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New York City Celebrates "Poem in Your Pocket Day"

April 27, 2017

Five winning #PoetweetNYC entries selected by a panel of judges led by First Lady Chirlane McCray were published in Metro New York

NEW YORK—On Thursday, April 27, New York City hosts the annual “Poem in Your Pocket Day,” a citywide celebration that encourages all New Yorkers to appreciate poetry and highlight the importance of literacy during National Poetry Month. Throughout the month of April, organizations have hosted poetry events across the five boroughs, and on April 27, all New Yorkers are encouraged to carry a poem in their pocket to share with friends, family and colleagues.

The City partnered with Metro New York to host the eighth annual “#PoetweetNYC” Twitter poetry contest from April 17 to April 21. @NYCulture and @NYCGov received hundreds of “#PoetweetNYC” submissions and winning entries were published in Metro New York on Poem in Your Pocket Day. The 2017 contest coincided with Immigrant Heritage Week, so participants were encouraged to submit poetweets that celebrate our city’s rich immigrant heritage.

"I am delighted that we have so many talented and prolific storytellers in NYC to celebrate on Poem in Your Pocket Day,” said First Lady Chirlane McCray. "Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 #PoetweetNYC Contest for capturing our city’s rich immigrant heritage and inspiring others through poetry – one word at a time.” 

This year, a panel of judges selected the winning poetweets, including:

  • Chirlane McCray, First Lady of New York City
  • Nisha Agarwal, Commissioner, NYC Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs
  • Tom Finkelpearl, Commissioner, NYC Department of Cultural Affairs
  • Jennifer Benka, Executive Director of the Academy of American Poets
  • Alice Quinn, Executive Director of the Poetry Society of America

2017 #PoetweetNYC Winners
Each time I thought
of leaving, some hand of love
or almost-love pulled me in.#PoetweetNYC

NYC--the city where
High speed silver caterpillars
Take you from earth to air

City that never sleeps
dreams of countless futures
spoken in thousand tongues,
understood in a single breath.


Patchwork of culture;
A fabric of immigrants.
The lining of our city;
Textile perfection in an imperfect world.

Stand clear of the closing doors
Good advice for a subway ride

As for the city itself, know this:
The doors remain open & wide

2017 Poem in Your Pocket Day Highlight Events
In addition to carrying a poem today, New Yorkers are encouraged to visit the cultural groups, parks, libraries, and others that are hosting literary events throughout the city. Highlights include:

Poem in Your Pocket Day Poetry Slam at the Bryant Park Reading Room
Between 40th and 42nd Streets & Fifth and Sixth Avenues, 10:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
The Reading Room invites student poets and poetry lovers to New York City's 15th Annual Poem in Your Pocket Day. This daylong celebration of poetry kicks off the Reading Room's 2017 literary series and is free and open to the public. Students from NYC's elementary, intermediate, and high schools will have the opportunity to read their latest poems during the open mic forum.

Poem in Your Pocket Day at Poets House
10 River Terrace, New York, NY 10282, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Discover poetry! Join young readers and writers along with special guests for an afternoon of readings and fun. Bring a poem of your choice to share or find one at Poets House. This community reading is a great way to tune your ears to new poets and old friends.

Put A Poem In Your Pocket Day at Poe Park
2640 Grand Concourse, Bronx, 2:30 p.m.4 p.m.
April is poetry month! On Poem in Your Pocket Day, bring a poem to share. If you do not have a poem, one will be provided. Poems may be original, classic or contemporary, funny, cute, or serious.

Poem in Your Pocket Day at Queens Public Library:

  • Central Library, Poetry Workshop, 89-11 Merrick Boulevard, Jamaica, NY 11432, 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
    Whether you consider yourself a poet or a novice, join us every Thursday in April for National Poetry Writing Month. In the supportive space of the workshop, bring your lived experience to life on the page.
  • Peninsula Library, Introduction to Poetry, 92-25 Rockaway Beach Boulevard, Rockaway Beach, NY 11693, 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m
    Celebrate National Poetry Month and join for an Introduction to Poetry. On April 27th the theme will be "21st Century Poets." A packet of the poems we discuss will be available ahead of time at the Reference Desk. Ask a librarian for details. 7:00 p.m. in the Meeting Room.

Poem in Your Pocket Day at Brooklyn Public Library

Poem in Your Pocket Day at New York Public Library

  • Allerton Library, Poetry Slam, 2740 Barnes Avenue, Bronx, NY, 10467, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
    Allerton's second annual Poetry Slam is your chance to shine! Learn about different kinds of poetry and how easy it is to let your creativity flow. Once we write poems we will share them with each other and display them for National Poetry month. Ages 7 and up.
  • Hunts Point Library, Kids Poetry Workshop and Share, 877 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY, 10459, 4 p.m.
    April is poetry month! Express yourself with poetry. Develop your creative writing potential in a supportive and fun environment. There will be a workshop about different poetry styles. Then there will be a writing and sharing session amongst family and friends.
  • Tompkins Square Park Library, The Minetta Review: A Reading of Poetry and Prose, 331 East 10th Street, New York, NY, 10009, 5 p.m. – 7 p.m.
    Join us for a night of poetry, prose, and artistic discussion at the Tompkins Square Public Library. Featuring Minetta Review contributors Saronik Bosu, Jared Gentile, Cheryl Gross, Lia Hagen, Kaylin Kaupish, Nina Kossman, Sharisse Zeroonian.

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