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Detail of Ugly Duckling Presse broadside.

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Poetry Broadsides from Ugly Duckling Presse & Small Fires Press: An Online Exhibition

Poets House Letterpress Broadsides, featuring works produced by Ugly Duckling and Small Fires Press for Poets House special occasions, are on view on our website as an online exhibition now!

We invite you to spend some quiet time with these poems that have been printed with care and love by esteemed Brooklyn-based Ugly Duckling Presse and New Orleans-based Small Fires Press. These limited-edition beauties have been digitally scanned for your viewing pleasure, and we are thrilled to offer a sampling from our archives.

Broadsides have a long and storied history as one of the first vehicles for disseminating poetry to the public. After the invention of moveable type in the 15th century, proclamations and official notices were printed on broadsides and distributed. Broadsides were later used for manifestos, political speeches, and other forms of political resistance. In 16th century England, poems—in the ballad form—were printed on them. In the 20th and 21st centuries, poetry broadsides became a labor of love for small presses and an important way for poetry to be experienced outside of the book form.

We are grateful to the independent poetry presses that keep the tradition alive and are devoted to the beauty of poetry in print, in all varieties.

Please visit the Poets House Letterpress Broadsides online exhibition to read and enjoy all the selections. And check out our other online exhibitions for more virtual viewing and reading adventures!

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