Poetry News

2012 will bring forever poetry stamps!

By Harriet Staff

The United States Post Office is honoring ten poets with their very own postage stamps! Yes, the visages of Elizabeth Bishop, Joseph Brodsky, Gwendolyn Brooks, E. E. Cummings, Robert Hayden, Denise Levertov, Sylvia Plath, Theodore Roethke, Wallace Stevens, and William Carlos Williams are to grace all your Cablevision bills. And they're priced at "forever," too!

In honor of the preview launch, USPS is encouraging folks to share their favorite poem at their Facebook page. Didn't know they had one? Neither did we, but what a grand idea.

Interesting photographic info from the release:

Art director and stamp designer Derry Noyes selected the photographs used in the stamp art. The photograph of Elizabeth Bishop was taken in Key West, Florida, by Josef Breitenbach. The photograph of Joseph Brodsky was taken in New York City by Nancy Crampton. Information about the photograph featured on the stamp honoring Gwendolyn Brooks is forthcoming.

The photograph of E. E. Cummings was taken in 1935 by Edward Weston. The photograph of Robert Hayden was taken around 1975 by Timothy D. Franklin. The photograph of Denise Levertov was taken by Rollie McKenna. The photograph of Sylvia Plath was also taken by Rollie McKenna.

The photograph of Theodore Roethke was taken in London, England, by John Deakin. The photograph of Wallace Stevens was taken by Sylvia Salmi. The photograph of William Carlos Williams was taken in the 1940s.

The pane’s verso includes an excerpt from one poem by each of the poets featured on the pane.

These stamps are being issued as Forever® stamps. Forever stamps are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate.

Originally Published: September 1st, 2011