April is coming to an end and that means the end of National Poetry Month. Instead of focusing on books on writing poetry for teens, here are a few books about teens who write their own poetry. This includes books where teens write song lyrics because there are so many similarities between song lyrics and prose poetry. Good poetry contains effective imagery, compelling themes, originality and emotional evocativeness – also found in good song lyrics.
Adios, Nirvana (2011) by Conrad Wesselhoeft, selected as one of the winners of YALSA’s 2011 Best Fiction for Young Adults, is a new book that does that so well. Jonathan, 17, is a former star student; talented poet and musician who is just careening through life, fueled by Red Bull and No-Doze, still reeling from his twin brother’s death. He’s also facing the possibility of repeating his junior year. The only things standing between him and failure are his devoted best friends or â€œThicks,â€ an understanding principal and his English teacher. What will ensure that he makes it to senior year? He must attend class every day, help an 88-year-old WWII veteran write his memoir, and perform his principal’s favorite song, â€œCrossing the River Styx,â€ at graduation on a legendary guitar donated to the school by rocker hero Eddie Vedder in honor of his talented musician brother. Jonathan’s poetry is scattered throughout the novel â€œChaos XIII â€“ O sleeping bum of a building, you cradle the litter of our streets under your fake Doric columnsâ€¦â€ and shows his talent as a poet and prose writer.
Open-mic poetry nights are used to highlight a number of poetry-writing teens in a lot of older teen books: Continue reading Teens write their OWN poetry