Friend and fellow poet Kelli Russell Agodon came up with a terrific idea: in celebration of National Poetry Month, poets with blogs around the world would share their love of the art by giving away free books. Not only does it give me a chance to do something nice for my readers, it hopefully provides access to poetry to those who might not otherwise read it. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the month-long holiday.

Here’s how to enter: In the comments section of this post, leave either your blog address or an email where I can reach you. Entries will be accepted through April 30. On May 1, I will randomly select two lucky winners: each will get one of the books listed below absolutely free. Winners will need to provide me a postal address to send the books to. You can send the book to anyone you choose, anywhere in the world.

Not only is this a great deal, I think this is a good cause for what some may call a “dying art.” Please, share this post with your friends and family. You’ll not only give them a chance to win a book, but you’ll be helping to support the greater poetry community. And remember, the blogosphere is full of other giveaways. Just visit Kelli’s site to see what other books are up for grabs!

For the poetry giveaway in 2010, I offer the following:

One winner will recieve a copy of my own book, Diary of a Cell, which won the 2004 Steel Toe Books Poetry Prize, judged by Charles Harper Webb. Several of these poems have been read by Garrison Keillor on A Writer’s Almanac–probably the greatest thrill of my poetry “career.” One of my favorite reviews on Amazon says: masterfully blended the often poorly understood phenomena of the natural world with the more baffling world of human emotion by drawing on her experience as a scientist. She is able to orient the reader by placing common sentiments in the logical context of a scientific framework.

The second winner will receive a copy of The Imaginary Poets, edited by Alan Michael Parker and published by Tupelo Press. I struggled over what book second book to give away, as there are so many deserving titles. But no matter what your familiarity with the craft, I guarantee you’ve never seen a book like this! The back of the book describes the premise this way: Translate a poem into English, offer a biography of the poet and then write a short essay in which the poem, poet, and the corpus are considered–and make all of it up without once indicating you have done so. One of my absolute favorite reads.

Remember, in order to win one of the books above, you need to leave either a blog or email address in the comments section of this post. And please take the time to share this post!