Thu | May 23, 2019

Jamaica to officially proclaim World Poetry Day on March 21

Published:Sunday | March 18, 2018 | 12:51 AM

The National Library of Jamaica is organising the celebration of World Poetry Day, Jamaica on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 at The Knutsford Court Hotel.

Through the efforts of the Poet Laureate of Jamaica programme, Sir Patrick Linton Allen officially declared a national poetry day celebration under the broader umbrella of World Poetry Day coordinated by UNESCO.

Promotion and popularisation of poetry is the new thrust area of the National Library of Jamaica, which will become a mainstay of the NLJ’s projects in 2018 and beyond.

The day’s activities will begin with an International Poetry Reading segment where members from the diplomatic corps and international community will share in the reading of celebrated works of world poetry commencing at 9:30 a.m.

The official opening of the event will be at 10:30 a.m. In addition to this event, schools across the island have been invited to participate by reciting a poem of their own choosing during their morning devotions.

Teachers and students are invited to share images and videos on social using the hashtag #WORLDPOETRYDAYJAMAICA.

This World Poetry Day, Jamaica celebration is free to the public and the NLJ is encouraging like-minded individuals, students and lovers of poetry to participate in this historic event.

The UNESCO World Poetry Day was conceived as a way to recognise the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind; promote the reading, writing, and teaching of poetry; and to give fresh recognition and impetus to national, regional, and international poetry movements.

Poet Laureate of Jamaica, Lorna Goodison fresh will award the winner of the Poet Laureate of Jamaica and Helen Zell: Young Writers Prize for Poetry, a major poetry prize of US $1,000.

This cash prize is funded by the Helen Zell Writer’s Program at the University of Michigan to recognise talented young Jamaicans with an interest in pursuing a career in poetry.

The competition received over 340 submissions from young Jamaican living at home and abroad with each applicant submitting a portfolio of between three to six poems (3-6) poems.

The shortlisted candidates for the Helen Zell: Young Writer’s Prize for Poetry are: Jovanté Anderson, Khadijah Chin, Lauren Delapenha, Britney Gabbidon.

The event is being organised in partnership with Book Industry Association of Jamaica; Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Ministry of Education; Youth and Information; Jamaica Library Service; Jamaica National Commissions for UNESCO and Osmosis Caribbean.

The event is open to public.