Weathering the winter of our discontent – with words

Now is the winter of our discontent – William Shakespeare

Click first, read later:   The poet, Robert Bly, one-time Poet Laureate of Minnesota, offers a sense of winter’s meaning too often lost in grumping about the irritations of ice and isolation on a January day.

Listeners who find comfort, escape, unadulterated beauty in the words and images will want to explore more, hear and view more of these Poetry Breaks, a series of video readings that are being posted weekly by the Academy of American Poets website (

The videos were filmed in the late 80’s and early 90’ by Leita Luchetti who coproduced the series with WGBH New Television Workshops. Each video features a well-known poet reading his or her own work and/or the work of other poets. The reading is followed by a discussion of poets and poetry.

Precious treasures often wait for just the right moment in time to disclose their richness. These frigid days and perilous times create conditions that cry out for the vision and solace expressed in the words, even the presence, of these brilliant poets. Captured by the video artist, now shared by the Academy, these recorded encounters with poets and their art give us comfort and hope; they also remind us of the potential of technology to share and shape a better, more peaceful, world.

Learn more about Poetry Breaks and the unique resources of the Academy of American Poets here ( Time spent exploring the Academy’s website will warm your heart and lift your spirits.



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