In the beforetimes, I tried to read at least one poem first thing every morning. Instead of reaching for my phone, plunging myself into an abyss of messages from friends, meetings and action items from work, and the incessant catastrophe of breaking news, reading poems aloud would simultaneously ground me and lift my spirits—the best way to start the day.

If you open your eyes and ears, poetry is everywhere. Only in the most narrow view is poetry just another genre of literature: Prose can be poetry. Fiction and non-fiction can both be poetry, as can standup comedy, a dramatic play, or a memoir. A religious text. A speech. The liner notes on the back of a record. But what about the record itself? Poetry doesn’t need words: A painting or sculpture, a film or a song can all be poetry. But poetry doesn't end at art either. A conversation on the bus, a dance move in the club, a quiet moment with a lover at sunset...

It’s not just another genre like “fiction” because, in reality, “poetry” is a praise word. In other words, a book is just a book and a song is just a song, but poetry is the good stuff, the stuff that sends shivers down your spine. Poetry makes you new.

Today I’m thankful for that.