Poetry 180: New Poems for the Start of the School Year

As schools around the country ring in a new academic year, we’re excited to announce that former Poet Laureate Billy Collins has added five new poems to Poetry 180!

If you’re new to Poetry 180, here’s a little background: Billy Collins launched Poetry 180 as his signature poet laureate project in 2002, with the goal to give high school students a chance to listen to or read a poem on each of the 180 days of the school year. “Listening to poetry can encourage students and other learners to become members of the circle of readers for whom poetry is a vital source of pleasure. I hope Poetry 180 becomes an important and enriching part of the school day,” Collins said about the project’s aim.

Without further ado, here are the five new additions for the first half of the school year:

Enjoy these new poems, and remember to share Poetry 180 with all the poetry lovers in your life.

Keep up with Poetry 180 by subscribing to our daily e-mail blast or RSS feed. To learn more about the project, visit the Poetry 180 website.

Just Announced: Schedule of Programs for 2021 National Book Festival

The Library of Congress has just announced the author lineup and schedule of programs for the 2021 National Book Festival! The 10-day festival, taking place Sept. 17-26, features more than 100 authors, poets and writers in a range of formats — all celebrating the festival theme, “Open a Book, Open the World.”

A Long Day Coming: Happy Juneteenth

In commemoration of Juneteenth, Manuscript Division curator Barbara Bair explores Ralph Ellison’s unfinished second novel, which was not published until after his 1994 death. The resulting novel, “Juneteenth,” reflects Ellison’s deep thinking about the rifts in American society—the dissonance, melodies and harmonies, and the strife of racial prejudice and discrimination. Like Ellison’s novel, the idea of Juneteenth as a national holiday has been a long time coming.