Final Podcast Episode: Making “American Conversations” in Kentucky

We hope you’ve enjoyed exploring the origins of Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith’s “American Conversations” project with us on the From the Catbird Seat podcast these past few weeks. Today’s announcement is bittersweet: The third and final episode of our “Making ‘American Conversations’” series is now online. You can listen and subscribe via our podcast page, iTunes, […]

On the Podcast: Making “American Conversations” in South Carolina

Good news for your ears: Episode two of the “Making ‘American Conversations’” series on our From the Catbird Seat podcast is now online! Tune in and subscribe via our podcast page, iTunes, or the podcasting app you prefer. On this episode, you’ll learn more about the origins of Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith’s “American Conversations” project through […]

Poetry of the City

The following guest post, part of our “Teacher’s Corner” series, is by Rebecca Newland, a Fairfax County Public Schools Librarian and former Teacher in Residence at the Library of Congress. The students I work with live in one of the most densely populated, bustling, suburban areas in the United States: Northern Virginia, just outside Washington, […]

New Podcast Episode on Making “American Conversations” Launches Today!

To say that it’s been a busy year for Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith would be an understatement. Just last month she concluded her second-term project, “American Conversations: Celebrating Poems in Rural Communities,” with a visit to southern Louisiana—her fourth state visit since August. We hope you’ve been following along on the blog and on […]

On National Handwriting Day, a Look at Poems Submitted to Left-Handed Penmanship Contests by Civil War Veterans

Today is National Handwriting Day! While many of the Library’s digital manuscript collections offer wonderful examples of 18th, 19th, and 20th century handwriting for you to peruse, our Wm. Oland Bourne Papers is the only collection of which I’m aware that offers a direct focus on penmanship, with a healthy offering of poetry to boot. […]

“How Odd it is that Your Brain Follows You”: An Interview with Ada Limón

The following is a guest post by Anastasia Nikolis, poetry editor of our online Interview Series, introducing the newest addition to the series: an interview with Ada Limón. On Tuesday, January 29, Ada Limón will discuss her work with Ron Charles, book critic at The Washington Post, as part of the Life of Poet series at the Hill Center at […]

Mary Oliver’s Wild and Precious Life

Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon? Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?                            -From “The Summer Day“ Poetry lovers around the country were saddened to learn of Mary Oliver’s death yesterday. Oliver was one of the most popular American poets of the past […]

“American Conversations” in Louisiana

The following guest post is by Guy Lamolinara, communications officer in the Center for the Book at the Library of Congress. This post accompanies online content just added to the “American Conversations” website for Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith’s visit to Louisiana from December 14-15, 2018.  Louisiana was the final stop in the “American Conversations” project […]

“The Slowdown” is on the Airwaves, Coast to Coast!

Today is a landmark day for the laureateship and the library. Tracy K. Smith’s show “The Slowdown,” a podcast launched last November, is now a radio show broadcast around the country! Here’s a press release with some stations that have picked up the show—check your local NPR station to see if they’ve opted to offer […]