For National Poetry Month, the Academy of American Poets asked a different poet to use Twitter each day. As is the case with most social media, the results have varied widely.

D.A. Powell (fellow Harriet blogger from the summer of 2008) started things off on April 1 by asking, “What was the 1st poem you fell in love with?” which generated a deluge of suggestions from the Academy of American Poet’s Twitter followers and retweeters. My favorite answer? “As a kid, I taped poems of Rodgers, Hughes, Madhubuti, Poe, Brooks, Sanchez, & Giovanni to my bedroom walls.” Powell admirably spent much of the day responding individually to many tweets, while sending out a handful more of his own. (For the record, the 1st poem I fell in love with was “8th Wonder” by the Sugarhill Gang.)

Some of my other favorite tweets:

Dawn Lundy Martin (April 2): “Does the contemporary moment encourage or prohibit a poetic engagement? Are we writing into the world or despite it?”

Noelle Kocot (April 3): “Slammed four Dr. Peppers by the creek—livin' large!!”

Joshua Clover (April 6), who created a string of posts beginning with, “My writing time is funded by . . .”: “My writing time is funded by the mirage that we live in a meritocracy. #materialistanalysis.”

Richard Siken (April 4) tweeted a poem of his own one line at a time, and Jennifer Chang (April 5) included Twitter poems by her students.

For his April 11 slot, CAConrad is hoping to make his Twitter time, “a day of poetry community action! An action for BRAINSTORMING together! The topic: WHAT DO WE DO NOW to confront the Triple-headed US wars and multi-billion dollar US military industrial complex? What can WE DO as US poets to confront this, to help stop this, to change the perilous course our nation is setting for the world?”

Check out all the hot poetry Twitter action!!/POETSorg

Originally Published: April 7th, 2011

Alan Gilbert is the author of the poetry collections The Treatment of Monuments (2012) and Late in the Antenna Fields (2011). He has earned praise for his ability to move between personal, national, and global scales and experiences in his wide-ranging, politically and ethically astute poetry. He is the author...