National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month. This year’s theme is ‘Time’…  Join us, every school day throughout the month of April, for a feature poem on the theme.

Our poem of the day for today is: Where There’s A Wall by Canadian poet Joy Kogawa.

Where there’s a wall
there’s a way through a
gate or door. There’s even
a ladder perhaps and a
sentinel who sometimes sleeps.
There are secret passwords you
can overhear. There are methods
of torture for extracting clues
to maps of underground passages.
There are zeppelins, helicopters,
rockets, bombs, battering rams,
armies with trumpets whose
all at once blast shatters
the foundations.

Where there’s a wall there are
words to whisper by loose bricks,
wailing prayers to utter, birds
to carry messages taped to their feet.
There are letters to be written —
poems even.

Faint as in a dream
is the voice that calls
from the belly
of the wall.

Joy Kogawa was born in Vancouver.  During World War Two she was sent with her family to an internment camp for Japanese-Canadians.  Her writing often focuses on the lasting scars of racism. She is a member of the Order of Canada and the Order of British Columbia.

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