Downtown Eau Claire, Wisconsin

Sheltering With Poems

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Article number: BK-SHWP-CS

Wisconsin Poets Respond to the Coronavirus Pandemic

“Sheltering with Poems,” an anthology of poems from 74 Wisconsin writers.

In his foreword to the anthology, former Wisconsin Poet Laureate Max Garland “modestly” proposes “adding poets and artists to the list of essential workers.” While not as vital or heroic as nurses, doctors, teachers and “those among us doing what needs to be done day after day,” Garland says poetry can relate the “ongoing news of what happens in the hearts and minds of ordinary people facing extraordinary peril. News from the front lines of feeling.”

The poets in this anthology are nurses and lawyers, teachers and scientists, artists, students, booksellers and business owners. Their poems speak to all of us going through this pandemic together.

“If there is shelter in poetry, or art itself, it’s a movable shelter,” Garland writes, “an ancient antigen, shelter that preserves, but also reinvigorates; comforts, but also reawakens our latent capacity for healing.”