By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Sonia Sanchez is Philadelphia’s Poet Laureate and Jane Golden is the creator of Philadelphia‘s unique Mural Arts program. They have joined their passions and talents for peace, using haiku poetry as the medium on murals in the inner city.

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Haiku is a three line poem with 17 syllables written in a 5/7/5 syllable count. Students, residents, and visitors from around the world are invited to express their thoughts in a haiku, in a peace project online, a dedicated webpage at

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Selected haiku will be featured in mini-murals in unexpected locations around Philadelphia and will serve as places to stop and reflect. The final mural will be completed in the fall, honoring Sanchez and all the selected contributors.

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In a city with one of the highest homicide rates of the ten largest municipalities in the nation, helping people express themselves artistically with the purpose of bringing peace to their communities will hopefully bring positive change.