New Letters
On The Air

Al Young

Former California Poet Laureate (2005-2008) Al Young has penned 25 books, won two American Book Awards, and was recently included in ...

Phyllis Becker

A great promoter of poetry in Kansas City, Phyllis Becker served on the board of The Writers Place and is coordinator of the Riverfront Reading Series. Her own publications include the 200...

August Wilson: Past American Voice

We remember the late August Wilson in this 2002 interview with the playwright who chronicled African-American life in the 20th century in plays such as...

Dan Jaffe

Poet Dan Jaffe, the guest co-editor of a recent issue of New Letters magazine that focuses on jazz, has always combined his poetry and his love of music in performances with modern ...

Anne-Marie Fyfe

Irish poet and former Chair of the Poetry Society in England, Anne-Marie Fyfe explores parallels in her poetry with the life and work of the renowned William Butler Yeats as part of the "Mapping Yeats Symposium" at the 2015 Kansas City Irish Festi...

Alice Friman

Alice Friman, the 2012 Georgia Author of the Year for her book, ...

Back to the Writing Well

We go "Back to the Writing Well" to hear from writers of place, including the late Pat Conroy. Famous for his novels about the south, with several made into movies such as ...

Jen Mann

Kansas blogger Jen Mann talks about her humorous book Spending the Holidays Wit...

The Loudest Voice: Grace Paley

A holiday favorite, this highly anthologized short story is read by the late author Grace Paley. "The Loudest Voice" is an amusing tale about a little Jewish girl, chosen to play the lead in her ...

Native American Poets Visit the Middle East

This audio anthology features readings by six poets, including a few who are part of the upcoming book co-edited by Cherokee writers Diane Glancy and Linda Rodriguez called The Wor...

Geraldine Brooks

Pulitzer Prize winning fiction writer, Geraldine Brooks talks about the 2015 book,...

Anna Deavere Smith

An Obie Award-winning playwright, MacArthur fellow, and 2015 NEH Jefferson Lecturer for Intellectual Ideas,...

The Writing Well

We go to the writing well to fill our creative spirits with advice from several fiction writers, including Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Jane Smiley,who reveals her "...

Gary Ferguson

Nature writer and activist Gary Ferguson is the author of nearly two dozen books, including the award-winning...

Adam Zagajewski

Adam Zagajewski, the 2016 recipient of the Griffin Lifetime Achievement Prize for Excellence in Poetry, was born in Lwow, Poland, but when he was four months old, his family was expelled by Ukrainians to Silesia, which at the time was part of...

Claudia Rankine

A 2016 MacArthur Genius Fellow and author of Citizen: An American Lyric, Claudia Rankine discusses the motivation for writing this multi-award-winni...

Rigoberto González

In 2015, Rigoberto González received The Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Publishing Triangle. This public reading at the University of Missouri-Kansas City gives insight into his life as he reads vignettes and poems f...

Sandra Cisneros

The recipient of the 2015 National Medal of Arts Award from President Obama, Latina author Sandra Cisneros discusses her groundbreaking 1984 de...

Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Benjamin Alire Sáenz was born in New Mexico, but later moved to El Paso, Texas, where he was a priest for a few years before leaving the order. He went on to earn a Masters degree in creative writing from the University of Texas at El Paso....

Midwest Poets Series: Missouri Poets

For the past 34 years, Rockhurst University has brought poets from around the country to do readings for the Kansas City public as part of the Midwest Poets Series. During this time, the series has hosted many different poets, including a few who ...

Robin Robertson

While working as a literary editor in London, Robin Robertson found himself losing the language of his native Scotland, so he has incorporated it into his poetry, including his book ...

Robin Robertson

Scottish poet, translator and editor Robin Robertson, a three-time winner of Britain's prestigious Forward Poetry Prize, talks with New Letters magazine editor Robert Stewart, while in Kansas City for Rockhurst University's 2015 Midwest P...

Dennis Finnell

Winner of the 2012 Bellday Prize for his fourth book of poetry, Pie 8, Dennis Finnell discusses his unique approach to composing this ...

Thomas E. Kennedy

The essay "I Am Joe's Prostate," by Thomas E. Kennedy garnered New Letters the National Magazine Award in the category of the essay in 2008. In this interview, Thomas E. Kenned...

Willis and Aliki Barnstone

Father/daughter poets Willis Barnstone and Aliki Barnstone, regular contributors to New Letters magazine, talk about how they influence each other's work. Aliki, who was named the Missouri Poet Laureate in June 2016, had her first book pu...

Dunya Mikhail

Poet and journalist Dunya Mikhail, a Kresge Fellow and winner of the Arab American Book Award, reads poetry from her three books: The War Works Hard,...

Kansas City Literary Events

Lauren Hunter & Erica Lewis

Saturday, August 26, 2017
Kansas City, Mo.

News

Tracy K. Smith has been named the next U.S. Poet Laureate!

Hear poetry from her Pulitzer Prize-winning book, Life on Mars, on the New Letters on the Air half-hour show or a short excerpt on KCUR before she was in Kansas City last year. Find out more about our new ambassador for poetry from NPR.

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Clarion Awards Selection CD Special

Jamaica KincaidJim ShepardGloria Vando & Anika ParisLuis Alberto Urrea, and Alex George, normally $7.99 per episode, this cd collection comes with over $15.00 in savings. Downloads of these programs have been reduced and are available through our archives.