Passwords: Ann Lauterbach on John Ashbery

Poet Ann Lauterbach discusses the work of John Ashbery, a hugely influential poet who has published over twenty books of poetry. His volumes include Some Trees, chosen by W. H. Auden for the Yale Younger Poet Series, and Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror, which received the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, the National Book Critics Circle Award and the National Book Award.

Passwords: The Road to William Carlos Williams with Philip Levine

Philip Levine discusses his discovery of the poetry of William Carlos Williams and how it changed the way he thought about language and the creation of a poem.

Decreation: How Women Like Sappho, Marguerite Porete and Simone Weil Tell God

Poet Anne Carson discusses the life and work of three women featured in her recent libretto Decreation—the ancient Greek lyric poet Sappho; Marguerite Porete, the 13th century mystic and heretic; and the French philosopher and religious apologist Simone Weil—considering their relationship both to God and to writing.

Passwords: J.D. McClatchy on Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882) was revered during his lifetime as America's beloved national bard, and for generations afterwards he was a staple of the hearthside and the schoolroom. But for decades now his fame has receded. Poet, editor and critic J.D. McClatchy reads and discusses Longfellow's work, muses on the tides of taste, and presents a fresh view of this long-neglected and underestimated poet.

Why Write Poems in Times of Crisis?

Distinguished scholar Haruo Shirane, Shincho Professor of Japanese Literature and Culture at Columbia University, will moderate a panel discussion with two survivors of the March 11, 2011 earthquake in Japan, about their tanka poems written in response to the earthquake and its aftermath. Their poems form part of the exhibition, “Voices of Japan,” at the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine which opens June 14.

Showcase Readings

Readings by Alan Gilbert, Karla Kelsey, Marie–Elizabeth Mali & Laura Newbern

Poets House Emerging Poets Residency Reading

A reading by participants in the inaugural Poets House Emerging Poets Residency: Desiree Alvarez, Cathy Linh Che, Jaime Shearn Coan, Monica A. Hand, Danniel Schoonebeek, Sarah V. Schweig, Idrissa Simmonds, Amber Atiya Stewart and Elizabeth Zuba.

We’re Floating: An Interactive Poetry Walk with Artist and Poet Jon Cotner

Walks begin at Poets House at 4:00pm, 5:00pm, 6:00pm and 7:00pm, and last for 45 minutes.

We’re Floating is a new interactive walk designed by artist and poet Jon Cotner. Each hour he leads dialogues with participants as they stroll through Rockefeller Park in Battery Park City. The work of Japanese poet Matsuo Bashō is mapped onto the landscape and put into play, bringing everyone closer to this floating world.

2012: Martín Espada reads 'Blessed Be the Truth Tellers'

Martín Espada reads his poem "Blessed Be the Truth Tellers," and talks about its dedicatee, fellow poet Jack Agüeros, as part of his 25th Anniversary Passwords program on 20th Century Puerto Rican poetry.

Sewing, Hammering, Ploughing, Rowing, Welding, Sanding: Whatever It Takes to Finish That Poem with Scott Hightower

A brief review of poetry's history, including glancing considerations of metric and syllabic measures of writing from the Anglo-Saxon to modern free verse will launch this workshop. Poets will draw on the intricate dynamics of poetry's two-headed tradition: oral and written. A weekly reading by each poetry student in the circle will serve as point of departure for discussions of the relationships of craft and expression to the inner music of the poem.


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