Is it a coincidence that National Poetry Month and Jazz Appreciation Month (or JAM, which is probably the most fitting acronym ever made) share the month of April? I think not. In my opinion, jazz and poetry go very well together. Jazz does in music what poetry does in print: it embraces improvisation and experimentation and, as a result, expresses an idea in a new and powerful way. It’s hard to say exactly what makes jazz and poetry such potent forms of expression, but when a song or a poem hits me, it hits deep, and it hits hard.
With the jazzy ideas of improvising and experimenting in mind, craft a poem, or even a poetic prose piece, about a strong emotion you’ve felt or an idea that is meaningful to you. Start by distilling the emotion or idea down to its basic parts. Then, expand on those initial thoughts to create a fuller picture of your subject. Think of word connotations, memories, people, places, or other things you associate with your subject and use those to expand on it and improvise poetically.