Poetry 180: 10 New Poems to Celebrate!

Last month, high schools around the nation settled in to start the second half of the academic year. We’re a little late to the celebration, but we hope you’ll still share our excitement: To mark this milestone, former Poet Laureate Billy Collins has added 10 new poems to Poetry 180! Launched in 2002 as Collins’ laureateship project, […]

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. […]

The Bread, the Knife, and the Source of Billy Collins’s Poem “Litany”

As the poetry specialist in the Library’s Researcher and Reference Services Division, I receive my fair share of questions about U.S. poets laureate. Most often, people ask about the history of the laureateship, or about the activities of a particular laureate during his or her term. Very rarely, though, do I receive questions about specific […]

Pairing Poems with Fiction and Biography

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. As a former English teacher and current librarian, I am invested in my students accessing a variety of reading materials. I have found that students, […]

Literary Treasures: Adrienne Rich reading her poems in the Coolidge Auditorium, April 7, 1981

The following post is part of our monthly series, “Literary Treasures,” which highlights audio and video recordings drawn from the Library’s extensive online collections, including the Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature. By showcasing the works and thoughts of some of the greatest poets and writers from the past 75 years, the series advances the […]

Poems of Spring Featured in Library’s Spring Fling Pop-Up Exhibit

This Friday and Saturday, April 13-14, the Library will continue its celebration of spring and the National Cherry Blossom Festival through its Spring Fling Pop-Up Exhibit. Among the many items on display from the Library’s collections is a selection of books and broadsides (see image above) from the Library’s Rare Book and Special Collections Division […]