Poetry in the Garden Goes Virtual for National Poetry Month

Written by Clarity Amrein, Library Customer Advisor, St. Bernard Branch, Lea Shull, Library Customer Advisor, Downtown Main Library, and Adam Vorobok, Reference Librarian, Downtown Main Library 

April is National Poetry Month and the Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library has plenty of amazing virtual events celebrating wordplay, rhymes, and community. To challenge ourselves, we decided to write about our upcoming events using poetic forms and styles. 

The Roots of Poetry in the Garden 

Seeds of appealing images were grown 

By Robert Hudzik* at the library. 

From the Tree were the rustic poems he sown 

In a book as rich as a mulberry. 

He gathered great minds, all loud and vocal, 

Giving space for wordplay from the margin. 

Soon became an event for the local 

We call it Poetry from the Garden. 

For twenty-three years, poets have spoken, 

Meeting new friends and making connections. 

Even in lockdown, our will’s unbroken 

Cause we can Zoom virtual reflections. 

For the library is the place to be 

For art and poetry, just wait and see!
*Robert Hudzik was a former CHPL staff member who created the annual Poetry in the Garden event.  


The First Zoom Event with the Greater Cincinnati Writers League (in the style of e.e. cummings

winter snow to rain flakes before May 

(April 13 a moonless Tuesday evening) 

3 from the Writers League will play 

(7 p.m. through a Zoom screening) 

welcome Joanne Greenway (president of the league) 

from social work to poetry, let her voice ring 

along with Mike Olson (whose words will intrigue) 

new poems or old, what will he bring? 

Then there is Karen George (who knows no fatigue) 

with five chapbooks and two collections under her wing 

these three will spring poetry into a summer party 

so register now and do not be tardy! 


The Second Zoom Event with Elese Daniels and Ashley-Devon Williamston 

And on April 20 

in the evening at 7 p.m. sharp, 

hear the tender musings of two local poets 

who deliver straight from the heart. 

Meet Ashley-Devon Williamston, 

Inkwell host and accomplished writer, 

Along with the familiar Elese Daniels- 

poet, performer, and bicycle rider. 

Of nature and love and heartbreak too 

and all things that make life rich and new, 

In the garden, these poets expound on 

another spring in bloom. 


Our Community Poetry Project 

Late last summer, the world looked so bleak 

I felt so overwhelmed 

That I could scarcely speak 

Then a blessing fell into my lap 

A poem that was so enlivening 

It opened up the tap 

If just those few words could uplift me 

Perhaps poetry would be good 

For the whole community 

And thus, “You May Contribute a Verse 

Our community poetry project 

Was born into the universe 

For the past six months, CHPL has been collecting poetry, surrounding a common theme, from our community. The basis for the project was inspiring one another and putting a voice to our shared experiences. Now, you can enjoy a handful of our featured contributors on the library’s YouTube channel, just in time for National Poetry Month. Enormous thanks to everyone who contributed to this project!  

Don’t forget to register for the 23rd Annual Poetry in the Garden Zoom readings on our events calendar here and here. And visit your local branch library to check out some great works of poetry.