Poem in Your Pocket Day

The Academy of American Poets declares today, April 18th, national Poem in Your Pocket Day! Today, choose a poem (or maybe a song) and carry it with you all day long. More importantly, share it with others throughout your day. You can share your chosen poem on Twitter with the hashtag #pocketpoem. Today, our pocket poem, “Oyster,” is from Gary Whitehead’s new collection of poems A Glossary of Chickens.


Oyster I am and of course am not,
crammed betimes abed,
awake now and filter the world!

Here, in this wet
section, sucking away unread,
slaked where silt has quarreled

with silt, the as-yet
with now instead
of then, what has it availed

to live the clam, all shut
and somewhat dead,
all abductor-muscled,

flexed for no one but
yourself in your unlit head?
O, open! Be befooled,

three-chambered heart
full of colorless blood,
sharp shell unhandselled.

Better to be rent apart,
all jiggly and liberated,
than to fret an irk until it’s pearled.

Today, choose a poem, keep it in your pocket, and have it on hand to share with friends throughout your day. Don’t forget that the month of April is National Poetry Month. Celebrate in poem!