The Liminality Journal
The Liminality Journal
Why I Use Poetry in My Books

Why I Use Poetry in My Books

plus a free poem from Living Resistance!

Hello friends!

Happy Tuesday. Today I kept my youngest home from school because I thought we had a doctor’s appointment, and then I realized I’d written the date wrong and that appointment is tomorrow, so we ran home, grabbed the backpack, and filled out the official tardy slip as I accepted, with a few jokes, that my brain is in many places lately. How’s your week been!?

Today’s podcast episode is a short snippet, a little over 3 minutes long. It’s about why I insert poetry into my books, plus a reading of a new poem from Living Resistance!

Please take a few moments to listen, or read the whole thing in the text below.

And mark your calendars for a month from today, March 7th! I can’t wait for you to hold Living Resistance in your hands or listen to my voice reading to you on Audible. I hope that in my words and stories you find a home, a safe place, a curious spot to ask some questions for your own life and to know you’re not alone on the journey.

And now, onto today’s podcast episode:

Hi everyone, thank you so much for joining me here at the Liminality Journal.

My book, Living Resistance, is coming out a month from today, March 7th!

And I wanted to talk a little bit on today’s episode about the poetry I use in my books.

I have never published a full poetry book, but poetry has always meant a lot to me.

I’ve been writing poetry since I was young.

The best way to incorporate poetry into my books is to slide them into different sections and chapters. I kind of believe that poems can add a breath, help us take a pause, to stop a moment and consider what we are reading, thinking, and processing.

A lot my books center around difficult topics, that can be triggering or overwhelming, like colonization, white supremacy, oppression, and hate.

My work as a storyteller is to leave space for readers, and for myself, to stop and pause.

My first book, Glory Happening, is a series of essays and prayers, and the prayers are very much written as poems.

My second book, Native, is full of poems. I inserted them into chapters, beginning of sections of the book, as a space to just pause.

In my new book, Living Resistance, there are poems, again, at the beginnings of the sections of the book, strewn throughout.

And today, I want to read you one of these poems.

This poem is from Part 2 of the book, The Communal Realm, which you’ll read about in the book. I’m going to read you the poem at the beginning of this section:

Maybe you don’t know strength
until you’ve rested beneath
the branches of a magnolia tree,
feeling the weight of her regal, waxed leaves. Maybe you don’t know community
until you’ve watched ants
rebuild what was broken
by a world much bigger than theirs.
Maybe you don’t know fortitude
until you’ve noticed geese
fly to the furthest border of warmth
to protect their children.
Maybe you don’t know compassion
until you place your hands in the dirt
and feel the pulse of the earth,
her heart and soul welcoming you.
Maybe you don’t know time
until you run your fingers
over a river rock,
their skin softened by generations of magic. Maybe you don’t know yourself
until the mirror of the water
reminds you of your goodness
and brings you home again.

Thank you, again, for all your support along the way. Make sure you pre-order your copy of Living Resistance, and stay tuned for more news and sneak peeks in the coming weeks!

The Liminality Journal
The Liminality Journal
thoughts on the in-between
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Kaitlin Curtice