Lunch Poems With Arthur Sze

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“Revelation never comes as a fern uncoiling / a frond in mist; it comes when I trip on a root, / slap a mosquito on my arm,” reads Arthur Sze from his poem "Earthshine" in this 2008 video for the Lunch Poems reading series at the University of California, Berkeley. Sze’s latest collection, The Glass Constellation: New and Collected Poems (Copper Canyon Press, 2021), is featured in Page One in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Women Warriors Reading: Monica Sok

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“There’s a sister who works so hard she never talks. / A sister who screams when she hears dogs bark.” Monica Sok reads “Sestina” from her debut poetry collection, A Nail the Evening Hangs On (Copper Canyon Press, 2020), for Women Warriors: A Solidarity Reading, presented by the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, which featured over forty Asian American women writers. 

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The Poet Is In

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“I had a dream of having poetry at the intersections of New York, where all kinds of people pass through daily,” says Marie Howe, former New York State poet laureate, in this 2015 video about the inspiration for the Poetry in Motion: The Poet Is In festival. The annual National Poetry Month event is hosted by the Poetry Society of America and MTA Arts & Design, and features poems written on request by award-winning poets.

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Melissa Febos Reads From Girlhood

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“It is so painful to be loved sometimes. Intolerable even.” In this 2020 virtual event hosted by Salve Regina University, Melissa Febos reads from her new essay collection, Girlhood (Bloomsbury, 2021), and answers questions about her writing process. A profile of Febos by Brian Gresko appears in the March/April issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

ENCLAVE Series With Peter Gizzi

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In this installment of ENCLAVE, a virtual reading series curated by Rae Armantrout and Jeanne Heuving, poet Peter Gizzi reads from his collections Archeophonics (Wesleyan University Press, 2016) and Now It’s Dark (Wesleyan University Press, 2020), which is featured in Page One in the January/February issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Jean Valentine Reading at Boston University

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“I am poling / my way into my life. / It seems / like another life,” reads the late poet Jean Valentine from her poem “La Chalupa, the Boat” in this 2010 video recorded at Boston University. Valentine is the author of fourteen poetry collections including Door in the Mountain: New and Collected Poems, 1965–2003, which won the National Book Award, and Break the Glass, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. She died at the age of eighty-six on December 29, 2020.

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Adrienne Rich

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“There’s a place between two stands of trees where the grass grows uphill / and the old revolutionary road breaks off into shadows…” In this 2009 video, pioneering feminist poet Adrienne Rich reads her poem “What Kind of Times Are These?” at the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival. Rich died at the age of eighty-two on March 27, 2012.

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Love After Love

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“You will love again the stranger who was your self.” Dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson reads Derek Walcott’s poem “Love After Love” from Collected Poems: 1948–1984 (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1986) for a tribute to the poet and playwright. Walcott, who won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1992, passed away on March 17, 2017.

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A Short Story of Falling

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“What I love about water is that it spends its whole time falling,” begins Alice Oswald as she introduces her poem “A Short Story of Falling” from her 2017 Griffin Poetry Prize–winning collection, Falling Awake (Jonathan Cape, 2016). “It’s always, apparently, trying to find the lowest place possible and when it finds the lowest place possible, it lies there wide awake.”

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The Power of Poetry

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Looking for a prescription of poetry? In this Intelligence Squared video, William Sieghart, author of The Poetry Pharmacy: Tried-and-True Prescriptions for the Heart, Mind and Soul (Penguin Books, 2017), and Jeanette Winterson, author of Frankissstein: A Love Story (Grove Press, 2019), introduce poems that have changed their lives as a cast of actors—including Tom Burke, Helena Bonham Carter, Jason Isaacs, and Sue Perkins—recite them.

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