Tag: Poetry and Poets

‘Huddled Masses’ in Statue of Liberty Poem Are European, Trump Official Says

Kenneth T. Cuccinelli II, one of the Trump administration’s top immigration officials, set off a controversy this week with comments about “The New Colossus,” the 136-year-old sonnet at the base of the Statue of Liberty. “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,” reads the poem, by Emma Lazarus. But […]

Read More

What the Trump Administration Gets Wrong About the Statue of Liberty

It has happened again. August rolls around and a new, harsher set of immigration restrictions emerges from the White House. Two years ago, President Trump’s senior adviser Stephen Miller rolled out the points-based RAISE Act, which would reduce legal immigration by as much as 50 percent over a decade. Two days ago, the acting Citizenship […]

Read More

From the Country’s New Poet Laureate, Poems Reclaiming Tribal Culture

AN AMERICAN SUNRISEPoemsBy Joy Harjo In June, after decades as a significant presence for poetry readers, Joy Harjo was named United States poet laureate. A member of the Muscogee Creek Nation, she’s the first indigenous poet to hold the post. This is overdue, and political: a reminder to those who view America as a white […]

Read More

Maya Angelou, Reimagined Through Art

More than two dozen artists honored the poet, artist and activist with murals at the Los Angeles high school that bears her name. Our photographer captured the works being created. By Carlos Gonzalez and Amanda Svachula A Shepard Fairey mural of Maya Angelou, mid-laugh in the sunshine, now sweeps across an exterior wall of a […]

Read More

Marie Ponsot, Prolific Poet of Love, Divorce and Family, Dies at 98

After a promising start as a published poet in the 1950s, Marie Ponsot put her career aside. She was a single mother in New York City, with seven children to raise. But she did not stop writing. She filled notebooks with her poems — and then stashed much of her work in a drawer, showing […]

Read More

Writing With Your Eyes Closed

Joel Burcat’s debut novel, “Drink to Every Beast,” isn’t climbing best-seller lists or getting attention from prominent critics. But it’s remarkable for a different reason. He finished it after he became legally blind. An environmental lawyer in Harrisburg, Pa., Burcat, 64, had been writing in his spare time for many years and had cranked out […]

Read More

‘The Real Debate Is Will They All Fit on a Stage? Dems a Lot of Folks’

As pundits prepped to dissect the first debate of the 2020 election, Jason O. Gilbert, a comedy writer, poked fun at the pageant with a haiku roast of the Democratic candidates. The Opinion staff offered a challenge to readers: “Think you can do better?” The result was a mix of haikus and other wordplay — […]

Read More

Joy Harjo Is Named U.S. Poet Laureate

Joy Harjo started writing as a college student in New Mexico in the early 1970s, during what she described as “the beginning of a multicultural literary movement.” At gatherings around the Southwest, she began meeting poets, including Native American ones. Hearing them perform made her realize that poetry was available to everyone, including her. “It […]

Read More

Black Bodies, Green Spaces

“Black people — we need a better publicist,” the comedian Wanda Sykes declares in her new Netflix special, “Not Normal.” Ms. Sykes has just told the story of a black security guard in Chicago who apprehended a gunman and then was himself shot by the police. Her solution for changing the perception of African-Americans as […]

Read More

Why Isn’t Instagram More Witty?

This should be the golden age of the aphorism. Constrained as we all are by time, attention and social media platform character limits, when we pull out our smartphones and stare into their illuminated fields, we can take in only so much. Shouldn’t those words be perfectly chosen to vibrate with hidden meanings? An aphorism […]

Read More

The Cautionary Tale of the ‘Female Byron’

We tend to think of women poets of the 19th century as unworldly creatures: Emily Dickinson, all in white, running away at the sight of strangers, or the equally reclusive Emily Brontë, writing out her poems in microscopic handwriting in tiny private notebooks. Neither wrote poetry for money or even with an eye to publication. […]

Read More

On Walt Whitman’s Big Birthday, 10 Glorious Relics

“I am large, I contain multitudes,” Walt Whitman wrote in “Song of Myself.” And these days, New York includes an unusually large and varied amount of its most celebrated literary son. The bicentennial of his birth on May 31 is being celebrated with events around town, including a marathon reading of “Song of Myself” in […]

Read More

Eavesdropping on Ocean Vuong’s New Book

Before he sold his first novel, “On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous,” for a hefty advance, Ocean Vuong was writing poetry. Which means he was broke. Which means he was making $8 an hour cleaning toilets at a Panera Bread. If you worked your way to regional manager, you could make 60 grand a year. “That […]

Read More