Human Voices Wake Us

Human Voices Wake Us

The poem says, "Human voices wake us, and we drown." But I’ve made this podcast with the belief that human voices are what we need. And so, whether from a year or three thousand years ago, whether poetry or prose, whether fiction or diary or biography, here are the best things we have ever thought, written, or said. Support this podcast: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/support read less
ArtsArts

Episodes

Anthology: Poems on Modern Life (new episode)
6d ago
Anthology: Poems on Modern Life (new episode)
An episode from 4/17/24: Tonight, I read a handful of poems on modern life—whatever “modern” might mean in words spanning the seventeenth to the twentieth centuries. In many of the poems we hear the complaint of every age, that “the world has never been so bad.” In others, descriptions of the suburbs are enough, or of car culture, or of how we get our news or even begin to live with stories of atrocity and war. Some poems ask us to pay attention to the work and details of everyday life, others wonder if we shouldn’t look to past poets for wisdom and guidance. If a “modern” mindset means anything, it seems to mean proliferation and flux, a sense of not being settled. The poems I read are: Lawrence Ferlinghetti (1919-2021), “In Goya’s greatest scenes”Kathleen Jamie (1962- ), “The Way We Live”Laurie Sheck (1953- ), “Headlights”Derek Mahon (1941-2020), “A Disused Shed in Co. Wexford”Ted Kooser (1939- ), “Late February”Philip Larkin (1922-1985), “Here” Robinson Jeffers (1887-1962), “New Mexican Mountain”T. E. Hulme (1883-1917), “Image”Edgar Lee Masters (1868-1950), “Editor Whedon”Walt Whitman (1819-1892), “The blab of the pave”William Wordsworth (1770-1850), “London 1802”Mary Robinson (1758-1800), “A London Summer Morning”Jonathan Swift (1667-1745), “A Description of the Morning” William Shakespeare (1564-1616), “The queen, my lord, is dead”R. S. Thomas (1913-2000), “Suddenly” You can support Human Voices Wake Us here, or by ordering any of my books: Notes from the Grid, To the House of the Sun, The Lonely Young & the Lonely Old, and Bone Antler Stone. I’ve also edited a handful of books in the S4N Pocket Poems series. Email me at humanvoiceswakeus1@gmail.com. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/message Support this podcast: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/support
Anthology: Poetry Friday with The Great Year, Shakespeare, Eliot, Blake, Poems on Work & Poems on Mythology
15-09-2023
Anthology: Poetry Friday with The Great Year, Shakespeare, Eliot, Blake, Poems on Work & Poems on Mythology
An episode from 9/15/23: Earlier this year, I thought it was possible to supplement this podcast with one weekly (and shorter) additional reading over at Substack; for many reasons, that ambition proved impossible to maintain. Since an illness has kept me from recording a new episode this week, I thought it worthwhile collecting those six weeks of shorter readings here: 3 Poems from my long work-in-progress, The Great Year: “The Autumn Village,” “I was in Iceland centuries ago, ” “Smith Looks Up the Long Road”Two readings from Shakespeare: “Of comfort no man speak” (Richard II, act II scene 2), “All the world’s a stage” (As You Like It, act II scene 7)3 Poems on Work: Philip Levine (1928-2015): “Among Children,” Elma Mitchell (1919-2000), “Thoughts After Ruskin," Mary Robinson (1758-1800), “A London Summer Morning”Favorites from T. S. Eliot’s Four QuartetsThree Poets & Mythology: Eavan Boland (1944-2020), “The Making of an Irish Goddess," Michael Longley (b. 1939) “The Butchers," Robert Pinsky (b. 1940), “The Figured Wheel”Blake & His Animals: Three passages from William Blake (1757-1827): one from Visions of the Daughters of Albion and the last two from Milton. I hope that plucking these three passages from his longer work can suggest how varied—not just how prophetic and opaque, but simply beautiful—so much of his poetry can be. Don’t forget to support Human Voices Wake Us on Substack, where you can also get our newsletter and other extras. You can also support the podcast by ordering any of my books: Notes from the Grid, To the House of the Sun, The Lonely Young & the Lonely Old, and Bone Antler Stone. Any comments, or suggestions for readings I should make in later episodes, can be emailed to humanvoiceswakeus1@gmail.com. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/message Support this podcast: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/support
Caravaggio's Severed Heads / Herodotus Among the Scythians / Ian McKellen on Macbeth
08-09-2023
Caravaggio's Severed Heads / Herodotus Among the Scythians / Ian McKellen on Macbeth
An episode from 9/8/23: In the first part of tonight's episode, I read from Peter Robb's M, a biography of the painter Caravaggio (1571-1610). Through a discussion of two of his paintings which depict decapitation, we can understand how, in Caravaggio's early career, he was able to paint directly from life; but when he went on the run to escape a charge of murder, he depended instead upon his memory. In the second part, I read from the father of history, Herodotus (c. 484-c. 425 BCE), and his description of royal the burial rites of the "barbarian" Scythians, who lived in the area of the Black Sea. The translation and essays I read are from the Landmark Herodotus, edited by Robert B. Strassler. In the last part, I play a section of a talk given by Ian McKellen on the "Tomorrow and tomorrow" speech from Macbeth. You can find the clip on YouTube here. Don’t forget to support Human Voices Wake Us on Substack, where you can also get our newsletter and other extras. You can also support the podcast by ordering any of my books: Notes from the Grid, To the House of the Sun, The Lonely Young & the Lonely Old, and Bone Antler Stone. Any comments, or suggestions for readings I should make in later episodes, can be emailed to humanvoiceswakeus1@gmail.com. --- Send in a voice message: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/message Support this podcast: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/humanvoiceswakeus/support