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Susan Howe

Poetry Programs

WBAI-Pacifica Radio

Susan Howe's WBAI (NY)-Pacifica Radio shows are available on PennSound in collaboration with the Archive for New Poetry at the University of California, San Diego. Our digital copies were made from recordings housed at the archive.

Helen Adam, 1977-1978

  • performing her work and in conversation with Susan Howe and Charles Ruas, 1977-1978
    1. Ballad of the Hawthorn Bower (4:20): MP3
    2. introduction (1:03): MP3
    3. on her childhood in Scotland (8:39): MP3
    4. on moving to San Francisco, "San Francisco's Burning," and writing ballads aloud (6:28): MP3
    5. In and Out of the Horn-Beam Maze (5:38): MP3
    6. on her favorite painters (2:17): MP3
    7. on Allen Ginsberg, Jack Spicer, Open Space, and the atmosphere of San Francisco (4:11): MP3
    8. At the Window (1:12): MP3
    9. on gothic romances, magic, and the relationship between love and death (5:44): MP3
    10. on Henry VIII's wives and ruthlessness (2:24): MP3
    11. The Fair Young Wife (6:08): MP3
    12. on madness, the Elizabethan era, and reincarnation (3:02): MP3
    13. on Yeats, George MacDonald, and Robert Duncan (6:55): MP3
    14. A Walk in the Wind (1:42): MP3

    complete recording (1:01:12): MP3

    Bruce Andrews and Charles Bernstein, 1979

    reading their work and in conversation with Susan Howe

    1. March 14, 1979, full program one hour: MP3
    2. Andrews reads from R+B (2:30): MP3
    3. Andrews reads "How" (5:36): MP3
    4. Bernstein reads "Matters of Policy" from Controlling Interests (11:31): MP3

    John Ashbery, 1975

    • May 14th — complete program (32:41): MP3
    • June 7th — complete program (20:04): MP3

    (for segmented versions of these readings, please visit PennSound's John Ashbery author page)

    Elizabeth Bishop, 1979

    with Susan Howe and Charles Ruas

    1. Introduction by Susan Howe (0:55): MP3
    2. From "First Lessons in Geography," Monteith's Geographical Series, A.S. Barnes & Co., 1884 (1:37): MP3
    3. The Moose (6:19): MP3
    4. Crusoe in England (9:06): MP3
    5. The Man-Moth (3:51): MP3
    6. Brazil: January 1, 1502 (3:25): MP3
    7. At the Fishhouses (4:41): MP3
    8. on her early childhood (1:42): MP3
    9. on her interest in geography and travel (2:26): MP3
    10. on the writers who have influenced her work (5:08): MP3
    11. on developing an interest in history and the literary culture in Nova Scotia (1:59): MP3
    12. on meeting South American writers, translating poetry, and her second-hand experience with political activisim (7:36): MP3
    13. on living in Key West, Brazil, and Greenwich Village (2:07): MP3
    14. on teaching Wallace Stevens (1:19): MP3
    15. explaining her attitude toward feminism in relation to poetry (1:44): MP3
    16. contemplating how her writing has changed over the course of her career (0:56): MP3
    17. describing how she works (4:25): MP3
    18. Bishop's thoughts on hearing poetry aloud and the element of performance in readings (4:59): MP3
    19. on Ezra Pound (1:45): MP3
    20. on Emily Dickinson (1:43): MP3
    21. remarking on past and future travels (0:31): MP3

    Ted Greenwald, 1977

    reading (27:10): MP3

    Barbara Guest, April 13, 1978

    1. Red Lilies (1:08): MP3
    2. on her childhood and when she started to write (1:47): MP3
    3. on Stephen Guest and H.D. (2:40): MP3
    4. on using a male persona in Seeking Air (2:42): MP3
    5. "I don't think I could stand the noise of this city a day longer..." [excerpt, from Seeking Air] (1:55): MP3
    6. on Wide Sargasso Sea (0:24): MP3
    7. "Night wind blowing from the north..." [excerpt, from Seeking Air] (1:47): MP3
    8. on her interest in colonial life (1:25): MP3
    9. "Dark, indeed, must have always been mixed..." [excerpt, from Seeking Air] (2:12): MP3
    10. "I think of the sallow-skinned men..." [excerpt, from Seeking Air] (1:01): MP3
    11. on George Seferis (1:18): MP3
    12. "It was like driving a ball from behind that clump of grass..." [excerpt, from Seeking Air] (4:55): MP3
    13. on the difference between writing novels and poetry (2:00): MP3
    14. on biography, autobiography, and Ford Madox's The Good Soldier (2:09): MP3
    15. on breaking down the old idea of hero and heroine (0:59): MP3
    16. on the process of working on an autobiography of H.D. (5:52): MP3
    17. on particular writers who have been important to her (1:11): MP3

    Bernadette Mayer, April 22, 1979

    1. Mayer reads "Eve of Easter" (3:19): MP3
    2. Discussion of "Eve of Easter" (1:19): MP3
    3. Introduction (2:06): MP3
    4. Mayer discusses her writing process (1:19): MP3
    5. Mayer reads "Easy Puddings" (7:14): MP3
    6. Discussion of "Baby Come Today, October 4th" (0:40): MP3
    7. Mayer reads "Baby Come Today, October 4th" (2:25): MP3
    8. Mayer reads "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" (1:39): MP3
    9. Mayer reads "Simplicities are Glittering" (3:13): MP3
    10. Discussion (27:00): MP3
    11. Mayer reads "1979" (6:14) MP3
    12. Closing comments from Susan Howe (0:57): MP3

    • Complete reading and discussion (57:51): MP3

    Maureen Owen, 1978

    March 18 and July 11, 1978 (1:02:03): MP3

    F.T. Prince, 1978

    April 21, 1978 (50:26): MP3

    Charles Reznikoff, 1975

    segmented files of his Pacifica programs at the Reznnikoff page.

    May Sarton, 1977-78

    May 16 + June 8, 1977, and June 6, 1978 (1:06:29): MP3

    The Bostonian (1981)

    program on John Hall Wheelwright
    Nov. 23, 1981 - featuring James Laughlin, Quincy Howe, Polly Thayer, Malcolm Cowley, Ray DiPalma, and Charles North (1:30:26):
    MP3

    1. introduction (3:28): MP3
    2. James Laughlin on John Wheelwright's father (1:48): MP3
    3. Susan Howe reading "Father" (1:14): MP3
    4. James Laughlin commenting on "Father" (0:54): MP3
    5. James Laughlin on John Wheelwright's New England voice (1:50): MP3
    6. Quincy Howe reading "Come Over and Help Us" (6:29): MP3
    7. Quincy Howe on his friendship with John Wheelwright (4:03): MP3
    8. Quincy Howe on John Wheelwright's family (3:49): MP3
    9. Quincy Howe on John Wheelwright as a student (2:56): MP3
    10. Quincy Howe on John Wheelwright as an unforgettable Boston personality (3:39): MP3
    11. Polly Thayer on painting John Wheelwright's portrait and his strange way of dressing (2:14): MP3
    12. Polly Thayer on John Wheelwright's mother and his passion for calling attention to himself (2:53): MP3
    13. Polly Thayer on John Wheelwright's poetry (1:07): MP3
    14. Polly Thayer on John Wheelwright's religious feelings and eccentricities (1:40): MP3
    15. Ray DiPalma reading "Coq D'or" (1:49): MP3
    16. Ray DiPalma reading "Cross Questions" (1:04): MP3
    17. Ray DiPalma reading "Plate Glass Membrane" (1:07): MP3
    18. Malcolm Cowley on John Wheelwright at Harvard (7:20): MP3
    19. Malcolm Cowley on John Wheelwright and Cessation Magazine (3:52): MP3
    20. Malcolm Cowley reading "Fish Food" (4:14): MP3
    21. Malcolm Cowley commenting on "Fish Food" (1:38): MP3
    22. Malcolm Cowley on John Wheelwright and The Aesthete Magazine (1:45): MP3
    23. Malcolm Cowley on John Wheelwright's socialism (1:50): MP3
    24. Charles North on lyricism, control, and courage in John Wheelwright's poetry (2:19): MP3
    25. Charles North reading "Link" (1:16): MP3
    26. Charles North reading "Boston in Summer, with a Confession" (1:02): MP3
    27. Charles North reading "Midwinter Walk" (0:43): MP3
    28. Charles North reading "Train Ride" (4:39): MP3
    29. James Laughlin on John Wheelwright getting his work published in Boston (1:21): MP3
    30. James Laughlin on "Dinner Call" (1:44): MP3
    31. James Laughlin reading "Dinner Call" (4:52): MP3
    32. James Laughlin on publishing John Wheelwright (2:13): MP3
    33. James Laughlin on S. Foster Damon and John Wheelwright's self-defeatist attitude about getting published (2:22): MP3
    34. James Laughlin on John Wheelwright's funeral (0:42): MP3
    35. James Laughlin on Kenneth Burke (0:16): MP3

    These sound recordings are being made available for noncommercial and educational use only. All rights to this recorded material belong to the poets and to Susan Howe. © 2007 by Susan Howe and the poets. Used with permission of Susan Howe and the Archive for New Poetry, UCSD. Distributed by PennSound.