It's simple. Poetry shifts your consciousness. It forces you to look at the world with new eyes. It can unhinge us, dead-center-heart, where we live and breathe.
For those who don't take in poetry in large doses, how about just five books this year? That seems reasonable. Just this week, the National Book Critics Circle announced their finalists for 2013. A place to start. (Poetry can be a beautiful addiction.)
Frank Bidart, METAPHYSICAL DOG (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
Lucie Brock-Broido, STAY, ILLUSION (Knopf)
Denise Duhamel, BLOWOUT (University of Pittsburgh Press)
Bob Hicok, ELEGY OWED (Copper Canyon)
Carmen Gimenez Smith, MILK AND FILTH (University of Arizona Press)