This week's show celebrates National Poetry Month, and the format is a little different from our norm.
Instead of an interview, this week's radio broadcast of Write The Book consisted of a montage of poetry and music. I contacted past guests who are poets and asked that each send me a poem and the name of a favorite poetic song. You can hear the poems on this week's podcast. (All poems are read with permission.) Unfortunately, I can't put the musical selections up on the podcast, due to licensing concerns, and so this recording is different from the show I aired on the Radiator yesterday. But the songs are listed below, as are the poets' names and the works they submitted for the broadcast. Click on each poet's name to follow a link where you can learn more about her or him.
So here they are: each poet, that person's poem, the chosen song, and the composer's name.
1. Natasha Saje, "Knell," Bird On The Wire, Leonard Cohen
2. David Budbill, "Sweet Early Spring," It Might as Well Be Spring, Stan Getz and Astrud Gilberto
3. Charles Harper Webb, "The Open-Air Recital Survived A Shaky Start," I Am The Walrus, The Beatles
The poem from the book Shadow Ball: New and Selected Poems, by Charles Harper Webb, © 2009, is aired/posted by permission of the University of Pittsburgh Press.
4. David Jauss, "The Hatchet," Round Midnight, Thelonious Monk
5. Jody Gladding, "Vernal Pool," Dark Was The Night-Cold Was The Ground, Blind Willie Johnson
"Vernal Pool," by Jody Gladding, excerpted from Rooms and Their Airs (Minneapolis: Milkweed Editions, 2009). Copyright © 2009 by Jody Gladding. Read with permission from Milkweed Editions.
6. Leslie Ullman, "Agape II," Muskerraren Balsa & La Balso de Combourscuro, Kepa Junkera
7. Clare Rossini, "The Subterrestial," The Mooch, Duke Ellington
8. David Huddle, "Hilltop Sonnet," Tom Ames' Prayer, Steve Earl
9. Charles Barasch, "40th High School Reunion," The Way You Do the Things You Do, The Temptations
10. Sydney Lea, "Small Jeremiad," That Old Feeling, Gerry Mulligan and Stan Getz
11. Shelagh Shapiro, Nope, I'm not a poet. (Or if I am, I don't know it! Sorry ... corny joke.) I closed out the show with my own poetic song choice, a long-time favorite: Last Chance Texaco, Rickie Lee Jones
I wish I could present the whole show here as it was heard on the radio; I had a great time putting it together. If you have any of these songs in your personal collection, pull them out and have a listen. Or you could always buy them from your favorite Indie music store! For now, though, maybe just click "Play," below, and listen to the poems. If you open your heart and close your eyes, you might just hear the music anyway.
The Write The Book Prompt for this week is simply to listen for the poetry in music. Whether it be the music you choose to put on at home, music that you yourself might make, music that you hear on Church Street as the weather improves, music in elevators. Even music you don't like very much might have one single chord change that moves you. Listen well, and write.
I think everyone has a different opinion.