person writing outside

4 Reasons You Should Write Eco-Poetry

Nature themes are often used throughout poems to paint a scene or convey an emotion. But some poets take this inspiration a step further through eco-poetry. This genre not only includes observations of the natural world but incorporates a call to action by connecting our relationship with nature to broader environmental issues. If you’re searching for a new poetry genre, here are four reasons you should try writing eco-poetry.

You can use your poetic voice to affect change


Although writing and publishing beautifully written poetry is by itself creatively fulfilling, if you wish to also use your voice to influence opinions and affect change, eco-poetry could be a good fit. When you begin exploring this genre, you’ll likely find yourself researching both local and global environmental issues, increasing your awareness of these pressing problems. As you get to know your local ecosystems, species, and conservation causes better, you might even feel inspired to get involved with advocacy efforts, potentially using your poetry as a vehicle to drive change in your own life. Going forward, maybe you’ll incorporate your eco-poetry in marketing efforts for a nonprofit, or perhaps you’ll perform an eco-poem at an organization’s event..


Writing eco-poetry can deepen your connection to nature


Eco-poetry inevitably requires you to explore the natural world. Spending time outdoors while writing poems can help you develop a deeper, more introspective understanding of your relationship with the earth. This might encourage you to be more appreciative of the interconnectedness of ecosystems, humans, wildlife, and plant life, which in turn will allow you to better use your voice to impact needed change. Being outside also has a proven and direct positive impact on mental and emotional health, providing an opportunity to practice self-care.


You’ll find inspiration everywhere—writer’s block who?


As a poet, you’ve likely experienced writer’s block from time to time. Once you begin writing eco-poems, though, you’ll find that creative inspiration is all around you, since nature provides effective and rich themes and metaphors for your poetry. Also, whether you live in an urban, suburban, or rural place, nature and environmental issues are everywhere. Simply step outside your door and start noticing your surroundings—the sky, wildlife, plants. Whatever you observe can likely be connected to conservation, allowing you to put a creative spin on a particular issue through your writing. 


You can connect with like-minded writers


Joining a poetry community can help you both expand your skillset and find support as you develop your craft. As you venture into the world of eco-poetry, you might also find a community of like-minded writers you connect with. Maybe you’ll attend an eco-poetry workshop or event where you’ll meet others with similar opinions and goals. As you search for your community, consider environmentally-conscious poetry organizations like Poets for the Planet.


Whether you volunteer for a local nonprofit, submit your work for publication in a literary journal or magazine, perform a spoken word eco-poem, or build an eco-poetry social media following, your work in this genre has the potential to positively impact society.