Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Meet the new U.S. Poet Laureate

Today the Library of Congress announced that Donald Hall has been appointed as the 14th poet laureate of the United States. He has been writing poetry for 60 years (he's 77) and has published 15 books of poems. He will officially begin his duties in the fall.

Set to Verse: Donald Hall is New Poet Laureate
(Washington Post article from today's Style section)

Librarian of Congress Appoints Donald Hall Poet Laureate
(News from the Library of Congress)

"Christmas party at the South Danbury Church"

December twenty-first
we gather at the white Church festooned
red and green, the tree flashing
green-red lights beside the altar.
After the children of Sunday School
recite Scripture, sing songs,
and scrape out solos,
they retire to dress for the finale,
to perform the pageant
again: Mary and Joseph kneeling
cradleside, Three Kings,
shepherds and shepherdesses. Their garments
are bathrobes with mothholes,
cut down from the Church's ancestors.
Standing short and long,
they stare in all directions for mothers,
sisters and brothers,
giggling and waving in recognition,
and at the South Danbury
Church, a moment before Santa
arrives with her ho-hos
and bags of popcorn, in the half-dark
of whole silence, God
enters the world as a newborn again.

~ Donald Hall, from The New Criterion (Jan. 1995)


Anonymous Will said...

Thanks for this heads up, Andrea!

Boy, it's about time. Donald has won who knows how many Pulitzers by now. He's probably the most critically acclaimed American poet living. Well, actually, I'm certain he is.

Looking forward to seeing what happens next...

1:52 PM  

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