Friday, May 6, 2022

Folger ENCORES: Poetry from Lucille Clifton





Folger Poetry Board Reader,
the poet Lucille Clifton


Click to play ENCORES video


Today we come together to hear the writing of the former Maryland Poet Laureate Lucille Clifton

The O.B. Hardison Poetry Series welcomed Lucille Clifton as the Folger Poetry Board Reader in 2008.

Lucille Clifton was discovered by Langston Hughes who published her poetry his anthology The Poetry of the Negro. Lucille’s work emphasized the endurance and strength of the Black experience and on family life. She has had two of her poetry books chosen as finalists for the Pulitzer Prize, Good Woman: Poems and a Memoir, 1969-1980 and Next: New Poems, and she won the National Book Award for Blessing the Boats: New and Selected Poems, 1988-2000. Critic Bruce Bennett, in the New York TimesBook Review, praised Lucille as a “passionate, mercurial writer, by turns angry, prophetic, compassionate, shrewd, sensuous, vulnerable and funny.” 

Alexia Clifton, Lucille’s daughter, joins us to introduce this ENCORES selection and offer us a glimpse into the poetry of her mother. 

We welcome you to experience the powerful honesty of the poetry of Lucille Clifton.

We hope you enjoy this and other ENCORES to come. Keep an eye on your inbox as we continue to share our favorite moments from the Folger stage. 

Want to catch up? All ENCORES are available on our website and YouTube channel

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A Botanically Inspired Online Poetry Workshop




The O.B. Hardison Poetry Series and the U.S. Botanic Garden have partnered to create an online poetry workshop entitled Bloom that explores the natural world through poetry. 

Participants will hear poet Jane Clarke read garden-inspired poetry and learn from USBG Horticulturist Adam Pyle’s presentation as they create their own work. Participants will take inspiration from the USBG’s rose garden and their own surroundings as well as Jane's writing prompts. At the conclusion of the workshop, participants will write and have the opportunity to share their own poems.

The cost for the workshop is $75, with a discount for Folger and U.S. Botanic Garden members and Folger subscribers. 

This program is a collaboration between the Folger Shakespeare Library and the U.S. Botanic Garden.




We are deeply grateful to have you as a part of the Folger community. If you are able, we hope you will consider making a gift today to help sustain the O.B. Hardison Poetry Series and programs like it. 




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