1. Past One O'Clock... written by Vladimir Mayakovsky is read from a translation from Russian in Hayward, M., & Reavey, G. (1960). The bedbug and selected poetry. New York: Meridian Books. Mayakovsky was a poet, playwright, artist, and actor who committed suicide when he was 37 years old in 1930. He is considered by many to be the leading poet of the Russian Revolution of 1917 and of the early Soviet period.
2. According to Wikipedia, the poem, Wait for Me, “written by the Russian poet and playwright turned war correspondent Konstantin Simonov, is one of the best known Russian poems of the Great Patriotic War. The poem was written by Simonov in 1941 after he left his love Valentina Serova behind to take on his new duties of war correspondent on the battlefront.” Many front-line soldiers, it is said, wrapped a copy of this poem around lockets with pictures of their wives or girlfriends. I first heard this poem recited by Laurence Olivier during a television series, The World at War. I believe that no one can match the delivery of a recitation of this poem in English like Olivier – said to speak Shakespeare's lines as if he were “actually thinking them.” Yet, I could not resist the joy of reciting this poem humbly myself:
3. Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem, Ulysses, plumbs the wanderlust of Ulysses, hero of The Odyssey, an ancient Greek epic tale attributed to the allegedly blind bard, Homer. Tennyson's poem reflects on the defiant, yet hopeful, preparation for the final journey of life:
4. Billy Collins, former U.S. Poet Laureate, is one of my favorite poets. The poem, The Lanyard, is a wistful homage to mothers everywhere that I wish would be read aloud every Mother's Day:
5. The poem, Dog, recited on Lawrence Ferlinghetti's 97th birthday:
6. A video rendition of a poem by NoŽl Coward that I created for a celebration of a friend's life: Nothing is Lost. When the College of Education was not able to hold a karaoke event at a local establishment due to budget constraints, I invited folks to engage in a virtual karaoke: Karaoke for the College
7. A video rendition of a Billy Collins poem, Aristotle, prepared as a gift for my advisee’s new baby.
8. For a friend and her daughter who miss their husband and dad: A video and recitation of an ee cummings poem, [i carry your heart with me(i carry it in].
9. Video I made to commemorate the start of Fall Semester 2016 at Penn State: 37 Years at Penn State.
10. In a homage to the great Rogers and Hammerstein musical, Oklahoma, my performance of It's a Beautiful Day in Central Pennsylvania.
11. A recitation of the poem, Forgetfulness, written by Billy Collins: