Poetry Friday: Festival Video Online

Posted on by Dodge

Poetry Program Staff

Teachers often ask us how they can obtain copies of the video recordings shot at the Dodge Festival.  They know that listening to poets read and discuss their work is often the best way to break through students’ often negative assumptions about poetry: they discover it is a living art that speaks to and for them.

The long-term goal of the Dodge Poetry Archive Project is to host our entire catalogue of audio and video recordings on an interactive website.  Once complete, our website will make available to teachers, students and the general public the highest quality recordings of many of the most significant twentieth and twenty-first century poets, often in groupings that occurred in no other place or time.  Such a project will take years to complete.

In the meantime, we are very excited to announce that the Bill Moyers & Company website has made a treasure trove of recordings of readings and conversations from past Dodge Festivals available online. Here is one such treasure, Kurtis Lamkin performing his poem Jump Mama at the 1998 Festival:

Kurtis Lamkin reads ‘jump mama’ from BillMoyers.com on Vimeo.

We are very thankful for the generosity of Moyers & Company in making this content available for teachers, students and the general public at no cost.

We should warn you that there is so much rich material here, you might find yourself watching and listening for far longer than you’d planned.  It will be well worth it, we assure you.  So make yourself a cup of tea, or pour a glass of wine, and take it all in:

  • Poets in Performance features videos from Bill’s past and present shows on poetry, including those in coordination with the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival
  • Rita Dove compiled a list of Young Poets to Watch, several of whom have read at the Dodge Poetry Festival; Newark native Kyle Dargan is a frequent Dodge Poet in the Schools.

We hope you enjoy this resource as much as we do.  And, teachers, if you decide to use any of the clips in your classroom, let us know.  We’d love to hear about it.


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Continuing his long-running conversation with the American public, Bill Moyers returned to television in January 2012 with Moyers & Company, a weekly series of smart talk and new ideas aimed at helping viewers make sense of our tumultuous times through the insight of America’s strongest thinkers. Airing on public television and radio stations around the country, the series offers a forum to poets, writers and artists, scientists and philosophers, and leading scholars. The program also features Moyers’ hallmark essays on democracy. www.billmoyers.com

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