John Berryman: A Centennial Seminar with Daniel Swift

In this interactive program, Britain-based poetry critic Daniel Swift, editor of The Heart is Strange: New Selected Poems as well as forthcoming centennial editions of Berryman’s work, will discuss the relationship between the biography of the Pulitzer Prize winning writer of The Dream Songs and the ways in which the life of this confessional poet might influence – or confuse – critical understandings of his works.

Architecture & Archives: The Library as Source Material with Valeria Luiselli

The author of Faces in the Crowd and Sidewalks, novelist and essayist Valeria Luiselli uses the city to exercise a roving intelligence, seeking out the questions imbedded in our human landscape. She'll discuss her month-long residency in the Poets House archives and the influence of poetry, architecture and archives on her work. Luiselli will be joined by Shannon Mattern, an Associate Professor in the School of Media Studies at The New School.

Catch Sight of Desire: A Monologue Lab for Poets with Lenelle Moïse

This energetic workshop combines theater exercises and writing prompts to encourage writers to create irresistible characters for the stage. Bring a pencil and wear loose, comfortable clothing.

Poet and performer Lenelle Moïse’s newest book is Haiti Glass. Her play Expatriate, in which she also performed, launched Off-Broadway in 2008.

Click here to register

Octavio Paz Centennial Celebration

Poet, essayist, diplomat, and Nobelist Octavio Paz (1914-1998) believed that “to acknowledge the variety of visions and sensibilities is to preserve the richness of life” and ushered in a new era for Mexican literature and modern poetry. A gathering of Mexican and American poets read from his work, which spans 60 years of writing. Click here to listen to translator Eliot Weinberger reading Paz's poem "Sunstone," recorded at Poets House.

Mutants & Hybrids: Mixing Genres with Eleni Sikelianos

Our earliest writers combined forms naturally: Herodotus wrote stories about what he saw or heard and called it history; Sappho wrote songs we call poetry. In this talk, Eleni Sikelianos, poet and memoirist, whose newest book is the mixed-genre You Animal Machine (The Golden Greek), discusses how she and other writers are reviving the flow of genetic material between forms to reflect our complicated minds and lives.

Literary Partners Program: Mayapple Press Poetry Reading

Please join Mayapple Press for an afternoon of thrilling readings from their recently-published books.

Readers include:
Susana H. Case
Toni Mergentime Levi
Eleanor Lerman
Judith Kerman

Booksale to follow.

About the poets:

2014: Song of the Reed: The Poetry of Rumi (Full Audio)

Thirteenth-century Persian poet Rumi is now the most popular poet in the United States. In this event recorded at the AWP Conference & Bookfair in Seattle, Washington, biographer Brad Gooch shares research into Rumi’s lived experience, poet Anne Waldman reflects on Rumi’s contribution to poetry’s ecstatic tradition, and leading Rumi interpreter Coleman Barks, reads his beloved versions of the Sufi poet’s verse.

2014: Showcase Reading Series: Cathy Linh Che, Mark Wunderlich, Harmony Holiday, and Yusef Komunyakaa (Full Audio)

Poets Cathy Linh Che (Split, Alice James Books), Mark Wunderlich (The Earth Avails, Graywolf Press), Harmony Holiday (Go Find Your Father/A Famous Blues, Ricochet Editions), and Yusef Komunyakaa (Testimony: A Tribute to Charlie Parker, Wesleyan University Press) read as part of the Showcase Reading Series, featuring leading and emerging poets with books in this year's

Literary Partners Program: Women Poets Respond to Climate Crisis

Daniela Gioseffi (Editor/Publisher at, hosts a night of readings honoring the work of women poets.

Featured Readers include:
Alicia Ostriker
Nancy Mercado
Vivian Demuth
Peggy Ann Tartt

Open mic to follow; all are welcome to sign up at 6:45. Please bring your favorite eco-poem by a woman and one of your own to read.

Light refreshments will be served.

2014: July 30 Showcase Reading Series (Part 2): Lenelle Moïse and Spencer Reece

Poets Lenelle Moïse (Haiti Glass, City Lights), and Spencer Reece (The Road to Emmaus, Farrar, Straus and Giroux) read as part of the Showcase Reading Series, featuring leading and emerging poets with books in this year's Poets House Showcase.


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