“kitchenette building” by Gwendolyn Brooks

Yes, I’m very late, and this time, I missed a special occasion: last Wednesday was the 100th anniversary of the birth of Gwendolyn Brooks. I had been taught Brooks’s poetry since elementary school, but it’s only just recently that I’ve really begun to appreciate her and her work. One of my favorites from her isContinue reading ““kitchenette building” by Gwendolyn Brooks”

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“Postscript” by Seamus Heaney

Here at BGA, we’re in the habit of celebrating the birthdays of dead authors. And while I’m sure that Samuel Beckett (110 today) and Eudora Welty (107) are both worthy objects of such admiration, this April 13 is going to be spent on Seamus Heaney and his exquisite poem “Postscript.” In some ways, this poemContinue reading ““Postscript” by Seamus Heaney”

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And a Happy Birthday to John Donne

Today is the 444th birthday of John Donne, who—sharing the title with Seamus Heaney and W. B. Yeats—is my favorite poet. And while I could talk about my love of “Holy Sonnet XIV” or what a shame it is that more of The Oxford Book of English Verse isn’t devoted to Donne’s work, I thinkContinue reading “And a Happy Birthday to John Donne”

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Poem of the Week: “La Belle Dame sans Merci”

Today, October 31, happens to be the 220th birthday of one of the most celebrated poets in English literature, Mr. John Keats. So today, I post one of my favorite poems of his: “La Belle Dame sans Merci” by John Keats O what can ail thee, knight-at-arms, Alone and palely loitering? The sedge has witheredContinue reading “Poem of the Week: “La Belle Dame sans Merci””

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Poem of the Week: “If Only We Had Taller Been”

In honor of the ninety-fifth birthday of the wonderful, beautiful, talented, exuberant, incandescent Ray Bradbury, I’m posting this video of him reciting his poem “If Only We Had Taller Been.” How fortunate that his birthday would fall on a Saturday. 🙂

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Poem of the Week: “Adam’s Curse”

In honor of Yeats’s 150th birthday, which happens to be today: “Adam’s Curse” by William Butler Yeats We sat together at one summer’s end, That beautiful mild woman, your close friend, And you and I, and talked of poetry. I said, ‘A line will take us hours maybe; Yet if it does not seem aContinue reading “Poem of the Week: “Adam’s Curse””

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A Small Smattering of Shakespeare

The rest of the internet celebrated Shakespeare’s birthday a few days ago, but I had been told that Shakespeare was born on April 26. Apparently, the exact day of Shakespeare’s birth is unknown, but the day of his christening–April 26–is. So, I choose to mark the Bard’s birthday today, but really, any day is goodContinue reading “A Small Smattering of Shakespeare”

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Happy Birthday, Auden

I realized yesterday that today is February 21, the birthday of my favorite poet, W. H. Auden (I know it’s silly to mark the birthdays of dead people, but I like to do it anyway.). Since I’ve been wanting to write something about Auden for a while now, I figured today would be the perfectContinue reading “Happy Birthday, Auden”

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6 Interesting Things about C. S. Lewis (for His Birthday)

In honor of the father of Narnia on his 116th, birthday, here are six things you might not have known about ol’ Jack. 1: He Wrote All of His Books by Hand Lewis despised typewriters. He liked to give his prose an almost musical rhythm, like poetry. The noise of the typewriters, he said, madeContinue reading “6 Interesting Things about C. S. Lewis (for His Birthday)”

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Ray Bradbury Is the Coolest

Rejoice, book geeks! It’s the birthday of one of my favorite authors, Ray Bradbury! It’s a shame, I know, but I never really paid attention to Bradbury until I began seeing his obituary on the internet. I was never a big sci-fi fan (I’m still not a big sci-fi fan), so I never saw anyContinue reading “Ray Bradbury Is the Coolest”

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Happy Birthday, George Orwell!

Well a happy 111th birthday to everyone’s favorite sci-fi prophet, Eric Arthur Blair! (You know him  by his pen name, George Orwell.) This time last year, a pair of enterprising artists in the Netherlands came up with a creative way to mark Orwell’s birthday: they put a party hat on each of the surveillance camerasContinue reading “Happy Birthday, George Orwell!”

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