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Enjoy poetry at Tucson Botanical Gardens

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Do you love gardens and poetry? Then, consider a visit to Arizona's Tucson Botanical Gardens, where poetry and nature combine harmoniously in a “Poetry in the Gardens” event series to create a sensory and literary experience of words and blossoms. In a different garden space each month, attendees of “Poetry in the Gardens” explore literature, nature, and gardening themes.

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Evocative garden spaces

Tucson Botanical Gardens is a popular garden oasis in the heart of a Southwestern city bookended by two, separate sections of Saguaro National Park and surrounded by multiple mountain ranges. At Tucson Botanical Gardens, sixteen unique gardens provide intriguing diversity. For example, the tropical Butterfly Magic exhibit presents colorful, living, winged glory and orchids to visitors, and the new Café Botanica and relaxing patio space deliciously connects Sonoran desert culinary traditions with local, sustainable ingredients. Peruse a list of some of the names given to the site’s intriguing gardens, such as Aloe Alley, Garden Railway, Sensory Patios, Children’s Discovery, Backyard Bird Garden, Nuestro Jardin, Xeriscape Garden, Plants of the Tohono O’odham Path, and Zen Garden, to fire your imaginative curiosity and build your hunger for further exploration.

Time to build creative possibilities

Together, Tucson Botanical Gardens and the University of Arizona Poetry Center host the current monthly poetry discussion series, “Poetry in the Gardens,” in a beautiful environment that encourages lovers of nature and poetry to travel fresh paths, to “Dwell in possibility” as indicated by Emily Dickinson. Nature and poetry unite to open up connections as described in Muso Soseki’s words, “Time for a walk/in the world outside/and a look at who I am.”

March and April dates

The March session of “Poetry in the Gardens” will be held on Saturday, March 29th, from 10 AM to 11:30 AM. The theme for the March class is Ekphrastic poetry -- poems inspired by a piece of art. The April session of “Poetry in the Gardens” will be held on Saturday, April 26th, from 10 AM to 11:30 AM. The theme of the April session is Native Poetry.

Bring pen and paper

Attendance to “Poetry in the Gardens” is free with garden admission. Docents lead the discussion and provide participants with a packet of poems. No prior knowledge of poetry is needed, but a pen and notebook are recommended.


The Tucson Botanical Gardens are located at 2150 N. Alvernon Way. Garden hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Admission fees with discounts for students as well as the military and full membership information are available online.


See the slideshow accompanying this article for some perspectives of strolling Tucson Botanical Gardens. Images of the site’s peaceful Zen Garden, butterflies and orchids from Butterfly Magic, the ground’s desert plants, and a view of Café Botanica’s patio are included.

Creative enrichment

Blossoms and words share a natural kinship, for as artist Georgia O’Keefe indicated, “When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for the moment.” Nature intensifies and enriches experiences. In combination, nature and poetry have a kinship appreciated by naturalist and poet, Mary Oliver, when she states, “May I also bring to each blue and cloudy morning a suitable exuberance, a few exact/words, bowing and snapping.” Find out for yourself. Bring your love of nature and poetry to join the conversation at Tucson Botanical Garden’s “Poetry in the Gardens” series.

Find the take in this article to be helpful? National and International Travel and Recreation as well as National Education and Industry materials come from a husband and wife creative team, who travel extensively as photonaturalists and writers. One is an experienced research scientist with a doctorate in Material Sciences and background in optics research. The other is former Vice President of GKE (Global Knowledge Exchange), who served as a US Web-based Education Commissioner during the Clinton administration, and was a former US National Tech&Learning Teacher of the Year.

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