Stephen Burt grew up in and around Washington, DC, taught at Macalester College in Minnesota from 2000-07, and is now Professor of English at Harvard. His most recent book is The Art of the Sonnet (written with David Mikics). His other books include Randall Jarrell and His Age, The Forms of Youth: Twentieth-Century Poetry and Adolescence, Close Calls with Nonsense: Reading New Poetry (2009), and Parallel Play. He is also the editor, with Hannah Brooks-Motl, of Randall Jarrell on W H Auden. You can keep up with some of his other work, and his other interests, at his website or his personal site.
Articles By STEPHEN BURT
- Agha Shahid Ali: “Tonight”
A contemporary take on an ancient Arabic form.
- Alexander Pope: “Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot”
Did the poems of this 18th century poet prefigure modern hip-hop rivalries?
- And the Winner Is . . . Pindar!
Can any modern poet beat the world record Pindar set 25 centuries ago?
- Art vs. Laundry
Is there more to life than poetry?
- “To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield”
Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's (mis)reading of Tennyson is awash in dramatic irony.
- Does Poetry Have a Social Function?
- Donald Revell: “The Northeast Corridor”
Chronicle of a poet's rebirth in his Rust Belt poems.
- Elizabeth Alexander: “Race”
What can we assume when we read a poem?
- Elizabeth Barrett Browning: “Sonnets from the Portuguese 28”
A secret romance made (almost) public.
- John Donne: “The Sun Rising”
The poet tries to start a revolution from his bed.
- Juan Felipe Herrera: “Blood on the Wheel”
Tracing the many conflicting meanings of the word "blood"
- Naive Melody
The vast diction—and dibbles and blips—of A.R. Ammons.
- Poetry and Project Runway
Should book critics take their cues from Tim Gunn?
- Rae Armantrout: “Our Nature”
How did you become who you are?
- William Carlos Williams: “To a Poor Old Woman”
A poem from the Great Depression reveals the egalitarian nature of pleasure—and the formal innovation of a modernist master.
Audio & PodcastsPoetry Off the Shelf
Alexander Pope as Home Boy
Stephen Burt on the qualities shared by hip-hop and 18th century verse.
Spout Press released a poetry anthology dedicated to cocktails titled Lush. Poets Stephen Burt, Cindy King, and Sima Rabinowitz share some insight about their cocktail of choice. (Poems from Lush: A Poetry Anthology and Cocktail Guide. Spout Press, 2006)