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The Carrying by Ada Limon

Year End Reads

As the official winter season gets closer, the weather slows things down and instills a heaviness that really makes us feel ourselves in our bodies. When we are not as frenetic, books are a great companion to the new (but cyclical) rhythm. It’s a vista from which to take stock, particularly with a new year on the horizon line. The books below offer characters or writers who are speaking to a centeredness, steadiness, or timeliness.

A Year in Rock Creek Park

DC's Wild, Wondrous Heart

Ecological, Historical & Poetic Explorations of Rock Creek Park

When many people think of our nation's capital, they focus on its political life. Yet residents here know our city environment encompasses much more than federal politics. At its heart lies my favorite area, Rock Creek Park. Over double the size of Central Park, it includes forests, streams, hills, fields, recreational and historical sites. Here residents and tourists can escape from urban stress, slow down, engage in recreation, and commune with nature.

DCC

Poetry Reading and Open Mic Competition

Open Mic Competition with E. Ethelbert Miller and Alan

Are you a poet? Come read at the open mic Saturday, April 14, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. for a chance to be selected as a finalist in the DC Poet Project.  Listen to poets E. Ethelbert Miller and Alan King read their work, and stay to read your own poetry or listen to other local poets read theirs. At the end, Mr. Miller and Mr. King will select one open mic reader as “the winner” and award a $100 dollar cash prize.  

DCC

Poetry Presentation with Regie Cabico

Poetry through the power of autobiography

In her poem, “Power,” Audre Lorde wrote,  "I am lost without imagery or magic  trying to make power  out of hatred and destruction."

Advice from 1 Disciple of Marx to 1 Heidegger Fanatic by Papasquiaro cover

Challenge Accepted: Read Harder 2017

Challenge #23: Read a collection of poetry in translation on a theme other than love

A new year means new year resolutions and challenges. One reading challenge that I love to do is Book Riot’s 2017 Read Harder challenge. Instead of having people focus on a specific number of books, Read Harder challenges people to read different genres or authors that they may overlook.

American Nations

What it Means to be American

This eclectic mix of books features different genres, perspectives, and approaches to answer the question: "What does it mean to be an American?" Some are memoirs, some are histories, some social science and poetry thrown in for good measure. While none of these books by themselves or even as a collection completely answer the complex question, they do begin to describe the multiple facets of what it means to call oneself an American.

A Broken Hallelujah

Honoring the late Leonard Cohen

In Writing, Film, and Song

Two of the greatest experiences of my life involved seeing Leonard Cohen, the late great Canadian singer and poet, perform live. While his body has left us, his spirit lives on through his decades of writing and song. Here are some recommendations of books and films by and about him to help understand and commemorate his legacy.  

Your Friday Five: Poetry Month

Celebrate Poetry Month with Books About Poets and Their Worlds

Poetry Month can be celebrated in a variety of ways. Yes, you can and should take the time to read and write poetry at any of the numerous events happening around the city. But what if you do that year round? Perhaps you would enjoy reading more about some of the famous poets of the past. Below are five books that showcase the men and women behind the poems and illustrate how the people, events, and world around these artists shaped them and their work.

"Citizen: An American Lyric" by Claudia Rankine

A Contemporary Celebration of National Poetry Month

Six books that show contemporary poetry's range

To celebrate National Poetry Month, I've compiled a brief list of six (roughly) contemporary books of poetry that help display the range of styles, content, and ambitions that poetry offers readers today. With more poets writing now than perhaps any preceding age, it's literally impossible to read and enjoy all that the last couple of years have produced, let alone the last few decades. But never fear! There are poems to satisfy just about any reading appetite, and the DC Public Library has an excellent collection to choose from.