An Author Asks: 'Can Poetry Save The Earth?'

John Felstiner

"If poems touch our full humanness, can they quicken awareness and bolster respect for this ravaged resilient earth we live on?" writes John Felstiner in Can Poetry Save the Earth? Linda A. Cicero/Stanford News Service hide caption

itoggle caption Linda A. Cicero/Stanford News Service

In his new book, Can Poetry Save the Earth?, Stanford professor John Felstiner presents poetry from dozens of English and American writers who have spoken passionately to — and for — the natural world.

We issued Felstiner a challenge: Pick just one poem that could save the world, if everyone were to read it. He chose "The Well Rising" — and couldn't help but pick some runners-up; two are featured below.

'The Well Rising'

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'Anacostia River'

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NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

'Hearing Your Words...'

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Copyright © 2010 NPR. All rights reserved. No quotes from the materials contained herein may be used in any media without attribution to NPR. This transcript is provided for personal, noncommercial use only, pursuant to our Terms of Use. Any other use requires NPR's prior permission. Visit our permissions page for further information.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by a contractor for NPR, and accuracy and availability may vary. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Please be aware that the authoritative record of NPR's programming is the audio.

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