Poetry Map Reveals a City’s Inner World


A new digital poetry map from the Toronto Public Library links city neighborhoods to the verse that has been written about them. (Toronto Star)

Celebrate National Library Week and National Poetry Month with our diverse collection of of content about poems, poets, and poetry.

Teachers, scroll down for a quick list of key resources, including a link to the Toronto Poetry Map and today’s MapMaker Interactive map!

Screen Shot 2015-04-13 at 8.17.22 AM

Discussion Ideas

  • Toronto’s terrific poetry map was spearheaded by the city’s poet laureate, George Elliott Clarke. What’s a poet laureate?
    • A poet laureate is a poet who has been officially appointed by the government or other organizing group.




  • Create a poetry map of your own using our MapMaker Interactive. Get inspired!
    • The Toronto Public Library suggests poems that mentioned a specific place, mentioned a place only in the title, and sometimes just mentioned a famous resident of an area.
      • named place: High Park
        Walk on over to High Park,
        hop the streetcar west. Find a bank
        by a river if you’re lucky.
      • unnamed place: The Junction
        Temperance dried up these streets
        in nineteen oh something
        & thirst became the hidebound
        neighbourhood legacy –
        oasis reversed.
      • resident: The Annex
        “I float on forgetting why I came and become caught in Atwood’s wide-brimmed hat.”
        (The great Canadian writer Margaret Atwood is a resident of The Annex, a Toronto neighborhood.)
    • You might want to include local advertising jingles or song lyrics, which are some of the most familiar poems memorized today.
    • Here’s a quick map of my own neck of the woods! Attach links to your own map in the comments to this blog post!





Toronto Star: Toronto poetry map reveals an inner world

Toronto Public Library: Toronto Poetry Map

Nat Geo: Explore our poetry collection! (Looking for an introduction to poetry? Try this one. Looking for something for older students? Try this.)

Nat Geo: SuperQuick Monterey County Poetry & Prose Map

Academy of American Poets: poetry near you

Power Poetry: Write Your Own Life Story poetry map

Leave a Reply