5 Deliciously Decadent Ways to Take On National Poetry Month

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Photo by Hanna East. Creative Commons, via Flickr.

Why should National Poetry Month be oh-so-predictable? It's time to take it into your own hands and spice up April. Here are just 5 deliciously decadent ways:

1. Jazz it with Jewels

The story of the world is rich with gems and jewels. Take an exotic and fascinating trip with jeweler Aja Raden and discover those riches in her book Stoned: Jewelry, Obsession, and How Desire Shapes the World. While you're prospecting for the secrets of sparkling desire, take time to mine her words, and create a few found poems fit for a king.

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Or, pile up poetry riches with the jealous poem stack technique, using Victoria Finlay's Jewels: A Secret History as your treasure chest. Besides getting some golden poem starters, you can go on a grand adventure! Finlay will take you to the underground opal churches of outback Australia, the once pearl-rich rivers of Scotland, the peridot mines on an Apache reservation in Arizona, the remote ruby mines in the mountains of northern Burma, and more. (Just remember to watch for scorpions as you crawl with Finlay through Cleopatra's long-deserted emerald mines!)

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2. Lavish Luscious Love

The history of poetry is love and war. Choose the former this National Poetry Month, and be lavish. Try reading a love poem a day to your best guy or girl. Not sure where to start? Try one of these 10 Tantalizing Titles.

You could also pick up this free e-book of jeans poems and photos, and use it as inspiration to embark on your own jeans poems and photos project. Whose jeans? Your lover's, of course! What better way to sweetly get into his (or her) jeans this National Poetry Month.

3. Go for the Roses

Did you know the Romans used to drop loads and loads of rose petals onto their party guests' heads? One unfortunate man (so sorry!) even drowned in roses.

Now, nobody wants you to drown in roses. But how about rose poems? You could fill April with the scent of funny-to-serious readings of rose poems. You could sketch a rose daily, to go with your chosen verse.

Or make some rose desserts. And buy yourself (or your lover) a few roses each week in April. Go for the poetic this year, not just for poems. (Sure, you could pretend to be Cleopatra and scatter rose petals by your bed, although it might get expensive to do so to a depth of half a meter.)

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4. Revel in Red

While the rest of spring is paling in pastels, you can set yourself apart with red. Start with red poems and add to taste...

red velvet tea, to accompany reading poetry aloud with friends

• a secret red ribbon you carry in your pocket, for a poetic feeling of passion

• a stash of red rose petals, a few of which you can leave with small poems in fun places (the subway, your lover's bedside table, the tip tray in your favorite restaurant, a good neighbor's mailbox, etc.)

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5. Choose Chocolate

Believe it or not, chocolate partly got its start with prim Quakers in Europe. What followed was a story of failures, spies, and even a mistake that made all the difference. Today, we enjoy the decadence of chocolate, without much thought for all that came before.

This National Poetry Month, why not learn about the intriguing history of chocolate? Bring along your chocolate poems, of course.

And, if you're feeling really decadent, try out some new chocolates every week in April. You won't regret the melt-in-your-mouth confections from L. A. Burdick, for instance.

People will thank you, too, if you leave a few chocolates with your poems--on a co-worker's desk, at the dinner table, or with your favorite librarians, teachers, or students.

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