by Trent Gilliss, senior editor + Shubha Bala, associate producer
On December 1, Krista interviewed Elizabeth Alexander, a poet probably best known for her poem "Praise Song for the Day", which she delivered at the inauguration of President Barack Obama. We’re producing this show for release on January 6, our first show of the new year!
We live-tweeted the 90-minute conversation and have aggregated them here for those of you who don’t do Twitter, or those of you who do but don’t follow @Beingtweets, or those of you who follow us but missed the stream because a) you were working or studying or b) because you follow so many people that your stream flows as rapidly as a spring thaw during flood season:
- Krista is starting an interview with Elizabeth Alexander, Obama’s inaugural poet, essayist and teacher http://is.gd/i357R
- "Art arrests us. It makes us stop in the midst. It makes us contemplate" - Elizabeth Alexander
- "I was the proverbial child with the jug ears - I was a listener" - Elizabeth Alexander
- Poet Elizabeth Alexander on being a voracious reader: “Why would you like to make things you also wouldn’t consume?”
- "We crave truth tellers. We crave real truth. There is so much bologna all the time." - Elizabeth Alexander
- "Children know when they’re being bamboozled. And they are drawn towards language that shimmers." - Elizabeth Alexander
- Elizabeth Alexander tells us about the ‘I’ in poetry by reading us “Ars Poetica #100: I Believe” http://is.gd/i391u
- "I look at my children and think as much as I know you I do not know what’s in your head..and yet I crave knowing you that deeply" Alexander
- Elizabeth Alexander shares a story about reading this favorite poem on the Mall for a soundcheck before the inauguration http://is.gd/i3axu
- "Poems are fantastic spaces to arrive at conundrum-y questions." -poet Elizabeth Alexander
- There has to be such a thing as love that doesn’t have to preempt grievance. - Elizabeth Alexander
- "Poems are living organisms - they’re so yeasty. They become more than what they are." - poet Elizabeth Alexander
- "Much to my amazement I’ve been publishing poems for 20 years. And much to my amazement, I’m a middle-aged woman!" -poet Elizabeth Alexander
- "We speak out of what we know and what we have lived. Hopefully from that comes something we call universal." -poet Elizabeth Alexander.
- "My poet self - she’s all intuition.There’s no program. She’s doing as Adrienne Rich said: ‘Diving into the the wreck." -Elizabeth Alexander
- "Communities, tribes, people have always told the story of who they are in song." - poet Elizabeth Alexander
- "You can snatch time to make a poem…They are like grass or flowers coming up in the sidewalk cracks." -poet Elizabeth Alexander
- Elizabeth Alexander describes poetry as “a poor people’s art form.” She says, “You can’t write a novel without a lot of time to yourself.”
- "We crave radiance in this austere world, light in the spiritual darkness." - poet Elizabeth Alexander reading from "Allegiance."