World Poetry Day 2021 celebrations are on Sunday, 21 March 2021. Unesco Proposed every 21st March as World Poetry Day since 1999.
Purpose of the World Poetry Day
The purpose or theme of world poetry day is to recall the role of poetry in the survival of ancient languages, in the development of the world, and the enlightenment of the world. As argued above, ancient war heroes were encouraged by poetry and the medieval age revolutionary heroes and their followers were also inspired and motivated by poetry. The global community is convinced that the development of the modern world is indebted to the poets of the past. They used language in various ways that led to the enrichment and beautification of human knowledge and understanding.
World Poetry Day is a popular day among people, but it is not a day of public holiday anywhere in the world. People who are interested in this day attend the seminars and conferences arranged by the governmental and non-governmental agencies. Those who do not attend such seminars watch poetry presentations on TV or listen to favorite poetry on the radio. Some people share their favorite couplets on Social Media and columnists write columns appreciating the role of poetry as well as suggesting the best suitable topics for poetry in the current time.
Interesting Activities on World Poetry Day
- Buy a good poetry book of your taste or download an app, (You can download Mirakee mobile app)
- Explore the best poetry you feel you would enjoy,
- Read it intensively,
- Share it with friends,
- Give an attempt to write your emotions the way the poet has written,
- Follow the hashtag trends on Social Media: #WPD, #WorldPoetryDay, #PoetryDay.
History of World Poetry Day
According to the announcement made in the 30th General Conference session of UNESCO that was held in Paris in 1999, 21 March will be celebrated as a World Poetry Day every year throughout the world. The world leaders claimed that they recognize the unique ability of poetry to capture the creative spirit of the human mind, therefore they believe that an International Day must be allocated to this great human legacy. The purpose of allocating a day to poetry was to encourage young poets and to appreciate the role of poetry in the development and enlightenment of the world.
Why Poetry Day is Important?
Speech of World Poetry Day
The oldest form of readable and understandable human language is poetry because poetry was the best way to keep the language alive with its charm. Anciently, people used to speak the language, but it was not written. Therefore, the intelligentsia of the ancient societies was famous for writing meaningful poetry that was easy to memorize and was delivered orally from one generation to another. Poetry stayed alive in almost all societies because people had an emotional attachment to the words that were spoken in poetry. For example, religious and cultural myths in Greece, Rome, Persia, and Egypt were written in poetic form thousands of years ago. These myths were memorized by the masses and delivered to their successors; Iliad, Odyssey, Sohrab and Rustam, and different hymns famous among Greeks, Romans, and Egyptians are such examples. Thus, poetry was a sacred kind of language for ancient communities.
After Common Era (CE) started, poetry started contributing to the growth of languages like Latin, Arabic, Chinese, Persian, and other famous languages. Invaders started conquering foreign lands and migration of communities started among continents. People were dying everywhere on a large scale and so were their languages; the only thing that resisted the most to decay was poetry. Islamic Empire rose in Arab under the leadership of the Prophet Muhammad(PBUH) around five centuries after the Common Era started which would lead to a great clash between the European Crusaders and the Arab Muslims. This was the era when again the most dominant form of language was poetry. Chivalrous poems were memorized by masses and they were delivered to their lineage. The purpose of preaching religion was also fulfilled with poetry; Paradise Lost by John Milton, Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer, and many other poems became popular when a new language English emerged with the unification of French and Germans at the land now called England. Such poems were famous among almost all the nations on the face of Earth. Milton had started expressing political thoughts in poetry when he was writing and this passion was adulterated by William Wordsworth and his successor Romantic poets like P. B. Shelley, John Keats, and Lord Byron. Poetry became a wonderful political motivator from this era onwards. Different poets expressed their feelings about the status quo and many of them became the mouthpieces of their nations; like Walt Whitman in America, Allama Iqbal in Pakistan, Mehmet Akif Ersoy in Turkey, Shakespeare in England, Rabindranath Tagore in India, and Simin Behbahani in Iran. These poets encouraged their nations for revolutions or enriched their minds with knowledge and philosophic understanding. Moreover, many poets played a role to stop World Wars and Colonization like Edmund Blunden, Rupert Brooke, Maya Angelo, Robert Graves, Progressive Poets of India and Pakistan and many others. Poets’ attitude to criticize the governments’ wrong policies is not a rare thing even in the contemporary era. This rich history and the prominent role of poetry in the development and enlightenment of the world convince the global community to celebrate World Poetry Day.