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​Just Read: Poetry

Just Read is a come-as-you-are, read-what-you-like online book club and so much more!

This monthly online book club is genre or theme based. Each month, a new genre or theme will be announced and your participation will be on your own and through social media.

Whether you are already an avid reader or want to be, whether you are looking for recommendations or know what you like, whether you are reading for you or reading to someone, Phoenix Public Library is here to help with a little inspiration.

Read what you like and be accountable to yourself.   

Each month, we will announce a book club genre or theme on our website. Read what you like within this genre or theme. Participate throughout the month by posting on social media, tagging Phoenix Public Library and #justreadppl to share, discuss and recommend your book choice.  Or, follow along on your own without posting on social media – it's all good! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube or visit our website for more about the Just Read online book club.

​"If everybody became a poet the world would be much better. We would all read to each other."

- Nikki Giovanni

April's theme is Poetry

Poetry exists in many forms. One or more of those forms is for you.

In celebration of National Poetry Month, we encourage you to explore poetry! If you are not currently a poetry lover, give it a whirl. If you are a fan of poetry, take this time to expand beyond your favorite poets or types of poetry or to simply indulge in your preferred mode of verse. Don't know where to start? Revisit a favorite childhood poem or poet. Ask a poetry reader who they'd recommend. Stop by the library and simply dive in.


​Book Clubs, Book Challenges, and More

Join the club​

Interested in an in-person book club or in starting or improving your own book club? Check out our Book Club Resources for more info. 

Need some more inspiration?

Try this list of reading challenges for enough ideas to feed your need to read.

​How to participate on social media

Show us what you are reading by posting a photo on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter by tagging Phoenix Public Library and including #justreadppl and we may share your photo to help inspire the reading lists of others! Share book reviews, too! 

Poetry Picks from Local Poets

Laura Tohe

The poetry of Pablo Neruda

One of my favorite books is Pablo Neruda's Twenty Love Poems and a Song of Despair.Photo of Laura Tohe

Neruda's poems take me into a world of beautiful language, a world full of sumptuousness imagery that
makes me look at the world in new ways and makes me grow as a poet.  

Discover Neruda's work in our catalog.

Laura Tohe is Diné.  She is Tsénahabiłnii, Sleepy Rock People clan, and born for the Tódich’inii, Bitter Water clan.  She grew up at Crystal, New Mexico near the Chuska Mountains on the Diné homeland.  

A poet, writer, and librettist, Tohe's work has been published in such journals as Ploughshares, New Letters, cream city review, Red Ink, World Literature Today and many others. Her work has appeared in the U.S., Canada, South America and in Europe with French, Dutch and Italian translations.   She has read her poetry internationally in the U.S., Europe, and South America. Laura holds a doctorate degree in creative writing, Indigenous American Literature, and American Literature. Laura is Professor with Exemplar Distinction in the English Department at Arizona State University and is an Arizona Speaks presenter for the Arizona Humanities that awarded her the 2006 Dan Schilling Public Scholar award. In 2015 Laura was honored as the Navajo Nation Poet Laureate for 2015-2017, a title given to her in celebration and recognition of her work as a poet and writer. Learn more:

Rosemarie Dombrowski

Leaves of grass

Photo of Rosemarie DombrowskiThe obvious choice for me is the 1860 edition of Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman. It's not only the beginning of the democratic impulse
in American poetry, it's the most overt equating of the sexual and the spiritual in the American canon, not to mention the most radical celebration of the body (and sexuality) in all its forms.

Rosemarie Dombrowski is the inaugural Poet Laureate of Phoenix. She lives to preach the gospel of poetry in all its forms. Her current
projects include rinky dink press, Write On, Downtown: a journal of student and community writing, the Phoenix Poetry Series, First Friday Poetry on Roosevelt Row, the Phoenix Community Poetry Gardens, and New Phx Voices: Teen Poetry Workshop & Open Mic at Burton Barr Central Library. Learn more:

Ashley Naftule

Wallace Stevens

Photo of Ashley NaftuleWallace's poems are beautiful, evocative mysteries. You can read this book front-to-back a dozen times and there will still be lines in there that refuse to reveal their meaning to you. And the thing is, you won't care: Stevens' writing is so imaginative and unique that worrying about what it all means is beside the point. Like a duckbill platypus, it just is."

Ashley Naftule is a writer & performer based in Phoenix, AZ. He’s been published in The Outline, Noisey, Phoenix New Times, The Hard Times, Rinky Dink Press,  Spiral Nature, Tucson Weekly, Runt Of The Web, Dark City Mystery Magazine, and special projects from Four Chambers Press. As a playwright and producer at Space55 theatre, he regularly organizes variety shows and theatrical productions in downtown Phoenix. Learn more:

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