On Labour Day weekend in 1969, some young people took to downtown Cobourg with brushes in hand to paint the downtown, literally. It was called a Paint-In. Retail stores offered up their windows for a week to be painted by local artists. Only water-colours could be used. The Sept 3 issue of Cobourg Sentinel Star did a big front-page-above-the-fold spread on the Paint-In.
There are too many empty retail outlets downtown with store windows looking more like sore windows. Here’s the pitch.
Cobourg is chock-a-block with poets. They could fill the emptiness of windows with literary substance. One poem per window. The Cobourg Poetry Workshop is a gathering pot of poets, emerging poets, and poetry lovers who could easily fill the windows with their inspiration.
Surely the town could provide the paper and print one poem from each of Cobourg’s three Poet Laureates. The current Poet Laureate could vet the submitted poems from others.
There must be some aspiring poets in our three high schools who would like to display their highly refined literacy.
Don’t take my word for it, take theirs and celebrate it. Fill empty windows with eloquent intelligence. Spread the word. Bring poetry out of the better poems and gardens salons and take it to the streets.
Poetry all too often lies like a cadaver collecting dust on library shelves. Take it to the streets. Poetry for pedestrians.
Raise Cobourg’s stanza of living, post poetry on the ephemeral emptiness of store windows. Make Cobourg our poem and native land.