The idea of the poetry box is deceivingly simple, what could be so hard about bringing a poem and art together? Ah, you’d be surprised. Once the artist gets involved with a poem that has been carefully crafted, each word carefully chosen, it’s a problem of artistic restraint and thoughtful design so that the poem and the art support each other. This challenge is a mini version of the architectural problem of making a good museum for visual art where the architect is responsible for creating a platform for the best interpretation of the art, the building design must compliment not overpower the art. Right now, twenty artists and poets and a group of a talented high school students are at work on this problem. When they finally get installed throughout the city in early May in commercial and public spaces, as well as the campus of University of Missouri/St Louis it will all look so simple- and so seductive for the public to join in and respond. The project opens May 2nd with a reception and a poetry walk in the Central West End neighborhood, Centro Furnishing, one of the cool sites, will host the reception at 6 p.m. and the walk starts from there at 6:45. Poets will read at their boxes and artists will talk about their collaboration. The image here is from artist/poet Jane Birdsall-Lander whose poetry boxes will be at the public library and Left Bank Bookstore in the Central West End. On May 3rd there’ll be a second reception and poetry walk at the University of St Louis campus. Check back soon for news about all the artists and poets involved and a list of sites.