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'Carry the Light' Excerpt: Poetry Lesson

After attending a series of poetry readings, this visual artist decided to write one of her own. The poem appears in "Carry the Light," an anthology of stories, poems and essays that were submitted for the county fair's literary contest.

Editor's Note: For the first time in the history of the San Mateo County Fair, a 300-page anthology has been published that includes more than 100 stories, poems and essays from writers who submitted award-winning work for the fair's literary contest. The idea was the brainchild of Bardi Rosman Koodrin, a San Bruno resident who runs the fair's literary contest, and the anthology, titled "Carry the Light," features work from many Peninsula writers.

Marian Yap was inspired to write this poem after attending a series of poetry readings in Pacifica organized by a friend. 

From p. 57, "Poetry Lesson"

My poetry lesson is not about learning how to write poetry

My poetry lesson is how to listen to poetry

 

And the poetry that I hear teaches me not only about the names of

birds and names of places where poets come from and where they

have been but of their humor, resilience and their desire to share their

gift so freely

 

I am learning about those who have suffered great loss and struggled

with their sadness, and about the small joys that poets record so

eloquently, and how poets share intimate pieces of their lives

 

My poetry lesson teaches me that the poet wants not much more

than for the listener to listen and the reader to read

 

My poetry lesson is not about learning how to write poetry

Excerpted from "Carry the Light" with the permission of Sand Hill Review Press, the publisher. The book is available for purchase for $12 on Amazon.com

Marian Yap, a Pacifica resident, is a visual artist who writes Haiku poetry. Check out her work at www.marianyap.com.

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