Revisit the works of two formative Victorian voices and tour one of New York City's magnificent 19th century estates, Wave Hill, which once played host to the likes of Charles Darwin and Queen Victoria.
1:00-1:30pm: Thomas Devaney shares selections from Poe's penumbral verse and offers highlights from the popular "Empty House" tour at the Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site.
Friday, October 5, 7:00pm-10:00pm
Saturday, October 6, 12:00noon-5:00pm
Leading British poet Simon Armitage offers you the chance to step outside of the American poetic paradigm, while asking some central questions that transcend all national boundaries: How do poems work? What do they hope to achieve? The workshop will include close readings of recent poetry from both sides of the pond and the opportunity to put these ideas into practice with focused writing exercises.
June Jordan dedicated her book, Passion, "to everybody scared as I used to be," writing, as she says of Whitman, for the sake of a people's poetry. Here is a look at the poetry and prose—spanning half a century—of a writer whose passionate, politically engaged poems and commitment to write out of her own "civil wars," makes her a poet someone once called "a lyric catalyst for change."
A joint initiative with the Poetry Society of America, Branching Out: Poetry for the 21st Century is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
In his talk, Carl Phillips will explore the ways in which Whitman is among the first to stake out forbidden territory (race, masculinity, morality) for American poetry and to find a form that persuasively enacts the poem's content. He will also consider the ways in which Whitman's poems continue to have a contemporary resonance and to illustrate what it has meant and continues to mean, on so many levels, to be American, for better and for worse.
Who were the Beat Poets? Why are they "beat" and what does that mean? A look at their work, and the decades of the fifties and sixties in which they wrote, will explain why they remain iconic figures in American poetry. Their writing was shocking to some yet celebrated by others. Contemporary reaction to their poems was vociferous and divided. Today they continue to be notorious, though there is growing interest in their lively, noisy, exciting work. The Beat goes on!
Maxine Kumin, whose meticulous observations of nature and human nature have been compared with Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Frost, will offer her perspective on all things poetical and political in conversation with poets Sharon Olds and Karen Swenson.
Funded by the New York Council for the Humanities, a state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities
Steps away from the future home of Poets House, an impressive array of poets from across the country converge to celebrate the arrival of summer, with words and music resounding over the Hudson River at sunset.
What are Langston's lessons? An examination of the work of Langston Hughes will help you learn more about America. It will help you explore the tough tapestry of race. His work will make you look into the mirror and see yourself. Are you ready? Who was this man who taught us how to dream? The life and work of Langston Hughes echoes the social transformation of America from the 1920s to the early 1960s. How did he put blues and jazz into his words? What was his secret? Come dance with the dreamer and discover how he changed literature.