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Weekend America Series

Poetry Radio Project

William Carlos Williams wrote "It is difficult to get the news from poems yet men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there." Weekend America sought to bring the insight of poets and poetry to its coverage of news and cultural events across the country through the Poetry Radio Project, a collaboration between the Poetry Foundation and American Public Media that stretches across several APM programs. The project is an effort to use poetry to inform, contextualize and enrich our programming and listeners’ lives. Hear what poets had to say about the Iraq war, the election of President Barack Obama, holiday parties, Saturday morning cartoons and more.


  • Conversations with America: Brian Turner

    Brian Turner

    The party platforms of the presidential candidates represent the direction a whole group of people want to steer our government. But maybe here on the weekend there's a way to think more broadly about some of the issues facing our country. So we've asked some writers and thinkers what they believe should be on voters' minds as they cast their ballots. Our essay today comes from Iraq war veteran and poet Brian Turner.

  • Cartoons and Poetry

    Billy Collins

    As a kid, Saturday morning meant one thing: cartoons. You'd wake up early, maybe pour yourself a bowl of cereal, turn on the tube, and get lost in a universe of the implausible. Billy Collins remembers. His Saturday mornings were flooded with the Looney Toons characters of Warner Brothers. Before he was twice appointed U.S. Poet Laureate, before he'd won awards and written volumes of poetry, Billy Collins was just a boy sitting in front of a black-and-white TV.

  • Summer Cottages

    Poet Cornelius Eady

    This weekend, lots of folks are saying goodbye to their summer homes, at least until next year. Boats are coming out of the water, beach blankets are heading for the closet. Poet Cornelius Eady and his wife, graphic designer and writer Sarah Micklem, won't be doing either one of those things.

  • Scarred for Life

    Karen Williams at age 7.

    Karen Williams had the chicken pox when she was seven years old. The case wasn't severe, but her body was left covered with unusual scars, called keloids, that often form on African-American skin. These days, Karen doesn't pay much heed to her scars, but other people do.

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