The United States Poet Laureate, Tracy K. Smith, has announced her upcoming podcast and radio show titled “The Slowdown.”
By reading the works from American writers during her five-minute program, Smith will reinstate the power of poetry to listeners all across the country. It will explore how poetry aids in allowing us to better understand aspects of life such as history, the arts, and science. Although brief, the show’s intent is to encourage listeners to make room for poetry in their daily, hectic lives. “Poetry isn’t an escape or even a luxury,” Smith tells the Library of Congress. “I’d argue it’s a necessity, a means of living more deeply with reality.”
With her new podcast, the Pulitzer Prize-winning poet is allowing listeners to remember how alive and present poetry can make one feel. “I’m excited to continue the work I’ve done as poet laureate in celebrating poems and the conversations they foster,” Smith says. “And thanks to technology’s ability to collapse the distance between people—to give you the feeling that there is one person out there speaking directly and only to you—geography is no longer a barrier to participation. I think this is a perfect medium for talking about the very real and natural ways that poems speak to the daily experience of being alive.”
“The Slowdown” is produced by American Public Media (APM), and will launch in podcast form on November 26th. It will be available for broadcast on public radio stations across the United States beginning January 14th. Click here to listen to a trailer for the program and subscribe for future updates.