(x = space)



Poem 181

(thanks for the Poetry 180 Project)


Where are you?

I’ll miss you for the summer

Billy Collins, thank you

And the Library of Congress

They are contact days, I know

Or contract

The days in a school year

By the number

And the project of a poem a day

To keep us sane,

To give us something to talk about

In class,

Who knows, maybe for extra credit

To write companion pieces

Illustrate them, turn them in

Tack them to a board

Somewhere (but in a place

of honor)

And for me, the poems give this

Once-and-future teacher

Something good

Once a day, especially

When nothing else seems good

Something to carry me

A thought, a momentary inspiration

New words, new ideas

Or simply confirmation that

I should keep reading (writing)

On my own, too


thank you


C L Couch



Poetry 180 is designed to make it easy for students to hear or read a poem on each of the 180 days of the school year. I have selected the poems you will find here with high school students in mind. They are intended to be listened to, and I suggest that all members of the school community be included as readers. A great time for the readings would be following the end of daily announcements over the public address system.

Billy Collins
Former Poet Laureate of the United States

Poetry 180  |  Poet Laureate Projects  |  Poet Laureate  |  Poetry & Literature  |  Programs  |  Library of Congress (loc.gov)


Nazaré Wall Art

Manolo Chrétien

Nazaré, Portugal