has had some difficult days the last few months. In this week’s Poetry Friday segment, Austin talks about the mental health benefits of writing, and shares a poem from his new collection, Celestial Night Light.