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A tour of the Archive

with Andrew Motion

My short tour of the Poetry Archive is designed to show its range, as well as the strength-in-depth of its holdings. And also to demonstrate how the pleasures and meanings of poetry depend as much on...

A tour of the Archive

with Catherine Olver, Foyle Young Poet finalist

I think it's defensible to say that there's something about any poem worth the title that asks to be read aloud. Perhaps it's to do with the origin of poetry, as part of oral traditions, or perhaps...

A tour of the Archive

with Chris Pearson, teacher

When choosing poems for my tour, I had just one criterion in mind: that each poem must allow me to comment on the quality of the spoken word (after all, that is what makes the Archive such a...

A tour of the Archive

with Clive James

The writer and broadcaster Clive James introduces a few of his favourite poems in the Poetry Archive.

A tour of the Archive

with Connie Ruzich, Professor of English Studies

As a university teacher who lives in an inland city surrounded by mountains, streams, and rivers, I sometimes have a longing for the ocean, to see and smell and hear its rhythms. When I don't have...

A tour of the Archive

with Danielle McShine, poet

The Poetry Archive is an invaluable resource for hearing some of my favourite poems, read by their authors, and for discovering new voices. I often wander through the Archive, stopping at a poem or...

A tour of the Archive

with David Almond, author

I love this archive. It's an important reminder that all literature has its roots in the human voice. Black print on white paper is not remote and abstract stuff but grows out from 'ordinary'...

A tour of the Archive

with Dr Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury

Poetry happens at a sort of junction in the mind when new combinations start up, words and pictures start connecting in unexpected ways. It takes you into what can feel like anarchic territory, and...

A tour of the Archive

with Frank Cottrell Boyce, children's author and film-maker

I had the great joy of being part of the creative team for the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Olympics - a multi-media extravaganza that was streamed, tweeted, favourited and blogged about across the...

A tour of the Archive

with Helen Gray, teacher

As a secondary schoolteacher in London for the past thirty years, it has been my privilege to have had a job which at its core, involves getting teenagers to fall in love with poetry. I have made my...

A tour of the Archive with Stephen Fry

Stephen Fry is a man of many talents: actor, novelist, comedian, librettist, thinker and wit. In an interview with...

Featured Guided Tours


Featured downloads

The Poetry Archive’s vision is to acquire and make recordings of contemporary English-language poets reading their own work, collect and preserve recordings of great poets from the past, and make extracts from all these recordings available free of charge.