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The Favorite Poem Project

Robert PinksyRobert Pinsky
Photo by N. Alicia Byers.

The Favorite Poem Project was founded in 1997 by Robert Pinsky who served as the 8th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry at the Library of Congress. Pinsky established the project as a way to celebrate, document, and encourage a public appreciation of poetry as well as acknowledge the role of poetry in the everyday lives of Americans. The project called for Americans to share their favorite poems with the nation, and the response was overwhelming. Over 18,000 Americans from ages 5 to 97 shared their favorite poems.

The project culminated in videos, online resources, and an entire archive dedicated to Americans favorite poems, all of which can be found at: www.favoritepoem.org.

American Life in Poetry

Ted KooserTed Kooser
Photo ©Sarah Greene

American Life in Poetry was founded in 2004 by Ted Kooser, the 13th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry in order to create a space and a presence for poetry in American culture. As part of the project, Ted Kooser provided newspapers and online periodicals with a free weekly column that featured a poem from a contemporary American poet. Publications were able to register and to reprint the text in order to promote poets and to help their works read a wider, general audience.

For more information about the project, and for archives of previous columns, please visit: www.americanlifeinpoetry.com.

Poetry 180

Billy CollinsBilly Collins

Poetry 180 was founded by the 11th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry, Billy Collins, in order to promote poetry in schools. The program allows teachers and schools to print a poem every day for the 180 days of the school year to read and discuss with their students. Not only does it promote literacy, but it connects the Poet Laureate to an audience of young readers and introduces them to the world of contemporary poetry.

For more information, or to read the poem of the day, please visit: www.loc.gov/poetry/180.

Poetry for the Mind's Joy

Kay RyanKay Ryan
Photo from Houston’s
Outsmartmagazine.com.

Created by Kay Ryan, the 16th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry in 2008, this program was a national initiative to promote the hard work of the staffs and students in American community colleges. To this end, the Library sponsored a video conference with the Ryan and students from community colleges around the nation, as well as a poetry writing contest open to students of community colleges which were chosen at the campus level.

The webcast of the video conference as well as poems from the winners can be found at: www.loc.gov/poetry/mindsjoy.