We are not sure about how many of you know that World Poetry Day is observed on 21st March every year. In fact it was declared by UNESCO in 1999. According to UNESCO its purpose is to promote the reading, writing, publishing and teaching of poetry throughout the world and, as the original UNESCO declaration says, to “give fresh recognition and impetus to national, regional and international poetry movements”. Traditionally Poetry Day used to be celebrated in the month of October, sometimes on the 5th. But in the latter part of 20th century the world community celebrated on the 15th of October, the birth day of the Roman epic poet Virgil. In many countries still they follow a traditional October date.
Whatever be the date, is it celebrated and if so what is its impact are million dollar questions to be asked. Poetry is the mother of all literary forms, yet it is peculiar, in the sense that it can capture all the depths of life from the practical to the imaginary. Poetry is everlasting and always contemporary because it mainly caters to the emotions of people. Historical events, incidents, cultural milieu, civilizations, ways of life, philosophies, scientific theories etc. will change in life but human emotional experiences are the same always. Hence as long as humans live, poetry also lives, even though its importance may be sidelined a little bit due to a generation’s priorities be placed upon ultimate pleasures in life with a utilitarian outlook. Unfortunately that is the time we are passing through now and already there are signs that sooner than latter it will change and poetry will be danced once again among men.
Sandhya S.N & J.T Jayasingh