Annunciation by Tracy K. Smith

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“I’ve turned old. I ache most / To be confronted by the real, / By the cold, the pitiless, the bleak.” In this 2018 video from the 92nd Street Y, Tracy K. Smith reads her poem “Annunciation,” which appears in her new collection, Such Color: New and Selected Poems (Graywolf Press, 2021). Smith’s fifth poetry collection is featured in Page One in the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Max Ritvo Poetry Prize: Michael Kleber-Diggs

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“I cannot say if the emptiness is / a grand celestial body or a vacuum / so complete nothing can escape.” Michael Kleber-Diggs reads from his debut poetry collection, Worldly Things (Milkweed Editions, 2021), winner of the 2020 Max Ritvo Poetry Prize, and speaks with Tracy K. Smith in this celebratory virtual event. Worldly Things is featured in Page One in the July/August issue of Poets & Writers Magazine

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Poetry in the Age of Technology With Tracy K. Smith

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“One of the women greeted me. / I love you, she said. She didn’t / Know me, but I believed her, / And a terrible new ache / Rolled over in my chest,” reads Tracy K. Smith from her poem “Wade in the Water” in this 2018 Library of Congress event with Ron Charles, book critic of the Washington Post. Smith is featured in a profile by Renée H. Shea in the March/April 2015 issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Tracy K. Smith at the Bookworm in Beijing

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“Great stones of whitewater / hammer down.” In this 2017 reading at the Bookworm, an independent bookstore in Beijing, Tracy K. Smith reads a translation of Yi Lei’s poem “Huangguoshu Waterfall,” included in My Name Will Grow Wide Like a Tree (Graywolf Press, 2020), translated from the Chinese by Changtai Bi and Smith, which is featured in Page One in the November/December issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Recommendations From Tracy K. Smith

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For PBS NewsHour, U.S. poet laureate Tracy K. Smith recommends recent poetry titles, including Look (Graywolf Press, 2016) by Solmaz Sharif, who was featured in “Shadows of Words: Our Twelfth Annual Look at Debut Poets” in Poets & Writers Magazine, and Lessons on Expulsion (Graywolf Press, 2017) by Erika L. Sanchez, who was profiled in “First” by Rigoberto González in the September/October issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Tracy K. Smith

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“In my own writing, I feel safest when I’m farthest from what I know.” Tracy K. Smith reads “Digging” by Seamus Heney, the poem she feels “invited her to start writing poetry,” and from “My God, It’s Full of Stars,” a poem she wrote about her father. This video, part of the P.O.P. series, was shot and edited by Rachel Eliza Griffiths in partnership with the Academy of American Poets.

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Hans Magnus Enzensberger and Tracy K. Smith

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“Even people who don’t read poems have poetry in their heads.” Filmed as part of the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, this video features poets Hans Magnus Enzensberger and Tracy K. Smith, who discuss the nature of poetry and their creative processes. Smith's memoir, Ordinary Light (Knopf, 2015), is a finalist for the 2015 National Book Award.

Life on Mars

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"My interest in science fiction was really based in what now seems like a very kitschy futuristic aesthetic—an image of the future from about forty years ago." Poet Tracy K. Smith discusses how she conducted research for her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Life on Mars (Graywolf Press, 2011). Smith, whose new book, the memoir Ordinary Light, is forthcoming from Knopf, is featured in the March/April issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Robert Bly: A Thousand Years of Joy

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"Robert, you've wasted so much of your life / Sitting indoors to write poems. Would you / Do that again? I would, a thousand times." In Robert Bly: A Thousand Years of Joy, director Haydn Reiss tracks the evolution of the prolific, mystical poet and his impact on American poetry through interviews with Louise Erdrich, Edward Hirsch, Tracy K. Smith, and others.

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