Saturday, February 10, 2024

Keynote: Joseph Coelho

Joseph's poems have been published in several Macmillan anthologies including Green Glass Beads ed. by Jacqueline Wilson. Joseph has been a guest poet on Cbeebies Rhyme Rocket where he was beamed up from The Rhyme Rock to perform his Bug Poem. His debut children's collection "Werewolf Club Rules" is published by Frances Lincoln and was the winner of the 2015 CLPE CLiPPA Poetry Award. 

Joseph is the Waterstones Children's Laureate. Read all about his goals and the powerful things he's doing with and for kids. 

Joseph starts by sharing,"Poetry can help all of us, no matter what we write, can make our writing sing."

"I truly believe we are all poets."

Joseph writes across formats...all kinds of books. He grew up in nature, and loved writing with friends. Into his 20s he began preforming poems, which led him to writing for young people, which led to him writing for TV. He still turns to the outdoors to be inspired. 

Joseph says a good poet distills writing down to its essence, cutting straight to the marrow (like an artist drawing the perfect circle). 

He asks: Did you know you can write a poem with one word? 

The trick is to have a very long title!

The Sad Tale of a Fly


Joseph tell us we are all poets and we all need to claim that right as poets. 

Poetry can be freeform or structured. 

With the help of attendees ,Joseph creates a MORERAPS poem which uses poetic devices. Each line of the poem is one of the following poetic devices. 

You can create your own MORERAPS poems to explore your story, to add more to your work. 

Like poetry, creativity needs to be fed and shared. When Joseph willingly started to give his creativity, rather than feeling it was something that he had to do, everything started to flow for him. 

Joseph shares a powerful message:

"Wait for no one. There are no gatekeepers except to those you give keys and chains to."

Joseph tells the room, "It's okay to play. There's no right or wrong way to do things. By sharing and being of service, your creativity blossoms."

Check out Joseph's YouTube channel and his Poetry Prompts: 5 to 10 minutes interactive guides for kids to write poetry. 

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