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Obama celebrates National Poetry Month, says world would be ‘pretty barren’ without it

(AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)

By Darlene Superville


(AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)

(AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)

WASHINGTON _ President Barack Obama says poetry helps people understand themselves and each other and says the world would be “pretty barren” without it.

Obama celebrated National Poetry Month at the White House on Friday by inviting student poets to a workshop and reading by American poet Elizabeth Alexander.

Alexander wrote and delivered a poem at Obama’s inauguration in 2009. They once taught together at the University of Chicago.

Obama says poetry matters as much as any other art form because it provides texture to human life.

Alexander now teaches at Yale. She read from her newly released memoir, “The Light of the World,” which she wrote after the unexpected death of her husband.

Michelle Obama used one word to describe Alexander after the emotional reading: genius.

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