Brain Pickings

Reads tagged with “poetry”

Against the Slippery Slope of Injustice: Amanda Palmer Reads Wendell Berry’s Stunningly Prescient Poem “Questionnaire”
Against the Slippery Slope of Injustice: Amanda Palmer Reads Wendell Berry’s Stunningly Prescient Poem “Questionnaire”

The road to moral hell is paved with gradual self-permission.

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Faster Than Light: Marilyn Nelson Reads Her Exquisite Poem About the Purpose of Life and How Our Impermanence Both Frustrates and Fuels Our Creative Drive
Faster Than Light: Marilyn Nelson Reads Her Exquisite Poem About the Purpose of Life and How Our Impermanence Both Frustrates and Fuels Our Creative Drive

“…a handful of dust trying to get back to supernova. Like every longing, everything alive.”

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The Universe in Verse: Cosmologist and Saxophonist Stephon Alexander Reads “Explaining Relativity” by Astronomer and Poet Rebecca Elson
The Universe in Verse: Cosmologist and Saxophonist Stephon Alexander Reads “Explaining Relativity” by Astronomer and Poet Rebecca Elson

“It is this, and the existence of limits.”

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Kahlil Gibran on Friendship and the Building Blocks of Meaningful Connection
Kahlil Gibran on Friendship and the Building Blocks of Meaningful Connection

“In the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.”

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Robinson Jeffers on Moral Beauty, the Interconnectedness of the Universe, and the Key to Peace of Mind
Robinson Jeffers on Moral Beauty, the Interconnectedness of the Universe, and the Key to Peace of Mind

“One may contribute (ever so slightly) to the beauty of things by making one’s own life and environment beautiful, so far as one’s power reaches. This includes moral beauty.”

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How to Punctuate with Style: Lewis Thomas’s Charming Meditation on the Subtleties of Language
How to Punctuate with Style: Lewis Thomas’s Charming Meditation on the Subtleties of Language

“If you want to use a cliché you must take full responsibility for it yourself and not try to fob it off on anon., or on society.”

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Poetic Symbology of the Heroine’s Journey: Artist Nancy Castille’s Stunning Homage to the Sumerian Proto-Feminist Goddess Inanna
Poetic Symbology of the Heroine’s Journey: Artist Nancy Castille’s Stunning Homage to the Sumerian Proto-Feminist Goddess Inanna

5,000-year-old poems celebrating female sexuality and empowerment, reimagined in a new symbolic language at the nexus of beauty, wonder, and wisdom.

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Keats on the Measure of Compassion
Keats on the Measure of Compassion

“The best of Men have but a portion of good in them — a kind of spiritual yeast in their frames which creates the ferment of existence — by which a Man is propell’d to act and strive and buffet with Circumstance.”

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The Everlasting Self: U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith’s Soulful Meditation on the Looping, Haunting Mystery of Being
The Everlasting Self: U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith’s Soulful Meditation on the Looping, Haunting Mystery of Being

“A collaborative condition: / Gathered, shed, spread, then / Forgotten, reabsorbed. Like love…”

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Astrophysicist Janna Levin Reads “When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer” by Walt Whitman
Astrophysicist Janna Levin Reads “When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer” by Walt Whitman

“Let your soul stand cool and composed before a million universes.”

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