Featured resources

From "Down To Write You This Poem Sat" at the Oakville Gallery

  1. Charles Bernstein, "Phone Poem" (2011) (1:30): MP3
  2. Caroline Bergvall, "Love song: 'The Not Tale (funeral)' from Shorter Caucer Tales (2006): MP3
  3. Christian Bôk, excerpt from Eunoia, from Chapter "I" for Dick Higgins (2009) (1:38):  MP3
  4. Tonya Foster, Nocturne II (0:40) (2010) MP3
  5. Ted Greenwald, "The Pears are the Pears" (2005) (0:29): MP3
  6. Susan Howe, Thorow, III (3:13) (1998):  MP3
  7. Tan Lin, "¼ : 1 foot" (2005) (1:16): MP3
  8. Steve McCaffery, "Cappuccino" (1995) (2:35): MP3
  9. Tracie Morris, From "Slave Sho to Video aka Black but Beautiful" (2002) (3:40): MP3
  10. Julie Patton, "Scribbling thru the Times" (2016) (5:12): MP3
  11. Tom Raworth, "Errory" (c. 1975) (2:08): MP3
  12. Jerome Rothenberg, from "The First Horse Song of Frank Mitchell: 4-Voice Version" (c. 1975) (3:30): MP3
  13. Cecilia Vicuna, "When This Language Disappeared" (2009) (1:30): MP3
  1. Guillaume Apollinaire, "Le Pont Mirabeau" (1913) (1:14): MP3
  2. Amiri Baraka, "Black Dada Nihilismus" (1964) (4:02):  MP3
  3. Louise Bennett, "Colonization in Reverse" (1983) (1:09): MP3
  4. Sterling Brown, "Old Lem " (c. 1950s) (2:06):  MP3
  5. John Clare, "Vowelless Letter" (1849) performed by Charles Bernstein (2:54): MP3
  6. Velimir Khlebnikov, "Incantation by Laughter" (1910), tr. and performed by Bernstein (:28)  MP3
  7. Harry Partch, from Barstow (part 1), performed by Bernstein (1968) (1:11): MP3
  8. Leslie Scalapino, "Can’t’ is ‘Night’" (2007) (3:19): MP3
  9. Kurt Schwitters, "Ur Sonata: Largo" performed by Ernst Scwhitter (1922-1932) ( (3:12): MP3
  10. Gertrude Stein, If I Told Him: A Completed Portrait of Picasso (1934-35) (3:42): MP3
  11. William Carlos Willliams, "The Defective Record" (1942) (0:28): MP3
  12. Hannah Weiner, from Clairvoyant Journal, performed by Weiner, Sharon Mattlin & Rochelle Kraut (2001) (6:12): MP3

Selected by Charles Bernstein (read more about his choices here)

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Trish Salah on PennSound

Posted 5/8/2024

Today we're highlighting our author page for Canadian poet and critic Trish Salah.

Our holdings begin with the poet's appearance at the 2009 ADFEMPO (Advancing Feminist Poetics and Activism) conference, organized by Belladonna*, which took place on September 24th and 25th of that year. Salah appeared as part of a panel on "Body as Discourse" chaired by Kate Eichhorn that included Joan Retallack, Laura Smith, Nathalie Stephens (Nathanaël), and Ronaldo V. Wilson in addition to Salah, which explored "questions of the body, referentiality, remapping bodies and borders, intertextuality, narrativity, aesthetics, and the challenges of de-essentialization as we scrutinize 'female,' 'queer,' 'raced' and 'othered' bodies."

Beyond that panel, we had a brief set as part of a Belladonna* Reading Series event on Transfeminism and Literature from 2012, and Salah's Segue Series reading at the Zinc Bar in March 2013. Since then, we've added several more recordings, including "Nevada: A Reading and Panel" that also included Imogen Binnie, from the Young Centre for Performing Arts in 2013; 2014's Wanting in Arabic: A Conversation with Poet Trish Salah," recorded as part of the Asia Pacific Forum for NYC's WBAI-FM; and a 2014 reading at the East Bay Poetry Summit, hosted by the Manifest Reading and Workshop Series. There's also a very exciting PennSound Podcast episode (#57) in which Christy Davids interviews Salah and Salah reads her poetry, including "Two Self Portraits," "Interlude for the Voice," "Future Foundered," and "Gossels in Fugue."

You can listen to any and all of the recordings mentioned above by clicking here.

In Memoriam: David Shapiro (1947–2024)

Posted 5/7/2024

Last week, while the world was focused on pro-Palestine campus occupations at Columbia University and elsewhere one photo that frequently made the rounds was this one of students occupying the office of Columbia's president in 1968. Those in the know will recognize the central figure as poet David Shapiro, who died yesterday at the age of 77.

A precocious and prolific polymath, Shapiro first hit the cultural scene as a teenager, working as a professional violinist with several orchestras and publishing his first work in Poetry at the age of sixteen. That infamous photo was taken during the end of the first of three tenures at Columbia: he earned his BA in 1968, returned for a Ph.D. in 1973, and eventually joined the faculty. Beyond his own poetry, Shapiro published both art and literary criticism, along with work as a translator and editor (perhaps most notably, An Anthology of New York Poets with Ron Padgett). His influence was felt widely and he will be missed by many.

We direct listeners to Shapiro's PennSound author page, where you can browse a small collection of more recently recordings, including a pair of Segue Series events and a reading for Dia Art Foundation, and a 1976 ten-year memorial for Frank O'Hara at the Poetry Project, which also featured Joe LeSeuer, Patsy Southgate, Jane Freilicher (reading James Schuyler), Anne Waldman as MC, Kenneth Koch (reading "Awake in Spain"), Carter Ratcliffe, Tony Towle, Patsy Southgate, and Peter Schjedahl. Click here to start exploring.

In Memoriam: Paul Auster (1947–2024)

Posted 5/3/2024

Unfortunately we close this week out with word of yet another major literary figure's passing: Paul Auster, best known as a novelist, but also a poet, translator, essayist, and screenwriter, died on April 30th at the age of 77. 

Our cofounders both shared remembrances of the author this week. Al Filreis recalled that "Paul Auster's two visits to the Kelly Writers House were fabulously memorable — one in 2001, the second 17 years later during his time as a Writers House Fellow in 2018. I had the honor of hosting him, and hanging out with him, for the 3 days of that second stay. What a literary mind! What a voice (in all senses)." Concluding by noting that "his passing is a major loss," he encouraged folks to "look at his PennSound page and have a listen."

Charles Bernstein shared this photo of him flanked by three authors who've passed away recently, with the caption, "Ave atque vale: Paul Auster, Jerome Rothenberg, Marjorie Perloff, 20 years ago at a panel I organized on Radical Jewish Poetry / Secular Jewish Practice at the Center for Jewish History in NY. Our talks and much more were later collected in a book in the Alabama series: Radical Poetics and Secular Jewish Culture."

The recordings highlighted in their notes are just some of the treasures waiting for you on PennSound's Paul Auster author page, along with a 1995 LINEbreak interview with Bernstein and a contemporaneous reading from The Red Notebook at SUNY-Buffalo as part of the Wednesdays @ 4Plus series, along with a 1989 reading at the St. Mark's Poetry Project with Paul Violi. The 2004 Secular Jewish Culture / Radical Poetic Practice event at Manhattan's Center for Jewish History/American Jewish Historical Society — which also included Kathryn Hellerstein and Stephen Paul Miller — can be found here along with more information on the event.

We send our condolences to Auster's family, friends, and fans worldwide.

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