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Library of Congress Poetry Resources

Poetry and Literature Center Web Pages

Robert Frost Robert Frost, half-length portrait, seated, facing left.
Photographic print.

Prints and Photographs Online Catalog.
Library of Congress.


The Library's Poetry and Literature Center web pages provide access to a wealth of poetry-related resources on the Library's website, and offer the best starting point for locating works by and about contemporary American poets on the site. Major features accessible through these pages are listed below.

Poetry and Literature Center Resources

National Projects of U.S. Poets Laureate

Several recent Poets Laureate have created national projects during their terms designed to increase the visibility and appreciation of poetry in the United States. These projects include:

La Casa de Colores

Through La Casa de Colores, Juan Felipe Herrera invites the public to contribute a verse to an "epic poem" about the American experience. The poem, titled "La Familia," unfolds monthly, with a new theme each month about an aspect of American life, values or culture. "El Jardín" ("The Garden"), the second major feature of Herrera's project, includes videos of Herrera's interaction with select items throughout the Library, along with his written responses to each interaction and curator comments.

Where Poetry Lives

"Where Poetry Lives" was founded in 2013 by Natasha Trethewey, who served as the 19th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry. Throughout her second term as Laureate, Trethewey participated in a series of reports with PBS NewsHour Senior Correspondent Jeffrey Brown, as part of the show's Poetry Series. These reports, in locations across the country, explored societal issues through poetry's focused lens.

Poetry for the Mind's Joy

Kay Ryan's Poetry for the Mind’s Joy project included a community college poetry contest administered by the Community College Humanities Association, and a video conference with four community colleges in April, 2010.

American Life in Poetry

Ted Kooser's American Life in Poetry provides newspapers and online publications with a free weekly column featuring contemporary American poems.

Poetry 180

A project created by Billy Collins to make it easy for high school students to hear or read a poem on each of the 180 days of the school year.

Favorite Poem Project

Robert Pinsky's Favorite Poem Project was designed for Americans to share their favorite poems. The Favorite Poem Project web site includes 50 short video documentaries showcasing individual Americans reading and speaking personally about poems they love.

Poetry Events

A schedule of upcoming poetry readings, lectures, and other events held at the Library.

Poetry Prizes

Learn about the Bobbitt National Prize for Poetry and Witter Bynner Fellowships. Lists of current and past recipients are included.

Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress

Learn the history behind the position of United States Poet Laureate. Brief biographies of the current Poet Laureate as well as former Poets Laureate are available.

About the Poetry & Literature Center

The Poetry & Literature Center is the home of the Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry at the Library of Congress. Read about its history and activities.

Archive of Recorded Poetry & Literature

Begun in 1943 when Allen Tate was Consultant in Poetry to the Library, the Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature now contains recordings of nearly 2,000 poets and writers reading and discussing their work. On April 15, 2015, a selection of recordings from the Library's Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature was made available online.. The initial launch included 50 recordings, featuring poets such as Robert Frost, Gwendolyn Brooks, Elizabeth Bishop, Czeslaw Milosz, and Paul Muldoon. Additional recordings are added on a monthly basis.

From the Catbird Seat: Poetry and Literatutre at the Library of Congress

The official blog of the Poetry and Literature Center.

Poetry of America

This series was launched is part of the Center’s 75th Anniversary celebration. Through two features, “Poetry of American Identity” and “Poetry of American History,” leaders in the literary field explore how poetry connects to the following themes: immigration and migration, work and industry, social change, and peace and war.

Spotlight on U.S. Hispanic Writers

This series features emerging and established American poets and prose writers of Hispanic descent who write predominantly in English. In each segment the featured poet or writer participates in a moderated discussion with a member of the Library'sHispanic Division and reads from his or her work.

Conversations with African Poets and Writers

Launched in the fall of 2011 with Ali Mazrui, who gave a talk on the state of contemporary African literature, this series (presented here as webcasts of past programs) has followed with readings/discussions with emerging and established novelists, poets, and short story writers from around the Continent.

Interview Series

As part of the Poetry and Literature Center’s 75th Anniversary, this new series features emerging and established literary writers in a dynamic and thought-provoking conversation.

Webcasts and Podcasts

Find video and audio recordings of poetry readings, literary birthday celebrations and conferences, and more that have taken place at the Library and at the National Book Festival.


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  March 16, 2022
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