Take this poem

Episode 68: In the Waiting Room

"But I felt: you are an I,
you are an Elizabeth,
you are one of them."


This poem is a story...in which a hot waiting room and a National Geographic magazine provoke a little girl's painful recognition of herself. 


"In The Waiting Room" by Elizabeth Bishop

Episode 67: Lake, Mountain, Moon

Keith Hansen brings us Denise Levertov's grouping of poems titled "Lake, Mountain, Moon." These are lush, grand, and worth listening to with closed eyes and a still body...if you can pull that off. 

Episode 66: Caterpillars & Geckos

You know what's adorable? Hearing your dear ol' college roommate's voice echo in the voices of her two young sons... and to hear those voices saying poems. Lincoln (8) shares a poem by Rosetti, and Will (10) shares a poem of his very own. He said his favorite thing about poetry is that there is a poem for everything... and ain't that the truth. 



by Christina Rosetti 

Brown and furry
Caterpillar in a hurry,
Take your walk
To the shady leaf, or stalk,
Or what not,
Which may be the chosen spot.
No toad spy you,
Hovering bird of prey pass by you;
Spin and die,
To live again a butterfly.

Episode 65: ”Miracle On St. David’s Day”

I hope my Welsh listeners won't give me too much trouble over the fact that St. David's Day is long past... better late, eh?

This is a rich episode from Keith Hansen! He brings us "Miracle On St. David's Day" by Gillian Clarke, which beautifully reflects on the power of memorized poetry. Keith also shares Malcome Guite's remarks on the poem, and throws in Wordsworth's  dreamy "Daffodils" as a bonus! ENJOY!


Gillian Clarke's Poem


Wordsworth's poem:


Episode 64: Do Horses Love Us?

Humans and horses: a mythic combination. These two poems dig around in that a little bit, helping me ponder what people are really talking about when they talk about horses. 

"Of Unsent Letters, One" by Jill Ossier, from her collection The Solace is Not the Lullaby

"A Blessing" by James Wright 

Episode 63: Work, And What It Is

You know by now that poets can turn their eyes and pens to the ordinary as well as the sublime... but how many poems have you read about WORK? Keith Hansen brings us three of those today.

I'm a little jealous that Keith beat me to sharing "What Work Is" by Philip Levine. That one's a mysterious gem. 


Clemens Starck "Slab on Grade"

Philip Levine "What Work Is"

Marge Piercy "To Be Of Use" 


Episode 62: ”Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden

I can't believe I didn't share this poem with you last year. Sorry about that! But here it is, before winter officially ends. 

The link to the audio poetry collection I mention: https://www.powells.com/book/-9780738934433/

And here is a recording of Robert Hayden reading his own poem:


Episode 61: It Could Be Otherwise

Do the inscrutable troubles of the future add to your pleasure now?

These two poems were on my mind as I revived from the stupor of illness. 

"True Love" by Sharon Olds

"Otherwise" by Jane Kenyon 

Episode 60: Happy Valentine’s Day

Keith Hansen is saving Take This Poem's proverbial bacon lately! I haven't been well enough to drag myself to the mic these last few weeks... and yet thanks to Keith here we are with a Valentine's Day treat.

He shares three poems about three different chapters of love. 

"How It Will End" by Denise Duhamel

"After the Argument" by Stephen Dunn

"The Wild Rose" by Wendell Berry 

If this episode leaves you hungry for more, you might enjoy revisiting one of these deep cuts:

Two Love Poems from the Middle 


Let's Get Romantic


Lost Love in Medieval Ireland



Episode 59: Two Caged Birds

Keith Hansen leads us through a closer reading of two rich poems.

"The Caged Skylark" by Gerard Manley Hopkins

"The Caged Goldfinch" by Thomas Hardy 

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