Term 3 poet in residence

Michael Symmons Roberts

Viral poetry! By Michael Symmons Roberts
21 Nov 2007 - 04:32 PM

Where do you find the poems you read? I still get most of mine from books, but if you're looking for a single poem (especially a great poem from the past) it's almost certainly only a Google search away. Of course, this raises all kinds of issues of copyright and authorship, especially with more recent poetry, but it might be a way of opening up access to poems.

Poetry as Sound By Michael Symmons Roberts
12 Nov 2007 - 12:25 AM

I've just been browsing the Archive here, after watching the TV drama on Rudyard Kipling. Did you see it? About Kipling's efforts to send his young son Jack to fight in the First World War, and his grief and guilt when Jack was killed. Amazed to find not just Kipling in the Archive, but Browning and Belloc and Bunting. All these riches from the past - poets I knew on the page but hadn't heard.

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What should poets write about? By Michael Symmons Roberts
28 Oct 2007 - 11:58 AM

I was looking at WH Auden's poetry with some undergraduates the other day, and although they didn't know much of his work they all knew the poem from 'Twelve Songs' (better known as 'Funeral Blues' or 'Stop all the Clocks') from the film Four Weddings and a Funeral. Of course, being in a film helps to raise a poem's profile, but that alone doesn't explain it. The popular success of that poem was down to a combination of its beautiful simplicity and its subject. Most of us still seem to need poetry at weddings and funerals. Extracts from novels or plays don't seem to reach the heights and depths of love and loss.

4 comments latest by Michael
and hello again... By Michael Symmons Roberts
10 Oct 2007 - 09:34 PM

Sorry for the faltering start. Apparently, just moments (well perhaps hours) after my first post as resident poet the site froze and has only today been unfrozen. I'm like to think this was just coincidence, but if it freezes again after this one I'll begin to take it personally. Ah well... What are you reading? I'm in the middle of the new(ish) biography of John Donne at the moment, and also reading some Auden and some Paul Muldoon.

17 comments latest by Michael
Sound and Vision By Michael Symmons Roberts
24 Sep 2007 - 10:47 AM

Hello and welcome. This is the start of my virtual residency at the Poetry Archive, and I'm looking forward to our conversations. I thought I'd start this morning with a subject close to my (and the Poetry Archive's) heart. How important is the sound of a poem? How does that relate to its meaning? Is that sound & meaning only fully expressed by the poet's own voice? And where does all that leave the silent solitary reader and the words on a page? Can poetry readings diminish poems?

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