Poems from Here with Maine Poet Laureate Stuart Kestenbaum

Fridays on Maine Public Radio at 2:55 pm | Maine Public Classical 10 am & 1 pm

Each Friday, Stuart selects a poem by a Maine or regional poet and shares with us how language has the power to move and surprise us. Poems from Here creates a momentary community of speaker and listeners, where vibrant language slows time down and helps us to pay attention to our world.

Poems from Here is presented in collaboration with the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance and the Maine Arts Commission. Special thanks to Robert M. Chute and family along with Phil Steele and Francesca Galluccio-Steele for making Poems from Here possible. Additional support is provided by The New Writing Series at the University of Maine.


Dec 16, 2016

Today’s poem is by “Winter” by Marianne Boruch. Marianne is the author of Xx books of poetry, most recently Eventually One Dreams the Real Thing, two collections of essays and a memoir. She directs the graduate writing program at Purdue University. In the 1980s she taught at the University of Maine at Farmington, and wrote this poem in Maine.

Poem For St. Francis

Dec 9, 2016

Today’s poem is by Sylvester Pollet. Sylvester, who died in 2007, taught writing at the University of Maine. He was also the editor of the Backwoods Broadsides Poetry series—publishing 100 issues over 12 years.


Nov 26, 2016

Today’s poem is “Grandfather” by Gary Lawless. Gary grew up in Belfast and owns Gulf of Maine Books in Brunswick. He’s theauthor of 17 books of poems, most recently Caribou Planet. Gary began writing poetry in high school when he writes that he “discovered that it was right to write about your own life, what you saw and heard around you. I found that poetry rises out of the world around us, and belongs to everyone.”

A Little Bit Of Timely Advice

Nov 23, 2016

Today’s poem is by Mekeel McBride. She is a professor of English at the University of New Hampshire and published six books of poetry, most recently Dog Star Delicatessen, New and Selected Poems 1970-2006.  Mekeel wrote the poem “A Little Bit of Timely Advice” at a time when she felt that wasn’t going to write again.


Nov 11, 2016

Today's poem is by Dawn Potter.  Dawn directs the Frost Place Conference on Poetry and Teaching, held each summer at Robert Frost's home in Franconia, New Hampshire.  Dawn is the author or editor of seven books of poetry. Her most recent book, "The Vagabond's Bookshelf", a reader's memoir, was published this year. In her poem,

The School Bus

Nov 4, 2016

Today’s poem is The School Bus by Christian Barter. He’s published two books of poems. His next book, Bye-bye Land, a book-length poem, will be published by BOA Editions in early 2017 as the winner of the Isabella Gardner Prize. His primary occupation is working on a trail crew, planning and overseeing construction and rehabilitation of hiking trails at Acadia National Park, where he also serves as Poet Laureate.     


Oct 28, 2016

 Today’s poem is Snow by Elizabeth Tibbets. She’s the author of two books of poems, Perfect Selves (Oyster River Press) and In the Well (Bluestem Press). She lives in Hope and worked as a nurse. She writes that she was working in a nursing home and a “lovely elderly lady with the bluest eyes, who was homesick for her island (and would never go home again), told me that snow would put things right.”  


Oct 24, 2016

Today’s poem is by Candice Stover. Candice lives in Somesville and teaches writing workshops to all levels of writers. She’s the author of three books, most recently Poems from the Pond (Deerbrook Editions).   In her poem, Appointment she describes going for a swim. She says she’s interested in “the small quiet rituals that keep us sane” and that for her swimming is one of those moments when she feels most alive, which is also when “we know we are mortal.”  


Oct 20, 2016

Today's poem is Fire by William Carpenter. Bill was the first faculty member at College of the Atlantic where he still teaches literature and writing. He's the author of three books pf poems and two novels, the most recent is Wooden Nickel (Little Brown). He has written, "...most of my work comes from what I see and hear firght around home. Many of my poems, like "Fire", are about edges and boundaries.  Maine is full of boundaries - the land and the ocean, the past and the present, wealth and poverty, civilization and wildness."

Two Poems by David Budbill

Oct 10, 2016

Today we have two poems by Vermont poet David Budbill. David is the author of ten books of poems, as well as novels, plays short stories, and a libretto for opera. His latest book of poems Tumbling Toward the End, will be published in 2017.

For many years David lived in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont.  There is much in common between our states.  About his writing he says, “I’ve got a sense of humor and it always comes through. Any more than that, I cannot say.

My Wife Asks Me Why I Keep Photographs In A Drawer

Sep 30, 2016

Baron Wormser  grew up in Baltimore and in 1970 he moved to Maine with his wife Janet. For twenty-five years he worked as a librarian for SAD 59 in Madison, Maine and homesteaded off-the-grid 48 acres. He’s published ten books of poetry, the most recent is Unidentified Sighing Objects. He now lives in Montpelier, Vermont.

To The Infinitesimal

Sep 23, 2016

From the collection Rough Cradle.

In The Pasture

Sep 16, 2016

From the collection Agreeable Friends: Contemporary Animal Poetry.

Rules of the New Car

Sep 9, 2016

From Lovers of the Lost: New and Selected Poems.