Poetry Goes to the Movies
Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E06: Good Poets, Bad Films

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E06: Good Poets, Bad Films

February 9, 2022

We end the first season with a look at how two poets have fared when their lives have been turned into celluloid: Allen Ginsberg (Kill Your Darlings, Howl, Pull My Daisy!, Renaldo and Clara) and Byron (Bad Lord Byron, Lady Caroline Lamb, Gothic). Can these films provide any real insight into poets and poetry - or are they mere parodies unworthy of the people they depict?

Guest Star: Ruben Quesada, editor of Latinx Poetics: Essays on the Art of Poetry and author of Revelations and Next Extinct Mammal, on Pedro Almodóvar and Terrence Malick. 

Draft and redraft (and redraft) with Groundhog Day

Draft and redraft (and redraft) with Groundhog Day

January 11, 2022

Bill Murray found himself stuck on repeat in 1993's Groundhog Day. Can being forced to relive the same day give an insight into the redrafting process? We also have a think about why light verse and film comedies don't get the respect they deserve. And there's a little look at Bill Murray's well-publicised love of poetry. Look out for poems by Samuel Coleridge Taylor, Emily Dickinson, David Berman, Wendy Cope, and Marianne Chan.
Guest star: Emma Hine, author of Stay Safe, on When Harry Met Sally and Jaws.

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E04: Polterzeitgeist!

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E04: Polterzeitgeist!

December 21, 2021

The haunted house is the metaphor that keeps giving. Poems are sort of haunted houses (haunted by its influences) as is the USA itself (haunted by the ghosts of the indigenous and enslaved peoples who suffered at the hands of early European settlers). The two metaphors meet in Tobe Hooper's 1982 horror film Poltergeist. We get spooked by poems by Mary Oliver, Samuel Menashe and T.S. Eliot, while our host Adam O. Davis discusses his collection Index of Haunted Houses and the economic roots of haunted houses.
Guest star: Joy Priest, author of Horsepower, on Mississippi Damned.

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E03: Cracking the Code with Zodiac

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E03: Cracking the Code with Zodiac

November 30, 2021

People often think poems are codes to be cracked. Is it possible to enjoy a poem without 'solving' it? In search of an answer we turn to David Fincher's 2007 masterpiece Zodiac, which is based on the true story of the serial killer who terrorised San Francisco in the 1960s and 1970s. Is there more to our hosts' cheeky suggestion that there are similarities between Zodiac's fondness for writing letters to newspapers and poets submitting work to journals? We find out with the help of poems by Billy Collins, Rimbaud and Harryette Mullen.

Guest star: Diana Marie Delgado, author of Tracing the Horse, on Bram Stoker's Dracula.

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E02: Face/Off, Masks and Identity

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E02: Face/Off, Masks and Identity

November 10, 2021

With its stylised gun play, John Woo's action films have been called 'ballets of bullets', which hints at their unexpectedly 'poetic' qualities. We test that theory to destruction with Woo's 1997 blockbuster Face/Off, where Nicholas Cage and John Travolta play a hitman and cop who swap identities. Can Yeats, Ovid and Fiona Benson direct a spotlight on the film's unexpected depths?

Guest star: Chad Bennet, author of Your New Feeling is an Artifact of a Bygone Era, on film fade outs

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E01: Saturday Night at the Poems

Poetry Goes to the Movies S01E01: Saturday Night at the Poems

October 19, 2021

How often have you heard a film described as 'poetic'? Does 'poetic' mean anything more than 'looks nice'? What, if anything, do poems and films have in common? In the first episode of Poetry Goes to the Movies, we look at film directors who wrote poetry (Derek Jarman, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Abbas Kiarostami) and poets who made films, with a particular focus on Maya Deren and Margaret Tait.

Guest Star: Gerda Stevenson, author of Quines, talks about acting in Tait's sole feature-length film and her own poetry.

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