Photo by Mark Hanauer

This interview with newly-appointed U.S. Poet-Laureate, W. S. Merwin took place in the fall of 1992 at the Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival in New Jersey. In it Merwin talks about poetry coming from the “right place,” comments on his teacher Richard Blackburn, tells a bit about his early influence by Milton, and offers advice for those who would better appreciate poetry. The audio quality is good but less than pristine. We were using a small, hand-held tape recorder while sitting at a picnic table surrounded by festival goers eating lunch. At one point you will notice a passersby briefly saying something to Mr. Merwin. The “discussions” referred in the interview were part of the NEH-funded “Poets-In-Person” program organized by Joe Parisi to bring discussions of poetry to libraries. At the time I was Project Director for an upstate New York version of the program. The recording of Mr. Merwin was made so that it could be played for library groups who gathered as part of the Poets-In-Person series to discuss his work.


Listen to the interview of W. S. Merwin by Charlie Rossiter at the 1992 Geraldine R. Dodge Poetry Festival.

Stream the entire reading in lo-fi (best for dialup connections) or…
Stream the reading in hi-fi (if you have broadband.)
Technical Note: The lo-fi selections are encoded in 32Kbps monoaural mp3 format and should offer skip-free playback on a standard dial-up connection. The hi-fi selections are encoded in the ogg vorbis format (at 64Kbps) and may require an upgrade to your audio player. The latest version of Winamp is a good, and free choice for updating your audio capabilities.

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