I’m celebrating National Poetry Month by writing and reading poetry, every day. My poetry project grows out of a list of things that make me happy. I made this list on the 30th of March.
The twenty-sixth one on my list is poetry podcasts with Tracy K. Smith.
During the depths of the pandemic, when we weren’t allowed many places, walking outside was my main escape. On those walks, I would listen to Tracy K. Smith’s Slowdown podcast. The mixture of essay prior to the poem and her calming, melodic voice provided solace. Always centering, Smith’s humanity radiates. To honor her work, I attempted a golden shovel poem from a quote in her introduction to the poem You are Who I Love by Aracelis Girmay.
“an offering to the beautiful souls working for the health and healing of human culture“
A poet’s life is an
open hearted venture to expose trenches offering
up experience in order to define the world we are all struggling to
navigate. Ah yes, that is it you say reading the
words that touch you. Evoking beautiful
imaginings. Digging into memories. Harvesting the souls
of experiences in our past. Mixing with current stimuli. Working
it into a form that she bends, the poet, he sculpts for
the reader who takes it and makes meaning. Allowing us to meet the
hardships and joys. Words administered with care, deliver unexpected health
and peace in troubled times. And
that begins a healing
thought impossible. The rebirth of
hope in the human
experience. Defining how to continue as a culture.
2 thoughts on “poetry podcasts with Tracy K. Smith”
I believe poetry heals. Love the ending, “The rebirth of
hope in the human
experience. Defining how to continue as a culture.”
Perfect words for the poet:
it into a form that she bends, the poet, he sculpts”
Like you, I spent many morning listening to Tracy K. Smith. I was as inspired by her stories that began each podcast as the poem she shared each day. I was so sad for her to stop, but I completely understand the challenge. I had hoped (selfishly) she might even hang on to a weekly sharing. Thankfully all of the episodes are still there to revisit.