poem index

poems & poets

Search over 2,500 poet biographies, over 6,500 poems, as well as essays about poetry, and some of the most important books, anthologies, and textbooks about the art form ever written. To search by keyword, use the search bar above.

poems

poem
If you can keep your head when all about you
   Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
   But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
   Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or, being hated,
poem

The old man sitting out front
on the empty patio eating
fried chicken or something or other,
bought up the block probably, and not
from the house of sushi
we were entering,
didn’t inspire confidence exactly,
but when you returned
from the wall of fame to

poem
I heard a Fly buzz – when I died –  
The Stillness in the Room
Was like the Stillness in the Air –  
Between the Heaves of Storm – 

The Eyes around – had wrung them dry –  
And Breaths were gathering firm
For that last Onset – when the King
Be witnessed – in the Room –  

I willed my

texts

text
Schools & Movements
2014

"Sometimes referred to as 'the artistic sister of the Black Power Movement,' the Black Arts Movement stands as the single most controversial moment in the history of African-American literature—possibly in American literature as a whole. Although it fundamentally changed American attitudes both toward the function and meaning of literature as well as the place of ethnic literature in English departments, African-American scholars as prominent as Henry Louis Gates, Jr., have deemed it the 'shortest and least successful' movement in African American cultural history." —"Black Creativity: On the Cutting Edge," Time (Oct. 10, 1994)

With roots in the civil rights movement, Malcolm X and the Nation of Islam, and the Black Power movement, the Black Arts movement is usually dated from approximately 1960 to 1970. Both the Black Power and Black Arts movements were responses to the turbulent socio-political landscape of the time. As racial inequality prevailed and black leaders such as

text
Prize Citations
2004

James Tate was the winner of the second Wallace Stevens Award. The $100,000 award recognizes outstanding and proven mastery in the art of poetry. The judges for the 1995 Wallace Stevens Award were John Ashbery, Jorie Graham, and Charles Simic. John Ashbery wrote the following citation.

It seem especially appropriate that James Tate has won this year's Tanning Prize [Wallace Stevens Award]. Dorothea Tanning, who established the prize in 1994, was born in the Midwest and moved to Paris with her husband Max Ernst, one of the founders of the Surrealist movement in painting; Tanning's own paintings are Surrealist, sometimes dark and haunted, but also tinged with eroticism and a witty sensuality. Tate, born in Kansas City, landed in New England where he has developed a homegrown variety of Surrealism almost in his own backyard, which figures frequently in his poetry. Both Tanning and Tate refute the idea of Surrealism as something remote from daily experince, a hermetic art for a

text
Essays
2008

All the Beat Generation writers occupy a contested space in conversations about American literature. The creators and guardians of the modernist canon dismissed Beat writers such as Allen Ginsberg, Jack Kerouac, and William S. Burroughs as subliterary, mere popular culture icons, vacuous self-promoters, and even inciters of juvenile delinquency.

As Norman Podhoretz wrote in "The Know-Nothing Bohemians," his 1958 attack on the Beats in Partisan Review, "On the Road and The Subterraneans are so patently autobiographical in content that they become almost impossible to discuss as novels." Podheretz grants the Beats great, albeit negative, influence when he claims that "juvenile crime can be explained partly in terms of the same resentment against normal feeling and the attempt to cope with the world that lies behind Kerouac and Ginsberg." These attacks, along with the pop-culture image of the beatnik—as embodied by the iconic, goatee-wearing slacker Maynard G. Krebs—have

books