I have founded a holiday called March Forth. No, I didn’t misspell the word fourth. I mean for it to be a play on words, a pun. Long ago when our now adult children were little, I started celebrating March 4 because it is the only date in the year that makes a sentence: March Forth! I saw it (and still treat it) as a day for decisive action, taking on a new challenge, stepping out boldly to accomplish a task, to act on someone’s behalf, to do good. Back then I played Sousa and we marched around the house. Because the holiday is based on a pun, most people I explain it to roll their eyes. I’ve wondered if I could ever promote this in such a way that it would become more widely known, a national holiday to note a fun literary oddity in the date and also, to take a bold action. I’ve written more about March Forth before here, here, here and here.
This year, about six weeks before March 4, I marched fourth in a bold and surprising way. I applied to be the Editor of our local newspaper, the Greenbelt News Review. Imagine my surprise when I was hired. It is a 16 to 20 hour a week job which means I will have time to write in this blog and also to compile, edit, and publish my own writing. Of all the years I’ve celebrated my made-up holiday, the way I marched forth this year has been the boldest yet.
Here are suggestions I offered in an earlier essay about March Forth about literary ways you might celebrate the day:
You can make this into a literary event as well. Invite people over for a nice meal. Sing a song. Read a poem. Go around the table and share with your fellow Marchers what you’re going to do, big or small, that will be your way to march forth. Wouldn’t it be a grand joke worth a hearty belly-laugh if this caught on? Imagine a holiday based on a goofy pun that leads people to act, to serve, to boldly do what they’ve maybe always wanted to do but just needed the right moment. Or the right word play!
I hope your March Forth celebration this year is a good one, full of opportunities to not only enjoy the day’s pun, but also to decisively act in ways you may not ever have considered, like going to work for the local paper. Look for ways today to take the challenge of helping and loving others and to whole-heartedly celebrate life.