Nationality: United States

Spacebar by Heather McHugh

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

Poem and reading by Heather McHugh

Animation by Braulio Garcia for the Poetry Foundation’s Poetry Everywhere series

African-American folk poetry: gandy dancers

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker: ,

Excerpt of a film by Barry Dornfeld and Maggie Holtzberg-Call

Gandy dancers were the guys who straightened track. A YouTube preview from a full-length documentary (not embeddable) on Folkstreams.net.

Meta-Free-Phor-All

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:
The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Meta-Free-Phor-All: Shall I Nail Thee to a Summer’s Day?
comedycentral.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor NASA Name Contest

Something for April Fool’s Day — and the first day of (Inter-)National Poetry Month — from a king of fools. This episode of the Colbert Report aired on April 19, 2007. Colbert seems to genuinely like poetry, and has interviewed a number of poets on his show. I like the way this skit plays off the misconception popular with people who “just don’t understand poetry”: that a poem (or metaphor) is basically a code with one correct solution. I’m also impressed by Robert Pinksy’s stage presence and acting skills.

Incision by Jillian Weise

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

Poem by Jillian Weise, from An Amputee’s Guide to Sex

Animation by John Roberts

From the publisher’s description:

The Amputee’s Guide to Sex is an authentic exploration of disability and sexuality. Tired of seeing “cripples” appear as asexual characters in all forms of media, Weise took on a subject close to home: her own disability. This does not mean that these poems “happened” to Weise in real life. While based on the experience of an above-the-knee amputee, the poems have a life of their own.

Lullaby by Anne Sexton

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

Poem by Anne Sexton

Video by Jeff Doud

The Frigidaires of Idaho by Virginia Shank

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

Poem and animation by Virginia Shank, with music by One Ring Studio

A rare example of a poet making a video interpretation of her own work — and in claymation yet! She gets huge respect from me. I found more information about the project in a blog post.

It’s nice to see that months of work have turned out so well and it’s hard to believe that Virginia found time to sculpt each frame by hand (for a total of literally thousands of individual frames) when she had three classes to take, a literary magazine (Fugue) to read for, and two classes to teach. But she’s like that – when she’s not making the best sushi for a hundred miles or singing Nancy Sinatra at our weekly MFA karaoke sessions, she’s doing THIS.

One Art by Elizabeth Bishop

Poet: | Nationality: | Filmmaker:

Poem by Elizabeth Bishop

Film by Erica Tachoir

One of the more unique and ambitious approaches to the video poetry genre I’ve seen so far. I like the meta- aspect here, what the film says about readers and how poems intertwine with their lives. I also like the implicit judgement against people who can’t tolerate poetic expression.