The Favorite Poem Project was founded by Robert Pinsky, former Poet Laureate of the United States. The project recently published a collecton of 200 poems that were chosen by a cross-section of readers throughout the US: carpenters, teachers, nurses, plumbers, et al. It really is a wonderful book, containing a number of my favorites, as well as many beautiful poems that I either hadn't read before, or had forgotten. Equally enjoyable are the introductions to the poems written by the people who submitted them. They make for as compelling and enjoyable a read as the poems, themselves. The title of the book is: "An Invitation To Poetry." It is edited by Robert Pinsky and Maggie Dietz, and published by W. W. Norton & Co. LTD. I recommend it highly.
Thanks for the forward, Joseph. How were the participants chosen/selected?
Thanks for the info. Hugh. It looks interesting, but I still don't know how submissions were selected.
You'll probably have to ask the editors, but I imagine they chose a cross-section of what they considered the most interesting individuals and poems from the thousands of entries they received.
"This anthology embodies Robert Pinsky's commitment to discover America's beloved poems. The selections in this anthology were chosen from the personal letters of thousands of Americans who responded to Robert Pinsky's invitation to write to him about their favorite poems. Some poems are memories treasured in the mind since childhood; some crystallize the passion of love or recall the trail of loss and sorrow. The poems and poets in this anthology—from Sappho to Lorca, from Shakespeare and Chaucer to Gwendolyn Brooks, Louise Glück, and Allen Ginsberg—are poems to be read aloud and memorized, poems to be celebrated as part of our nation's cultural inheritance."
How Sappho is part of the USA's cultural inheritance is not spelled out!
Damnit Jim, I'm a poet, not a linguist !
Q: How were the poems selected?
A: They were chosen.
Well, alrighty then!
As far as "America's cultural inheritance" goes, thank goodness it's NOT limited to stuff written BY Americans! We'd be stranded on the Shores of Gitche Gumee!
"What thou lov'st well is thy true heritage" (E.P.)
Sappho's Diner, maybe
I'll say it before Hugh does- a cunning linguist?
Pam, the thought never crossed my mind, til now!
Hugh, thanks for finding the description. But I would still be interested to know who picked which submissions, and why.
Mr. Jorgan would NEVER say such a thing, Pam !
Actually we Ojibwe consider the shores of Gichi Gami pretty nice
Most of Ginsberg's poetry wouldn't have made my favorites list, but there's no accounting for taste. (Of course this is said by one with no taste for accounting.)
Rats, and I've got to take accounting in Spring.
Pam, if you must. Rent a copy of "Donald in Mathemagic Land", it'll keep things in perspective.
Time to reread The Phantom Tollbooth as well.