Brain Pickings

Reads tagged with “poetry”

Ode to Buttoning and Unbuttoning My Shirt: Poet Ross Gay’s Subtle, Stunning Meditation on Learning to Live and Learning to Die
Ode to Buttoning and Unbuttoning My Shirt: Poet Ross Gay’s Subtle, Stunning Meditation on Learning to Live and Learning to Die

In praise of practicing the inevitable through the improbable, the mundane moments when we are “as delicate as we can be in this life.”

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A Young Poet’s Love Letter to Earth and to the Double Courage of Facing a Broken Reality While Refusing to Cease Cherishing This Astonishing World in Its Brokenness
A Young Poet’s Love Letter to Earth and to the Double Courage of Facing a Broken Reality While Refusing to Cease Cherishing This Astonishing World in Its Brokenness

In praise of anemone and dust and “the smallest possible once before once.”

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A Poem for Peter: A Lyrical Illustrated Tribute to Ezra Jack Keats and the Making of the First Mainstream Children’s Book Starring a Black Child
A Poem for Peter: A Lyrical Illustrated Tribute to Ezra Jack Keats and the Making of the First Mainstream Children’s Book Starring a Black Child

“Brown-sugar boy in a blanket of white. Bright as the day you came onto the page. From the hand of a man whose life and times, and hardships, and heritage, and heroes, and heart, and soul led him to you.”

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Grammy Award-Winning Jazz Vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant Reads Audre Lorde’s Poignant Poem “The Bees”
Grammy Award-Winning Jazz Vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant Reads Audre Lorde’s Poignant Poem “The Bees”

A fierce anthem for the alternative to destruction.

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Ursa Major: Elizabeth Gilbert Reads a Poignant Forgotten Poem About the Big Dipper and Our Cosmic Humanity
Ursa Major: Elizabeth Gilbert Reads a Poignant Forgotten Poem About the Big Dipper and Our Cosmic Humanity

A two-verse love letter to the night sky fixture which “our eyes must lean out into time to catch, and die in seeing.”

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The Storm, the Rainbow, and the Soul: Coleridge on the Interplay of Terror and Transcendence in Nature and Human Nature
The Storm, the Rainbow, and the Soul: Coleridge on the Interplay of Terror and Transcendence in Nature and Human Nature

“In the hollow… I sate for a long while sheltered, as if I had been in my own study in which I am now writing: there I sate with a total feeling worshipping the power and ‘eternal link’ of energy.”

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Astronomy, Race, and the Unwitnessed Radiance Inside History’s Blind Spots
Astronomy, Race, and the Unwitnessed Radiance Inside History’s Blind Spots

A poetic instrument for observing and redrawing the spectrum of privilege and possibility.

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Beloved Writers on the Mightiest Antidote to Depression
Beloved Writers on the Mightiest Antidote to Depression

On the consolations of monarchs and of stars.

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Spell to Be Said against Hatred: Amanda Palmer Reads Poet Jane Hirshfield’s Miniature Masterwork of Insistence, Persistence, and Compassionate Courage
Spell to Be Said against Hatred: Amanda Palmer Reads Poet Jane Hirshfield’s Miniature Masterwork of Insistence, Persistence, and Compassionate Courage

“Until each breath refuses they, those, them…”

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Love Beyond Label: Lisel Mueller’s Tender Poem About the Lush, Unclassifiable Bond Between Johannes Brahms and Clara Schumann
Love Beyond Label: Lisel Mueller’s Tender Poem About the Lush, Unclassifiable Bond Between Johannes Brahms and Clara Schumann

A lovely antidote to “the rude, irrelevant question of our age,” the hollow assumption that “the event of two bodies meshing together establishes the degree of love.”

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