Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments
A Foreigner Everywhere20170122 (BBC7)
20170123 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces a profile of poet Elizabeth Bishop.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits BBC's radio archive with a profile of poet Elizabeth Bishop.

In 'A Foreigner Everywhere', Paul Farley explores the American's extraordinary years in Brazil, and how her rootless, traveller's condition inspired her creativity.

Elizabeth Bishop has been called the poets' poets' poet', and her work, often complex and multi-layered, examines the big themes of home, travel and identity. Though she's regarded as an American poet, for nearly two decades Bishop lived in Brazil, where she wrote much of her best work. Essentially an orphan from the age of five, and a constant observer, a 'foreigner everywhere', she speaks to our modern rootless condition, asking how and where we find a sense of 'home'.

Paul explores how Bishop tackles questions of travel, and how she challenged approaches to other cultures in the early days of mass tourism. Bishop met the love of her life in Brazil, became deeply involved in the Brazilian political tumult of the 1960s, and made the trip of her life up the Amazon River. But her Brazil years also ended in tragedy.

In many ways a poet of our times, Paul explores how her often overlooked Brazil years offer a new way into Bishop's work and its relevance - a constant observer, portraying life in all its nuanced complexity.

Producer: Jo Wheeler

Made for BBC Radio 4 by Brook Lapping Productions and first broadcast in 2012.

A House Divided: The Poetry Of The American Civil War2011040320180708 (BBC7)
20180709 (BBC7)

Allan Gurganus considers the role of poetry in the American Civil War.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'A House Divided - American Civil War'.

The war inspired poets from Whitman to Dickinson. Southern author Allan Gurganus considers the role of poetry in understanding that conflict.

On the 12th of April 1861 Confederate forces attacked the US Military's Fort Sumter, thus beginning the bloodiest war in American history. It is this conflict, more than the American Revolution or Second World War that has had the most dramatic impact on the nation's character.

In a war of brother against brother; the conflict created a tragic human drama as the country struggled to define itself. America's most distinguished poets were affected by unprecedented levels of carnage. Herman Melville wrote a chronological, impressionistic volume of poetry on the Civil War.

Walt Whitman, a volunteer nurse during the war wrote heart-wrenching poems about wounded soldiers beside piles of amputated limbs. Emily Dickinson was most productive during this time, though she never wrote directly about the war. However, her meditations on death, violence and the bloody landscape provide a deep insight into the nation's character.

Featuring music and poetry from before, during and after the war.

Slaves like George Moses Horton who sold poetry in the hopes of buying his own freedom reflects on the meaning of liberty. Soldiers like Obediah Ethelbert Baker who wrote for his wife back home, talks about the righteousness of the Union cause. Northern abolitionist Quakers regale the noble Northern mission and the "poet laureate of the Confederacy", Henry Timrod, recalls the birth of a new nation.

Producer: Colin McNulty
A Whistledown Production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2011.

A Notebook On Aimă© Că©saire20160417 (BBC7)
20160418 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces A Notebook on Aimé Césaire, a portrait of Martinique's famous son.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'A Notebook on Aime Cesaire'

When poet and politician Aimé Césaire died at the age of 94 in 2008, it robbed the Caribbean island of Martinique of its most articulate and powerful voice. He was a prolific writer - of poetry, plays and essays - and served as Mayor of Martinique's capital Fort-de-France for over 50 years, as well as representing Martinique in the French National Assembly for 45 years. Aimé Césaire dedicated his life, in print and in public, to his people and his island.

Featuring Christian Lapousiniere, director of the CĂ©saire Study and Research Centre, filmmaker Euzhan Palcy, anthropologists Richard and Sally Price, and Dominique Taffin, director of the Martinique National Archive.

Includes readings by John Norton.

Producer: Martin Williams

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

A Poet's Song20170514 (BBC7)
20170515 (BBC7)

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra chooses A Poet's Song, with Paul Farley and Jo Shapcott.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'A Poet's Song' as Paul Farley and Jo Shapcott swap writing poems for song lyrics.

Are lyrics harder to write than poems? Every few years the subject of poetry and song lyrics rears its head. Has our need for the poetic been fulfilled by the musical? Paul and Jo try their hand at writing lyrics for two very different musicians - British rapper Doc Brown, and the singer/songwriter and pianist Jamie Cullum.

The programme follows the progress of these collaborations - recounting the highs and lows along the way - and reveals what musicians can learn from poets, and what poets can learn from their musical counterparts.

Producer: Ella-Mai Robey

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2008.

Adventures In Poetry - Not Waving But Drowning20160814 (BBC7)
20160815 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Adventures in Poetry featuring Stevie Smith and her powerful poem.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with an episode of Adventures in Poetry.

Peggy Reynolds asks what it is about Stevie Smith's poem 'Not Waving but Drowning' which has kept it relevant since 1957. The phrase itself turns up endlessly in newspapers, both red-tops and broadsheets, and is particularly loved by writers on sports pages - not, you might think, the obvious place to look for soul-searching poetry. But underneath the snappy economy of the first line runs a complex and universal emotional truth, examined here by a Samaritan, a sports writer and Stevie Smith's biographer.

Adventures in Poetry is a series focussing on classic poems whose lines or images have entered our national consciousness.

Producer: Christine Hall

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces Adventures in Poetry featuring Stevie Smith and her powerful poem Not Waving But Drowning. From December 2010.

Adventures In Poetry - The Farmer's Bride2018081220180813 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces a discussion of the poem of unrequited rural longing.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Adventures In Poetry - The Listeners20160821 (BBC7)
20160822 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces the classic poem The Listeners by Walter de la Mare.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces the classic poem The Listeners by Walter de la Mare. From November 2008.

Adventures In Poetry - Timothy Winters20170820 (BBC7)
20170821 (BBC7)

Peggy Reynolds explores the lasting appeal of Charles Causley's poem Timothy Winters.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Adventures in Poetry' featuring Charles Causley's poem 'Timothy Winters'.

A programme from the series that explores the background, effect and lasting appeal of some well-loved poems.

Producer: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2006.

Asj Tessimond20170716 (BBC7)
20170717 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces 'Lost Voices': ASJ Tessimond, the Birkenhead poet.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Lost Voices: ASJ Tessimond'.

Poet Brian Patten showcases the undeservedly forgotten poet Arthur Seymour John Tessimond - known to his friends as Tessy - who died in 1962.

The details of his life are now almost entirely consigned to oblivion, but his poetry lives on, largely in anthologies or as requests on Poetry Please, and Brian Patten was determined to find out as much as he could about the man who wrote some beautiful poetry about love. And cats. And, oddly, Luton.

For a man who never found the love he dreamed of, he was conspicuously tenacious in looking for it - but, as a Tessimond researcher explains in Lost Voices, he had a fatal tendency to seek love from unsuitable women - chorus girls and nightclub hostesses. Nevertheless, Tessimond is clearly a man who inspired affection - what will Brian make of Tessy?

Poems read by Nigel Anthony.
Producer: Christine Hall.
First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

Ask Me: The Poetry Of William Stafford20170501 (BBC7)

Katrina Porteous talks to the people who knew the extraordinarily prolific poet.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Ask Me - the Poetry of William Stafford'.

William Stafford's achievement is extraordinary. He wrote over 20,000 poems, 4,000 of which have been published, in more than 80 books and 2,000 periodicals. But it's the quality of his work that distinguishes him. Stafford was the poetry consultant to the Library of Congress - the post that became the Poet Laureate of the United States, for years he was Oregon's Laureate and he won the National Book Award.

Stafford was born in Kansas in 1914, growing up during the Depression. A conscientious objector, he spent the Second World War in camps, working in forestry. Too exhausted after work he took to rising early to write, and he continued this practice of daily writing until his death in 1993. For Stafford it was the act of writing that mattered most. Writers who got stuck he advised to, "Lower your standards - and carry on."

His poems are mostly short and accessible, but acquire great depth. They can be tough, too. He was sensitive to landscape, people, animals, nature and history. So it's not surprising that Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath were both admirers.

Poet Katrina Porteous visits Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon, where for decades Stafford taught, wrote and developed his ideas. His son Kim takes her to the huge William Stafford Archive, as Katrina hears recordings of his readings, meets people who knew him, and students and poets he continues to influence. And she goes out into the wilderness of Oregon to investigate and reflect on the life, outlook and work of this great American poet.

Producer: Julian May
First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2014.

Batter My Heart: Growing Up And Growing Old With John Donne2014081020181028 (BBC7)
20181029 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces Batter My Heart: Growing Up and Growing Old with John Donne.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Beacons And Blue Remembered Hills20160619 (BBC7)
20160620 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Beacons and Blue Remembered Hills - the poetry of AE Housman.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Beacons and Blue Remembered Hills'.

An examination of the enduring popularity of AE Housman in a journey through the Shropshire of his most famous sequence of poems.

Actor, poet and broadcaster Elvis McGonagall (aka Richard Smith) takes Housman's longest sequence (written when he was in London) to the places that the poet was remembering as he explored some of the themes at the core of his work. At the heart of 'A Shropshire Lad' is a real sense of Englishness, unusual in a collection that concerns itself with personal and political themes in such a raw and vulnerable way - loss, grief, suicide, sexuality, nature and joy. What did the settings of 'A Shropshire Lad' - Shropshire and Worcestershire - mean to Housman?

Elvis visits many of the locations that inspired Housman's verse - London, Bromsgrove, Bredon Hill, Ludlow, The Wrekin and talks to people along the way about these evocative landscapes, asking them to read their favourite poems on the way.

Contributors include Andrew Motion, Martin Newell, Wendy Cope, Colin Dexter, Antique Roadshow's Henry Sandon and the many Housman fans of Worcestershire and Shropshire. Elvis attempts to meet Housman himself, listens to the bells of Bredon, goes in search of the loveliest of cherry trees and even finds poetry in a Brewery.

Producer: Frank Stirling

An Unique production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2011.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces Beacons and Blue Remembered Hills - the poetry of AE Housman. With Elvis McGonagall. From September 2011.

Benjamin Zephaniah/gavin Ewart2008021620180506 (BBC7)
20180507 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra celebrates Benjamin Zephaniah at 60 with an edition of Time for Verse.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive to select two programmes:

To mark his colleague's 60th birthday - Time for Verse with Benjamin Zephaniah - reading his poems and talking to Carol Ann Duffy (the current Poet Laureate). From 1991.

Time for Verse with Gavin Ewart - a poet who fought in the Second World War - in conversation with George MacBeth. From 1998.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4.

Betjeman20171001 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects programmes featuring John Betjeman.

Between The Ears: Crex Crex20170710 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Between the Ears with Kathleen Jamie.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Between the Ears: Crex, Crex', featuring a poem to a special bird.

Kathleen Jamie, poet and birder, travels to the Isle of Coll to hear male corncrakes as they "crex crex" their way through the Hebridean summer night. She enlists the help of the birds themselves, the island's RSPB warden Sarah Money and the Coll Drummers.

Producer: Tim Dee
First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2004.

Blake Morrison And Glyn Maxwell1999082920180520 (BBC7)
20180521 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces Blake Morrison and Glyn Maxwell on themes of identity.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Fine Lines' with Blake Morrison and Glyn Maxwell.

Poets Blake and Glyn discuss their different approaches to shaping a new collection of poems.

Presented by Christopher Cook.

Producer: Melanie Harris

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1999.

Broken Paradise20170625 (BBC7)
20170626 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces 'Broken Paradise' - poetry from Sri Lanka's bitter civil war.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Broken Paradise' featuring poetry from Sri Lanka's bitter civil war.

To mark the fourth anniversary of the ending of Sri Lanka's civil war, in May 2009, translator Lakshmi Holmström introduces some of the most powerful Tamil poetry to emerge from the 26 year long conflict, in which an estimated 70,000 people were killed as militant Tamil Tigers fought to establish a separate Tamil state in the north of the island.

These poems bear witness to the atrocities committed by both sides and reflect on some of the war's most significant turning points, from the deadly introduction of female suicide bombers to the final bloody showdown on a beach near Jaffna, where government forces conclusively defeated the Tamil Tigers.

Poets featured include Cheran, probably the most significant living Tamil poet and a former journalist now exiled in Canada, whose poems chart the history of the war and of a landscape once idyllic, now devastated. There is also a poem by S. Sivaramani, a promising young woman poet who committed suicide in 1991. In Oppressed by Nights of War she describes the impact of the violence and fear on children.

Presenter Lakshmi Holmström MBE is a widely acclaimed translator of Tamil fiction and poetry. A collection of her translations of Cheran's poetry is to be published this summer, titled In a Time of Burning.

Readings by Hiran Abeysekara, Vayu Naidu and Vignarajan

Producer: Mukti Jain Campion

A Culture Wise production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2013.

Cold War Poet20160508 (BBC7)
20160509 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra on how Dylan Thomas' poetry sustained a generation of East Germans.

Made for 4 Extra. Daljit Nagra introduces Cold War Poet, exploring how Dylan Thomas' poetry sustained a generation of East Germans. From October 2014.

Contemporary American Poets - Charles Simic And Louise Gluck20160807 (BBC7)
20160808 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Postscript: Contemporary American Poets featuring Gluck and Simic.

Daljit Nagra introduces Postscript: Contemporary American Poets featuring Americans Louise Gluck and Charles Simic. From July 1999.

Coward, The Poet20080824 (BBC7)
20160911 (BBC7)
20160912 (BBC7)

Friends and fans discuss a selection of Noel Coward's poems.

A regularly overlooked aspect of Noel Coward's remarkable career is the significant amount of poetry he wrote throughout his life. Friends and fans including Anna Massey, Imogen Stubbs, Alistair McGowan discuss a selection of his poems, offering a unique insight into a deeper and somewhat darker aspect of Coward's personal life.

Crazy For Love - Layla And The Mad Poet20160515 (BBC7)
20160516 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Crazy for Love, one of the greatest Middle East love stories.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Crazy for Love - Layla and the Mad Poet'.

The inspiration for Eric Clapton's seminal pop song, 'Layla and Majnun' is said to be the most beautiful poem in the Arab world and beyond.

Pre-empting Romeo and Juliet by centuries, Layla and Majnun is the classic Middle East love story. Sitting at the heart of pre-Islamic Arab culture, its message is universal and it has since crossed borders and transcended language barriers even spreading as far as India and Turkey.

Based on a tale of thwarted love and poetry sent on the wind, Anthony Sattin tells the tale of its creator - Majnun - whose name is the word for 'mad' or 'crazy' in Arabic and tries to find out if he, or the object of his love, were real or imagined, fact or fiction.

Producer: Sara Jane Hall.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

Crex Crex20170709 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Between the Ears with Kathleen Jamie.

Dannie Abse - Time For Verse Eps 2-3/52018092320180924 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra chooses Time for Verse featuring Dannie Abse, GP, memoir writer and poet

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

David Walliams On Philip Larkin20160529 (BBC7)
20160530 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces David Walliams on Philip Larkin.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with David Walliams on Philip Larkin.

Actor David Walliams is a great admirer of Philip Larkin's poetry, and to mark the 25th anniversary of the poet's death, he talked to former Poet Laureate Andrew Motion, who wrote a widely acclaimed biography of Larkin, about why he finds this poetry so appealing.

Walliams chooses a selection of the poems he likes best, some well-known and some far less so, to explore the central themes that recur throughout Larkin's work. It's a fascinating three-way meeting of minds: the actor, the biographer and the poet they both admire.

The poems are read by Philip Larkin, Tom Courtenay and Patrick Romer.

Producer: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

Derek Mahon20161023 (BBC7)
20161024 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces the work of the contemporary Irish poet Derek Mahon.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive to highlight the work of Derek Mahon.

Regarded as one of our finest poets writing today, Derek Mahon - born in Belfast in 1941 - talks to Peter Brooke about his background and his attitude to his work.

Producer: Kathryn Porter

First broadcast on BBC Radio Ulster in 1984.

Dunstanburgh Castle: A Secret As Old As The Stones20170423 (BBC7)
20170424 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Katrina Porteus' work about the mysterious castle on the coast.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Dunstanburgh Castle: A Secret as Old as the Stone'.

Featuring the sounds of Dunstanburgh Castle in Northumberland, recorded by poet Katrina Porteous, and drawing on local myth and memories of Scottish raids and the ideal of good lordship.

Performed by Trevor Fox and the children of Seahouses First School.

Producer: Julian May

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2004.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Dunstanburgh Castle: A Secret as Old as the Stone'.

Featuring the sounds of Dunstanburgh Castle in Northumberland, recorded by poet Katrina Porteous, and drawing on local myth and memories of Scottish raids and the ideal of good lordship.

Performed by Trevor Fox and the children of Seahouses First School.

Producer: Julian May

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2004.

Electric Polyolbion20170115 (BBC7)
20170116 (BBC7)

Poet and broadcaster Paul Farley's envisages Michael Drayton's Poly-Olbion.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Electric Polyolbion.

Part-poetry and part-national topological survey with a rich seam of encounters along the way, Paul Farley reimagines Michael Drayton's sprawling, extraordinary Poly-Olbion, first published in 1612.

The term Poly-Olbion suggests 'many Albions', the plurality of place, and Drayton described his own project as "...a chorographicall (sic) description of tracts, rivers, mountains, forests, and other parts of this renowned isle... with intermixture of the most remarkable stories, antiquities, wonders, rarities, pleasures and commodities of the same."

Drayton's Poly-Olbion is a remarkable poem: 30,000 lines, arranged in 30 sections or 'songs', describing the geography and history of England and Wales county by county. References to place are clear and precise.

The Electric Poly-Olbion follows the same topographies as Drayton's work, and Paul uses its precursor to create a new version out of our contemporary landscape that incorporates and synthesizes historical, scientific, political, literary, pop-cultural and autobiographical dimensions into the imaginative region of the long poem.

As he travels the country and meeting other local writers along the way, Paul writes his own long form verse in and around the places and references of Drayton's original: the same landscapes, two wildly different time frames.

Producer: Simon Hollis

Made for BBC Radio 4 by Brook Lapping Productions. First broadcast in 2010.

Ezra Caged20161016 (BBC7)
20161017 (BBC7)

Poet in Residence Daljit Nagra introduces Ezra Caged, presented by Jeremy Harding.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Ezra Caged.

Jeremy Harding reads and explores the Pisan Cantos, the poems written by the American Modernist poet Ezra Pound during his time in prison in Italy at the end of the Second World War.

He had been arrested towards the end of the war after making pro-Mussolini radio broadcasts, and for a time was held in a wire cage at a detention camp near Pisa. It was in these conditions that he drafted what have gone on to be regarded as the finest section of his long Cantos sequence.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in July 2008.

Fine Lines - David Dabydeen And Katrina Porteous20170910 (BBC7)
20170911 (BBC7)

Poet-in-residence Daljit Nagra chooses Fine Lines with David Dabydeen and Katrina Porteous

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Fine Lines' featuring poets, David Dabydeen and Katrina Porteous,

David and Katrina talk to Christopher Cook about their connection to the sea. David Dabydeen sees it as an historical archive whilst for Katrina Porteous, the sea is a source of life and a living for the fishermen of Northumberland.

Producer: Melanie Harris.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1999.

Fine Lines - Hugo Williams And Amanda Dalton20170806 (BBC7)
20170807 (BBC7)

Hugo Williams and Amanda Dalton talk about their contrasting experiences of school.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Fine Lines': featuring Hugo Williams and Amanda Dalton

Christopher Cook's guest poets discuss how their contrasting experiences of school influenced their work.

Producer: Lindsay Leonard.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2000.

Fine Lines - Seamus Heaney20170604 (BBC7)
20170605 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses chooses 'Fine Lines' with Nobel Prize-winning writer Seamus Heaney.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Fine Lines' showcasing Seamus Heaney.

Nobel Prize-winning poet Seamus Heaney talks about his book, Electric Light, which travels widely in time and space visiting sites of the classical world and revisiting the poet's childhood. Presented by Christopher Cook.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2001.

Fine Lines - Tony Harrison And Sean O'brien20170416 (BBC7)
20170417 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Fine Lines, featuring Tony Harrison and Sean O'Brien.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Fine Lines' featuring Tony Harrison and Sean O'Brien.

Poets Tony and Sean are in conversation with Christopher Cook in Newcastle.

Fine Lines was a series looking at contemporary poetry,

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Fine Lines' featuring Tony Harrison and Sean O'Brien.

Poets Tony and Sean are in conversation with Christopher Cook in Newcastle.

Fine Lines was a series looking at contemporary poetry,

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

Fine Lines- Selima Hill And Matthew Sweeney20170611 (BBC7)
20170612 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Fine Lines with writers Selima Hill and Matthew Sweeney.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Fine Lines' with Selima Hill and Matthew Sweeney.

Tales of surreal suitcases, flying wardrobes and a bizarre poker game with a corpse. Poetry and conversation with Christopher Cook and Whitbread poetry prize winner, Selima Hill, and Irish poet Matthew Sweeney.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2002.

Fine Lines: Linda France And Roy Fisher20170730 (BBC7)
20170731 (BBC7)

Christopher Cook and his guests look at the connections between jazz and poetry.

Grace Nichols1997051020180429 (BBC7)
20180430 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces 'Stanza on Stage', featuring the poetry of Grace Nichols.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Stanza on Stage' featuring the poetry of Grace Nichols.

Grace talks to Simon Armitage about her long poem 'Sunris', which she reads with John Agard as Montezuma and accompanying steel drum music by Aubrey Bryan.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1997.

Gwyneth Lewis - How To Knit A Poem 1/220170219 (BBC7)
20170220 (BBC7)

Gwyneth Lewis explores the appeal of the craft in How to Knit a Poem.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive of Gwyneth Lewis in 'How To Knit A Poem'.

Considering the poem to be as complex as a piece of woven material - in the first of two programmes, Gwyneth gets to grips with the craft - as she looks at the links between knitting, poetry and the wider world, as well as writing some new poems.

Producer: Penny Arnold

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2006.

Gwyneth Lewis - How To Knit A Poem 2/220170226 (BBC7)
20170227 (BBC7)

Gwyneth Lewis connects maths, knitting and poetry.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive of Gwyneth Lewis in 'How To Knit A Poem'.

With more from her original series, poet Gwyneth asks what is scientific about knitting and hears how artists are using knitting to challenge preconceptions about society.

Producer Penny Arnold

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2006.

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra chooses How to Knit a Poem in which Gwyneth Lewis connects maths, knitting and poetry. From 2006.

Helen Dunmore And Dannie Abse2018060320180604 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces The Verb featuring Helen Dunmore and Time for Verse: Dannie Abse.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with two selections:

To mark one year after her death - The Verb featuring Helen Dunmore in conversation with Ian McMillan about her award winning poem 'The Malarkey'.

Producer - Faith Lawrence.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2012

And Time for Verse: with Dannie Abse interviewed by George MacBeth.

Producer: Alec Reid

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1988.

'how Do I Love Thee... ?' By Eb Browning1999040420180527 (BBC7)
20180528 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra features the sonnet by Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Adventures in Poetry - How do I love thee?' The love poem by Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

Peggy Reynolds counts the ways in which the nation's favourite love poem, Browning 's Sonnet 43 from the Portuguese, has had a lasting impact.

Producer: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

I'm A Lumberjack20170326 (BBC7)
20170327 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses 'I'm A Lumberjack' featuring peripatetic Englishman James Lasdun.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'I'm A Lumberjack' featuring peripatetic English writer, James Lasdun.

When James moved to wooded New York State his wife gave him a chainsaw. He had to either learn to chop down trees or risk his home and garden being taken over by the resurgent forests of the eastern states of the USA.

But how should a clumsy townee, good with his words but not with his hands, take to the woods? With help from some of the champion axemen of the Lumberjack World Championships at Hayward, Wisconsin, he learns the underhand chop, the standing block chop, the hot saw, and much of the wisdom and lore of the world of tall trees and tough men.

Produced in Bristol by Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2012.

It's Just Like Watching Brazil1998081720180715 (BBC7)
20180716 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra selects the verse written by Ian MacMillan and featuring Barnsley FC.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'It's Just Like Watching Brazil'.

Written in verse by Ian MacMillan, this drama documentary charts Barnsley Football Club's first season in the Premiership League.

With Barrie Rutter and Michelle Hardwick.

Producer: Marc Jobst

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

Jean Binta Breeze And John Cooper Clarke2002031720180617 (BBC7)
20180618 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Fine Lines: Jean Binta Breeze and John Cooper Clarke.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

John Betjeman - Poets On Music And Let's Find Out20171002 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects programmes featuring John Betjeman.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive to showcase the work of Sir John Betjeman (1906-1984) who was made the UK's Poet Laureate in 1972. Featuring:

Poets on Music presented by Elaine Padmore. First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 1974

Let's Find Out hosted by Peter Haigh and featuring teenagers pitching questions to the poet John Betjeman. First broadcast on the BBC Light Programme in 1962.

John Clare: Under The Influence And Thinking On Their Feet20170402 (BBC7)
20170403 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses the poetry of John Clare.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Under The Influence' and 'Thinking On Their Feet' - featuring the poetry of John Clare.

* Under The Influence:

Alison Brackenbury describes how her lifelong admiration of Northamptonshire poet John Clare has influenced her own verse. First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2009.

* Thinking On Their Feet:

Novelist Richard Francis walks in the footsteps of the poet John Clare and visits Helpston in Northamptonshire. Joined by academic and writer Simon Koveshi, they discuss John's life and work and how walking helped inspire his poetry. First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2002.

Ko Un - The People's Poet Of Korea20160403 (BBC7)
20160404 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra looks abroad for inspiration and introduces Ko Un - People's Poet of Korea.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Ko Un - The People's Poet of Korea'

In South Korea, former Zen monk Ko Un is revered as the people's poet. To mark his 80th birthday, Mike Greenwood explored his prolific output, in particular his epic masterwork, Ten Thousand Lives (Maninbo), in which he has written a poem about everyone he has ever met. Conceived when he was imprisoned in the 1980s for rebelling against the military dictatorships then controlling South Korea, Maninbo has been published in 30 volumes in Korean. Now, for the first time, the first 10 volumes have been translated into English.

Producer: Eve Streeter

A Pier production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2013.

Landmark Poetics2015032920180722 (BBC7)
20180723 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Lemn Sissay's meditations on the public role of poetry outdoors.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

An exploration of the increasing amount of poetry in Britain's outdoors.

In the early 90s, for a bet, Lemn wrote a poem for one of his favourite pubs - Hardy's Well in Rusholme, Manchester. Since then, he and many other poets have written more and more for public spaces in Britain - both urban and rural. Travelling to Hebden Bridge, Little Sparta in Lanarkshire, Manchester and London, he asks what these poems are doing in the outdoors, if they really belong there, and who they are for?

Interviews include Simon Armitage talking about the Stanza Stones poems he wrote for the Pennine Watershed, text artist Robert Montgomery, Canal Laureate of the UK Jo Bell, and the letter carver Pip Hall.

Producer: Philippa Geering
Sound Design: Charlie Brandon-King

A Unique production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2015.

Lindisfarne: Poetry In Progress2013102720180902 (BBC7)
20180903 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces the responses of twelve poets to the Lindisfarne Gospel.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Lost Voices - Anne Ridler20170917 (BBC7)
20170918 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Anne Ridler, presented by Brian Patten and read by Juliet Stevenson.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Lost Voices: Anne Ridler'.

Brian Patten explores the life and poetry of Anne Ridler, whose quiet and lucid observations of 20th century life are often overlooked.

Born into a literary family, Anne's early employment with the publisher Faber meant that she was working to TS Eliot. Her work, however, is very much in her own distinctive voice: quiet, contemplative, but acute in its observation.

Juliet Stevenson reads a selection of Anne Ridler's poems on themes of the natural world, relationships, the rhythms of human life.

Producer: Christine Hall

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2011.

Lost Voices - Dom Moraes20160228 (BBC7)
20160229 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Lost Voices featuring Indian poet Dom Moraes.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

'Lost Voices' features Dom Moraes - who arrived in 1950s Soho as an exotic novelty, a beautiful Indian-born poet with a classical English education. He quickly found an outrageous and untameable muse, Henrietta. Their married life together was stormy and ended with Dom literally walking out to buy a packet of cigarettes and moving back to India.

When Brian Patten met him and his third wife there in the mid-1980s, Dom had achieved a kind of peace, but in truth he seemed to be a man who was never quite at home either in India or England. Brian tells Dom's story and presents a selection of his poetry.

Producer: Christine Hall

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in April 2009.

Lost Voices - Molly Holden20170618 (BBC7)
20170619 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Lost Voices featuring image maker Molly Holden.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Lost Voices' showcasing Molly Holden.

From her early youth to her death in 1981, Molly Holden was an acute, unsentimental but lyrical poet of the natural world. She was influenced by Hardy and Edward Thomas but her poetry was distinctively her own. Her inspiration was topography, archaeology and the ties of the present world with the past.

Molly delighted in the outdoors and it was a huge blow when Multiple Sclerosis first slowed her down, then put her in a wheelchair. She continued to write about the world she could see from her window but increasingly the cruel reality of her situation became evident in her poetry.

Written and presented by Brian Patten.The readers are Annette Badland and Nigel Anthony.

Produced in Bristol by Christine Hall.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

Lost Voices - Patricia Beer20170903 (BBC7)
20170904 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Brian Patten's re-evaluation of the work of Patricia Beer.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Lost Voices: Patricia Beer'.

A fresh evaluation of the work of Patricia Beer by Brian Patten. Her strong, clear poetic voice grew out of a life menaced by insecurity and anger. Her friend, the poet Elaine Feinstein, and her niece, the novelist Patricia Duncker, consider the woman and the poetry.

Producer Christine Hall

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2011.

Lost Voices - Rosemary Tonks20160306 (BBC7)
20160307 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Lost Voices featuring Rosemary Tonks.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

'Lost Voices' features Rosemary Tonks. For a female poet in the 1960s Rosemary Tonks was unusually candid about adventures in steamy cafes and illicit hotel bedrooms. She published two extraordinary books of poetry which were heavily influenced by the eroticism of 19th century French poets. And then she fell silent. By the end of the 1970s, she'd disappeared from public life. Brian Patten talks to some other poets about Tonks's writing and asks if it has survived the 1960s. Then, right at the end of the programme, he receives some new information.

Producer: Christine Hall

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2009.

Lost Voices - Wh Davies20160221 (BBC7)
20160222 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Lost Voices featuring the travelling, nature-loving poet WH Davies

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

'Lost Voices' features WH Davies - a very successful poet in the early 20th century, but now remembered, if at all, for one poem - What is this life if full of care, We have no time to stand and stare. But as Brian Patten explains, Davies lived an amazing life as a traveller, a tramp, a dreamer and a lover of the natural world. All this is reflected in his poetry which was admired at the time by George Bernard Shaw and Edward Thomas and which later inspired the 15 year old Brian Patten to write.

Producer: Christine Hall

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in March 2009.

Lyrical Ballads - 1/5 The Nature Of Inspiration20161106 (BBC7)
20161107 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces a double act in poetry and selects Postscript - Lyrical Ballads.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with a rare double-act in poetry.

October 1798 saw the publication of one of the foundations of British romanticism: Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads. Steve Connor begins his exploration of why this slim volume made such a profound impression on English literature and thought.

Producers: Julian May and Abigail Appleton.

First broadcast on Radio 3 in October 1998.

Lyrical Ballads - 3/5 Poverty And Politics20161120 (BBC7)
20161121 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra continues with a rare double act in poetry.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Poverty and Politics.

Steve Connor explores the effect on English literature and thought of Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads.

Producers: Julian May and Abigail Appleton.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in October 1998.

Lyrical Ballads - 3/5 The Language Of Man20161120 (BBC7)

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra continues with a rare double act in poetry and selects Postscript - Lyrical Ballads. From October 1998.

Lyrical Ballads - 4/5 Conversation And Collaboration20161127 (BBC7)
20161128 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Postscript - Lyrical Ballads: Conversation and Collaboration.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Conversation and Collaboration.

Steve Connor explores the effect on English literature and thought of Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads.

Producers: Julian May and Abigail Appleton.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in October 1998.

Lyrical Ballads - 5/5 Man And Nature20161204 (BBC7)
20161205 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Postscript - Lyrical Ballads: Man and Nature.

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra selects Postscript - Lyrical Ballads: Man and Nature presented by Steve Connor. From October 1998.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Man and Nature.

Steve Connor concludes his exploration of the effect on English literature and thought of Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads.

Producers: Julian May and Abigail Appleton.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in October 1998.

Lyrical Ballads - Children And Childhood20161113 (BBC7)
20161114 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra revisits Lyrical Ballads: Children and Childhood presented by Steve Connor.

Poet in Residence Daljit Nagra revisits Lyrical Ballads: Children and Childhood presented by Steve Connor. From October 1998.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Children and Childhood.

Steve Connor explores the effect on English literature and thought of Wordsworth and Coleridge's Lyrical Ballads.

Producers: Julian May and Abigail Appleton.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in October 1998.

Lyrical Ballads - The Nature Of Inspiration
Maadai-kara2009010420181007 (BBC7)
20181008 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra chooses Maadai-Kara, an ancient Siberian tale from oral folklore.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Maadai-kara20181007

Poet Daljit Nagra chooses Maadai-Kara, an ancient Siberian tale from oral folklore.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Maadai-kara20181008
Michael Longley20161030 (BBC7)
20161031 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Poet of the Month, Michael Longley, presented by Clive Wilmer.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with a profile of Michael Longley.

In Poet of the Month, Michael Longley in conversation with Clive Wilmer, about his poetry career and collection of poems, Gorse Fires

Producer: Fiona McLean

First broadcast on Radio 3 in June 1991.

National Poetry Day 201620161002 (BBC7)
20161003 (BBC7)

Sarah Howe, Maura Dooley and Denise Riley join Daljit Nagra to mark National Poetry Day.

Made for 4 Extra. Poets Sarah Howe, Maura Dooley and Denise Riley join our Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra to celebrate National Poetry Day 2016.

Nobody Told Me To Oil My Boots20170205 (BBC7)
20170206 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Nobody Told Me To Oil My Boots, presented by Sir Antony Sher.

4 Extra Debut. Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra introduces Nobody Told Me To Oil My Boots, presented by Sir Antony Sher. From November 2008.

No-one Left And No-one Came20170409 (BBC7)
20170410 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Edward Thomas's No-One Left and No-One Came.

Edward Thomas died exactly 100 years ago on the battlefields of the First World War. To commemorate that moment, BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Thomas's uneventful poem about inactivity and solitude 'No One Left and No One Came'.

In Edward Thomas's poem Adlestrop a train stops, there's a hiss of steam, someone clears his throat and a blackbird sings. And that's it. Yet this 16 line poem is one of the best-loved in English, inspiring articles, pilgrimages to the Cotswold village and many other poems. Anne Harvey tells the story of how it came to be written and explores the fascination of a short poem in which nothing happens but which deals with large themes: memory, time, naming, sound - and fear.

Producer: Julian May

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2001.

Norn But Not Forgotten - Sounds Of Shetland20171015 (BBC7)
20171016 (BBC7)

Kathleen Jamie discovers the appeal of the local dialect for poets in the Shetland Islands

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Norn But Not Forgotten, Sounds of Shetland'.

The dialect of the Shetland Islands is one of the most distinctive spoken within the British Isles: heavily accented, and studded with words left over from the now extinct Norn language which was spoken on the islands until the late 18th century. Even now, reaching for expressions to describe the natural world, places, the seasons of the year, food, tools, colours, moods or states of agitation or excitement, Shetlanders will often use Norn words.

Kathleen Jamie visits Shetland to meet up with the poets who revel in the language, both those born on the island and those who've moved there.

Shetland, and its distinctive accents and words, has proved surprisingly receptive to poets from mainland Scotland and England who have chosen to make it home. What is it about the Shetland dialect that so excites and fascinates poets? Kathleen asks the TS Eliot award-winning poet Jen Hadfield, who was born in Cheshire, and Raman Mundair, who was born in Ludhiana in India and came to live in Glasgow at the age of five, about choosing to write about Shetland's distinctive landscape, people and way of life in its own tongue.

Kathleen also meets acclaimed Shetland language poet Christine De Luca who was raised on the island and who has made the opposite journey, leaving the rugged landscape of the island to live and work on the mainland.

Rich with the sounds - and not just the language - of the islands, Kathleen Jamie explores how this dense linguistic community has managed to excite and engage some of Britain's leading poets.

Producer: Mark Rickards

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

North: Catherine Heaney On Seamus Heaney2018090920180910 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra talks to Catherine Heaney about her father. Plus 'North' with Seamus Heaney.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Daljit Nagra welcomes Catherine Heaney into 4 Extra's Poetry Extra studio to discuss life growing up with her father, the Nobel Prize winning poet Seamus Heaney.

And we hear 'North' featuring Seamus Heaney, first broadcast on BBC Radio Ulster in 1975.

Producer: Sarah Wade

Made for BBC Radio 4 Extra and first broadcast in September 2018.
Daljit Nagra welcomes Catherine Heaney into 4 Extra's Poetry Extra studio to discuss life growing up with her father, the Nobel Prize winning poet Seamus Heaney.

And we hear 'North' featuring Seamus Heaney, first broadcast on BBC Radio Ulster in 1975.

Producer: Sarah Wade

Made for BBC Radio 4 Extra and first broadcast in September 2018.

Oh What A Lively War20101114 (BBC7)
20160605 (BBC7)
20160606 (BBC7)

Martin Sorrell explores the work of French First World War poet Guillaume Apollinaire.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits BBC radio's poetry archive with 'Oh What a Lively War' profiling First World War poet, Guillaume Apollinaire.

One of the most famous lines in French poetry was written by Guillaume Apollinaire in the summer of 1915. His "Ah Dieu! que la guerre est jolie" is roughly translated as "Oh! What a lovely war!", but unlike the famous English musical, Apollinaire's line was devoid of irony. Here was a young poet revelling in the excitement, the sheer modernism, of warfare. It's a sentiment very much at odds with our British legacy of war poetry from that time, and it's one that Martin Sorrell, translator of Apollinaire, unpicks with Professors Susan Harrow and Tim Kendall, and American poet Brian Turner, who served in the US army in Iraq.

Apollinaire was already a well-known poet and leading champion of Cubism when he enlisted in December 1914. His war came to an end in March 1916, when he received a shrapnel wound to the head. He was invalided out, trepanned, made only a partial recovery, and died in November 1918, almost the same day as Wilfred Owen,

His early war poetry of 1914 and 1915 is infused with the marvel and spectacle of war, and continues the experiments with form that made him one of France's great literary innovators. It also celebrates his rich, complicated love life. His letters to the two women with whom he was simultaneously involved are fascinating records of a passionate patriot and an equally passionate lover. It was only as the war progressed and he experienced his own horrifying injury that the poems began to recognise the misery of the trenches and horror of technological warfare.

Reader: Paul McGann

Producer: Sara Davies

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

One of the most famous lines in French poetry was written by Guillaume Apollinaire in the summer of 1915. His "Ah Dieu! que la guerre est jolie" can be roughly translated into English as "Oh! What a lovely war!", but unlike the famous English musical, Apollinaire's line was devoid of irony. Here was a young poet revelling in the excitement, the sheer modernism, of warfare. It's a sentiment very much at odds with our British legacy of war poetry from that time, and it's one that Martin Sorrell, translator of Apollinaire, unpicks in this programme with the help of Professors Susan Harrow and Tim Kendall, and the American poet Brian Turner, who served in the US army in Iraq.

His early war poetry, written in 1914 and 1915, is infused witrh the marvel and spectacle of war, and continues the experiments with form that made him one of France's great literary innovators. It also celebrates his rich, complicated love life, pursued as and when possible. His letters to the two women with whom he was simultaneously involved are fascinating records of a passionate patriot and an equally passionate lover. It was only as the war progressed and he experienced his own horrifying injury that the poems began to recognise the misery of the trenches and the horror of technological warfare.

Apollinaire's poems are read by Paul McGann

Presenter Martin Sorrell is Emeritus Professor of Modern Languages at Exeter University.

Produced by Sara Davies.

Paul Celan In Mapesbury Road20160522 (BBC7)
20160523 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Paul Celan in Mapesbury Road - Europe's master elegist.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Paul Celan in Mapesbury Road'.

What brought one of the most compelling modern European poets to a perfectly ordinary street in North London? Who did he visit there? And what made him write a poem about the experience? Writer Toby Litt investigates this most improbable of brief encounters between Paul Celan, the master elegist of 20th century Jewish experience and Britain at the end of the Sixties.

Producer: Zahid Warley

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2010.

Paul Durcan - Christmas Day20161211 (BBC7)
20161212 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Paul Durcan's reading of his poem Christmas Day.

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra selects Paul Durcan's reading of his poem Christmas Day. From 1997.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Paul Durcan's Christmas Day.

In three parts, Paul begins reading his book-length poem that sets out a funny, sweetly sad and often irreverent vision of Christmas.

Accustomed to loneliness, Paul accepts his friend Frank's invitation for Christmas lunch.

First broadcast on Radio 3 in December 1997.

Paul Durcan - Christmas Day 2/320161218 (BBC7)
20161219 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Paul Durcan's reading of his poem Christmas Day.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Paul Durcan's Christmas Day.

Paul continues reading from his book-length poem that sets out a funny, sweetly sad and often irreverent vision of Christmas.

Paul and his friend Frank continue their melancholic and often subversive Christmas afternoon conversation.

First broadcast on Radio 3 in December 1997.

Paul Durcan - Christmas Day 3/320161225 (BBC7)
20161226 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects the final part of Paul Durcan's reading of his poem 'Christmas Day'.

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra selects the final part of Paul Durcan's reading of his poem 'Christmas Day'. From 1997.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Paul Durcan's Christmas Day.

Paul continues reading from hi book-length poem that sets out a funny, sweetly sad and often irreverent vision of Christmas.

After Christmas lunch, Paul returns to his empty home, and his thoughts range across his life.

First broadcast on Radio 3 in December 1997.

Poems From The Pennines20170312 (BBC7)
20170313 (BBC7)

Poet Simon Armitage takes us on a journey to the Stanza Stones.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Poems From The Pennines'.

Poet Simon Armitage walks the route of his 'Stanza Stones' - a series of commissioned poems carved into six stones along the Watershed of the Pennine moorland from Marsden to Ilkley in West Yorkshire. The poems take the theme of water in six different states - rain, mist, snow, puddle, dew, and beck and look at our relationship with water and our moorland. The area is close to Simon Armitage's heart as he grew up in Marsden and still lives locally.

Simon talks about the creative process of writing the poetry and the challenge of writing poems that may be read on the moors for a thousand years to come. He also reveals the history of people carving words on the rocks on the moors and looks at the nature of our relationship with water.

Producer: Laura Parfitt

Made for BBC Radio 4 by White Pebble Media and first heard in 2012.

Poet Of Albion20160925 (BBC7)
20160926 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra on the life of the radical London artist and poet, William Blake.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with The Poet of Albion.

Jenny Uglow presents a profile of Wiliam Blake. Widely misrepresented as a patriotic conformist, the great poet was a passionate dissident, a political artist deeply at odds with his country whose ideas were formed by the turbulent history of the time.

Contributors include Blake's biographer Peter Ackroyd and poet and critic Tom Paulin.

Producers: Susan Marling and Kate Bland.

Made for BBC Radio 4 by Just Radio and first broadcast in 2007.

Poetry And Planets: Simon Armitage1998091020180819 (BBC7)
20180820 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces a piece by Simon Armitage and an interview from Start the Week.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poetry And The Russian Soul20160828 (BBC7)
20160829 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Poetry and the Russian Soul, presented by Martin Sixsmith.

4 Extra Debut. 'And Poetry Awakes in Me': Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra introduces Poetry and the Russian Soul, presented by Martin Sixsmith. From July 2008.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Poetry and the Russian Soul.

A short but epic adventure through the heart and soul of Russia's poetry. Martin Sixsmith explores the 'strange kind of love' - often fatal - that Russia's poets have had for their homeland. And asks can you understand Russia better through its verse?

"and poetry awakens in me" (Vasili Pushkin- Autumn) Poetry is uniquely linked to Russian identity and nationhood. Effectively a creation of the 18th century, it was vital in creating a natural language and form of expression as modern Russia forged a separate identity from the old world of the Slavonic church.

Pushkin was its first hero and remains the archetype of the brilliant but doomed poet whose quest for the essential truth of his nation and people carries with it fatal consequences. Russia, after all, is one of the few countries where writing poetry can amount to a death sentence.

Producer: Mark Burman

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2008.

Poetry And The Russian Soul 220160904 (BBC7)
20160905 (BBC7)

'Set the hearts of men on fire with your word.' Poetry and the Russian Soul.

'Set the hearts of men on fire with your word.' Poet in Residence Daljit Nagra introduces the final part of Poetry and the Russian Soul, presented by Martin Sixsmith. From 2008.

Poetry Idol20160626 (BBC7)
20160627 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Poetry Idol - a contest to find the best poet in the Middle East.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Poetry Idol'.

Poetry's always had an essential role to play in Arab literature, and the tradition is thriving in unexpected ways. Shahidha Bari travels to Abu Dhabi to join the audience of 'Million's Poet', a massive televised competition to find the best poet across the Middle East.

Every year this huge contest takes place under the spotlight of the cameras in Abu Dhabi. Million's Poet is broadcast live with a huge following, as judges and viewers both have the chance to vote. There's plenty at stake, as the top prize is an eye-watering five million United Arab Emirate dirhams, a figure getting close to one million pounds.

So how did this TV contest begin and why do people tune in to hear poets reading their work? It's not the sort of show that would be likely to take off in the west. Judges, competitors and the audience all offer clues to the secret of the success of Million Poet's.

Producer: Mark Rickards

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2014.

Poetry In Translation2013051620180826 (BBC7)
20180827 (BBC7)

Poet-in-residence Daljit Nagra dives into the archive to look at the global poetry scene.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Poetry in Translation' looking at the global poetry scene.

Just how do you translate a poem? Daljit Nagra himself explores the different approaches that poets take, and there's more to it than just knowing another language.

The Magazine Modern Poetry in Translation was founded by Ted Hughes and Daniel Weissbort in 1965. It's hard to believe that before this, British poetry had no real access to work beyond its borders. We hear from former editor David Constantine and his replacement Sasha Dugdale about the magazine's history and future.

Daljit speaks to poets Jo Shapcott, Pascale Petit, WN Herbert and Yang Lian, who share the pleasures and pitfalls of their methods of translation.

Producer: Jessica Treen

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

Poetry Of David Gascoyne20170212 (BBC7)
20170213 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces A Burning Sound: The Poetry of David Gascoyne.

4 Extra Debut. Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra introduces A Burning Sound: The Poetry of David Gascoyne. From January 1995.

Poetry Of Gold And Angels 1/2 San Francisco2013081820180729 (BBC7)
20180730 (BBC7)

Introduced by poet Daljit Nagra, San Franciscan Kim Shuck presents the poetry of her city.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poetry Of Gold And Angels 2/2 Los Angeles2013082520180805 (BBC7)
20180806 (BBC7)

Introduced by poet Daljit Nagra, Stephen Kalinich takes us on a poetic tour of Los Angeles

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with second part of 'Poetry Of Gold and Angels: Los Angeles.

Los Angeles poet and lyricist Stephen J. Kalinich looks to find the real poetic voice of the city - a voice he believes is to be found in the poetry of the streets.

Stephen worked with the Beach Boys as a lyricist in the '60s and also recorded a poetry album with Brian Wilson, 'A World of Peace Must Come' inspired by Vietnam. Indeed peace has been his major theme as a writer. He recited poetry at a concert of 'Sugarman' Sixto Rodrigez. As well as reciting some of his own work, Stephen is on a quest to discover the true poetry of LA.

On his journey round the city, he encounters poets such as SA Griffin, from the poetry group Carma Bums who talks about his work also to promote peace with his tour of a 'poetry bomb' - a real bomb filled with poems. He also talks about the harshness of living in a town dominated by the movie industry and a desire to be famous from his experience of working as an actor.

And acclaimed song writer PF Sloan talks about his music and difference between writing lyrics and poetry. He also explains how living in LA can sometimes seem like being at a party, being really hungry and the fruit in the fruit bowl is plastic.

And meet Gingee, a poet and DJ from the Filipino community who talks about the issues she has encountered and why she needs to represent her community in her work.

Producer: Laura Parfitt

A White Pebble Media production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2013.

Poetry Of History - Di Great Insohreckshan20151115 (BBC7)
20151116 (BBC7)

Linton Kwesi Johnson's poem explains Brixton's cultural and political upheaval of 1981.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'The Poetry of History' written in the aftermath of great historic events, Jonathan Bate brings us close to our own times and the Brixton riots of 1981. He talks to Linton Kwesi Johnson whose poem Di Great Insohreckshan now stands alongside TV and radio archive as a primary source, helping future generations understand the cultural and political upheaval that spilt onto the streets of south London in April 1981.

Producer: Tom Alban

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2007.

4 Extra Debut. Jonathan Bate talks to Linton Kwesi Johnson, whose poem explains Brixton's cultural and political upheaval of April 1981.

Jonathan Bate talks to Linton Kwesi Johnson, whose poem explains Brixton's cultural and political upheaval of April 1981.

Poetry Of The Forgotten People20171126 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces 'Poetry of the Forgotten People' featuring Oodgeroo Noonuccal.

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Poetry of the Forgotten People' featuring Australian poet Oodgeroo Noonuccal.

Greta Scacchi pays a personal tribute to this extraordinary poet - formerly known as Kath Walker - who, when the aeroplane she was travelling on was taken hostage, used poetry to appeal to the hostage takers.

A pioneer of Aboriginal poetry, she was the first Indigenous Australian woman to have her work published, which was a milestone in Australian history.

She was also a trailblazing Aboriginal Rights campaigner and environmental activist, who paved the way for contemporary Aboriginal artists and political campaigners.

Joining Greta are close friends and family, who share their memories and discuss her impact not only on their lives but on millions of Australians too.

Oodgeroo's poems are read by Aboriginal actress, Roxanne McDonald.

Produced by Charlotte Austin and Diana Bentley
A Whistledown production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2010.

Poetry Please: Altered States20151129 (BBC7)
20151130 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces an edition featuring poetry to take you into altered states.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'Poetry Please', Roger McGough presents poetry to take you into altered states, reveries and waking dreams - including Tennyson's strange and magical Lotus-Eaters and Coleridge's Kubla Khan.

The readers are Tim Pigott-Smith and Indira Varma.

Producer: Beth O'Dea

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2015.

Poetry Please: Goblin Market20151122 (BBC7)
20151123 (BBC7)

An edition featuring works by Christina Rossetti, including Goblin Market.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'Poetry Please' Roger McGough features the poems of Christina Rossetti. Shirley Henderson gives a beguiling rendition of what is arguably Rossetti's most famous poem 'Goblin Market', published in 1862. It's a heady fairy tale about temptation involving two sisters, Laura and Lizzie. The poem has a sexual undertone and a menacing quality that lurks among the persistent pleas of the fruit selling Goblin men to 'come buy, come buy.' Visits to your greengrocer may never be the same again.

There is also a reading of another of Rossetti's much requested and moving poems 'Remember,' as well as a lesser known poem of pilgrimage, 'Up-hill'.

Producer: Sarah Langan

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2014.

Poetry Please: The Ballad Of Reading Gaol20151206 (BBC7)
20151207 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces an edition featuring Oscar Wilde's The Ballad of Reading Gaol.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'Poetry Please', Roger McGough introduces Oscar Wilde's The Ballad of Reading Gaol, read by Alex Jennings.

In May 1897 Oscar Wilde was released from Reading Gaol. That month he began to write The Ballad of Reading Gaol - to express his horror and outrage at what he had witnessed during his years in prison. The poem memorialises a fellow prisoner, who was hanged for murder in 1896.

Wilde wrote it in exile in Dieppe, then Naples. He finished it in October that same year, and it was published the following year, 1898. The author's name was given simply as C. 3. 3., Wilde's number in Reading Gaol, his cell being the third on the third floor of Block C.

Producer Beth O'Dea

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2012.

Poetry Please: The Eve Of St Agnes20151213 (BBC7)
20151214 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Lindsay Duncan reading Keats's erotic and magical poem.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'Poetry Please', Roger McGough introduces Keats's erotic and magical poem The Eve of St Agnes read by actress Lindsay Duncan.

January 20th is the Eve of St Agnes.

Producer Beth O'Dea

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2009.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces Poetry Please in which actress Lindsay Duncan reads Keats's erotic and magical poem The Eve of St Agnes. Presented by Roger McGough.

Poetry Proms: Andrew Motion And Ua Fanthorpe20170507 (BBC7)
20170508 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects Poetry Proms with Andrew Motion and UA Fanthorpe and Last Word.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with two choices: 'Poetry Proms' with Andrew Motion from 2000 and Tribute to UA Fanthorpe on 'Last Word' from 2009.

At a live event Jo Shapcott introduces poets Andrew Motion and UA Fanthorpe who read selections from their work.

In Last Word, Matthew Bannister and Elizabeth Sandy provide a fitting tribute to UA Fanthorpe following her death in 2009.

Producers: Kate Rowland and Neil George.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4.

Postcards From The Village: An East-west Dialogue2015120620180513 (BBC7)
20180514 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra selects Postcards From the Villages: An East-West Dialogue.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Postcards From the Villages: An East-West Dialogue.

An exchange of two villages at the margins of Europe - one in Transylvania, one in Oxfordshire - inspires new poems from Romanian poet Ioana Ieronim and UK poet Fiona Sampson.

Both have written extensively about their own villages - Rasnov and Coleshill - so what happens when they visit each other's 'great good place'? Ioana and Fiona find some curious parallels between two villages that on first encounter seem very different.

Producer: Emma Harding

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2015.

Provincial Pleasures - Norman Nicholson20171022 (BBC7)
20171023 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces the Cumbrian writer Norman Nicholson in Provincial Pleasures.

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Provincial Pleasures' - a profile of Cumbrian poet Norman Nicholson.

Born in January 1914, Norman Nicholson lived all bar two of his 73 years in the same small industrial town - most of them in the same house.

Millom (Cumbrian dialect for "At the mills") is not the Lake District of Hawkshead or Windermere. It's a place where industry failed and unemployment was disproportionately high. Yet it was here, in isolation from the literary world, that Norman Nicholson became a world-class poet. He wrote about quarrying and iron works, slag banks and granite. He was one of the first to argue that industrial heritage should be valued on a par with our cultural heritage.

Championed in his early life by TS Elliot, Ted Hughes and Seamus Heaney, Nicholson chose to focus his energies on a non-literary audience, spending his evenings lecturing at the Workers Educational Association. During the 1970s, his poem Windscale about a nuclear accident became an environmentalist's anthem.

Eric Robson visits Millom, the town Norman Nicholson dedicated his life to. What do the locals think of the poet who did more than anyone else to reflect the soul of this Cumbrian village? When poets are often restless people, what motivated Nicholson to live his entire life in an apparently depressed provincial town?

Contributors include Melvyn Bragg (chairman of the Norman Nicholson Society), poet Paul Kingsnorth, academic David Cooper (Manchester Metropolitan University) and author Kathleen Jones.

Producer: Joby Waldman
A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2014.

Radio Heaney20160410 (BBC7)
20160411 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces the County Derry poet Seamus Heaney and his love for the wireless.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

'Radio Heaney' is a compilation of many of the poet's greatest radio moments.

In his acceptance speech as newly-anointed Nobel Laureate, Seamus Heaney recalled how vital a role the wireless had played in his early life growing up on a farm in Mossbawn Co. Derry. On the radio, he heard dispatches from the front line during the Second World War, was gripped by Dick Barton Special Agent and revelled in the musicality of the Shipping Forecast.

As an up and coming published poet, Heaney wrote and presented many programmes for schools in Northern Ireland, exploring and celebrating fellow writers and the local landscape. He also made for a compelling contributor and interviewee to any discussion on the purpose of poetry and was ultimately crowned with the medium's greatest accolade, an invitation to Radio 4's Desert Island.

Presented by John Toal.

Producer: Owen McFadden

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2014.

Rilke's Sonnets To Orpheus - Dancing The Orange20160424 (BBC7)
20160425 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces the story of a great modern masterpiece.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with Rainer Maria Rilke's Sonnets to Orpheus - Dancing the Orange.

Leading us through the nuances of their meaning, Karen Leeder alerts us to the beauty and power

of one of the great modernist works of literature of 1922.

After a lifetime wandering about Europe Rilke was at last able to settle when his patron, Werner Reinhart, bought the Château de Muzot in the Swiss Valais so that he could live there, and write. His aim was to complete his monumental work, 'The Duino Elegies'. But this plan was interrupted in February when, 'completely unexpected' the 'Sonnets to Orpheus' broke upon him'. Within three weeks he had completed 55 poems, of great variety, but all sonnets.

Rilke didn't like English and never visited Britain. Yet the 'Sonnets to Orpheus' have fascinated English language readers and writers ever since they appeared - with translations every decade.

With writers Martyn Crucefix and Don Paterson, plus German scholar and poet Rüdiger Görner, Karen Leeder teases out the major issues the poems address; death, love and, the creation and role of poetry - for Rilke a song of praise for life, and even death, in a creation without God, through which meaning is accomplished.

Karen visits the Château de Muzot and with Nanni Reinhart, who lives there now, to considers its impact on the composition of the poems.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

Siegfried Sassoon - A Friend20180107 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra selects 'Siegfried Sassoon - A Friend' with Dennis Silk.

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Siegfried Sassoon - A Friend'

Dennis Silk recalls his 13-year friendship with the war poet and shares a precious private recording he made in the 1960s of Siegfried Sassoon reading his own work, including The General, Base Details, Died of Wounds and several other poems.

Producer: Tom Alban

First broadcast on Radio 4 in 2004.

South Of My Days20160918 (BBC7)
20160919 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces South of My Days, featuring Australian poet Judith Wright.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with South of My Days.

Greta Scacchi presents a portrait of the Australian poet Judith Wright, who died in 2000, after breaking new ground in celebrating the arresting beauty of the Australian landscape - and lamenting the troubled relationship between Australia's colonial settlers and its indigenous people.

Wright's daughter, friends and colleagues discuss her life and work. Kerry Fox is the reader.

Producers: Charlotte Austin and Diana Bentley.

A Whistledown Production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2009.

Stonehenge2004082220181021 (BBC7)
20181022 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses 'Rites of Passage' in which Ian McMillan joins Druids at Stonehenge.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Street Reach Girls20170319 (BBC7)
20170320 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses 'Street Reach Girls', presented by Barnsley poet Ian MacMillan.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Street Reach Girls'.

At a drop-in centre in Yorkshire prostitutes get more than just condoms, health advice, showers and tea: they get Barnsley poet Ian McMillan to help them write poems about their life.

A documentary with verse that tells their story, written by Ian and the Street Reach Girls.

Produced in Bristol by Mark Jobst.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1999.

Surtsey And Me20170702 (BBC7)
20170703 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces 'Surtsey and Me', about a new island near Iceland.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'Surtsey and Me' about the emergence of a new island.

Out of the icy seas off the south-west coast of Iceland in November 1963, a massive volcanic eruption gave birth to the island of Surtsey. The same year in West Yorkshire, the poet Simon Armitage was born. They had never met until 2004. More than five decades later, island and poet get together to compare how it's going.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2004.

Tagore At 15020160612 (BBC7)
20160613 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra on an event marking the anniversary of the poet's birth at Dartington Hall.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Tagore at 150'.

Poets, singers and ecological activists share their favourite verse at the Tagore Festival at Dartington Hall in Devon marking the 150th anniversary of the poet's birth in 2011.

Rabindranath Tagore won the Nobel prize for literature in 1913 for his collection Geetanjali ("The Song Offerings"). He wrote more than 1,000 poems and 2000 songs and his work has been translated into all the major languages of the world.

UNESCO declared 2011 as the Year of Tagore with events throughout the world celebrating his life and work.

Devon's Dartington Hall is a centre for poetry, music, arts and crafts that was founded at the suggestion of Tagore himself.

We hear from poets such as William Radice, Ketaki Kushari Dyson and former Poet Laureate Andrew Motion, singers Debashish and Rohini Raychaudhuri, environmentalist Jonathon Porritt and internationalists such as Clare Short and Satish Kumar, Artistic Director of the Festival who is a devotee of Tagore's ecological teachings as well as his poetry.

Producer: Mukti Jain Campion

A Culture Wise production first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2011.

Tales From Ovid - Arethusa; Salamacis And Hermaphroditus; Actaeon;tiresias20160731 (BBC7)
20160801 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces stories including Tiresias retold from Ovid's Metamorphoses.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Tales of Ovid'.

Poet Ted Hughes continues reading from his award-winning reworking of Ovid's Metamorphoses - stories of the teeming underworld and overworld of Romanised Greek myth and legend.

Featuring 'Arethusa','Salamacis and Hermaphroditus', 'Actaeon' and 'Tiresias', this highly praised collection won the 1997 Whitbread prize for poetry and WH Smith Literary Award.

Ted Hughes: born: 1930 and died: 1998.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast in two-parts on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

Tales From Ovid: Arachne; Midas20160710 (BBC7)
20160711 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Arachne and Midas, stories retold from Ovid's Metamorphoses.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Tales of Ovid'.

Poet Ted Hughes continues reading from his award-winning reworking of Ovid's Metamorphoses - stories of the teeming underworld and overworld of Romanised Greek myth and legend.

Featuring 'Arachne' and 'Midas', this highly praised collection won the 1997 Whitbread prize for poetry and WH Smith Literary Award.

Ted Hughes: born: 1930 and died: 1998.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast in two-parts on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

Tales From Ovid: Echo And Narcissus & Callisto And Arcas20160703 (BBC7)
20160704 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces a prize-winning retelling of tales from Ovid's Metamorphoses.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Tales of Ovid'.

Poet Ted Hughes begins reading from his award-winning reworking of Ovid's Metamorphoses - stories of the teeming underworld and overworld of Romanised Greek myth and legend.

Starting with 'Echo and Narcissus' and 'Callisto and Arcas', this highly praised collection won the 1997 Whitbread prize for poetry and WH Smith Literary Award.

Ted Hughes: born: 1930 and died: 1998.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast in two-parts on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

Tales From Ovid: Pyramus And Thisbe; Erysichthon20160724 (BBC7)
20160725 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces tales from Ovid's Metamorphoses, including' Pyramus and Thisbe'.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Tales of Ovid'.

Poet Ted Hughes continues reading from his award-winning reworking of Ovid's Metamorphoses - stories of the teeming underworld and overworld of Romanised Greek myth and legend.

Featuring 'Pyramus' and 'Thisbe; Erysichthon', this highly praised collection won the 1997 Whitbread prize for poetry and WH Smith Literary Award.

Ted Hughes: born: 1930 and died: 1998.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast in two-parts on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces tales from Ovid's Metamorphoses, including' Pyramus and Thisbe' and 'Erysichthon'. Written and read by Ted Hughes. From May 1998.

Tales From Ovid: Semele; Peleus And Thetis; Pygmalion; The Birth Of Hercules20160717 (BBC7)
20160718 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces stories retold from Ovid's Metamorphoses including Pygmalion.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'Tales of Ovid'.

Poet Ted Hughes continues reading from his award-winning reworking of Ovid's Metamorphoses - stories of the teeming underworld and overworld of Romanised Greek myth and legend.

Featuring 'Semele', 'Peleus and Thetis' and 'Pygmalion and the Birth of Hercules', this highly praised collection won the 1997 Whitbread prize for poetry and WH Smith Literary Award.

Ted Hughes: born: 1930 and died: 1998.

Producer: Susan Roberts

First broadcast in two-parts on BBC Radio 4 in 1998.

The Bards Of Somalia2010082220180916 (BBC7)
20180917 (BBC7)
20180923 (BBC7)
20180924 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses the country's news-reporting poets, as presented by Rageh Omar.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'The Bards of Somalia' featuring the country's news-reporting poets.

What could Britain learn from Somalia - a country where poetry is nothing less than the main means of cultural communication?

Portrayed abroad as a land beset by gunmen, pirates and famine, it is also known by those who live there as a Nation of Poets. Somalia had no written language until 1972 and poetry has always been the country's core form of mass communication - whether the spoken word or, more recently, via cassettes and radios.

Verse has, in many areas, taken the place of history books, newspapers and television as the main means of spreading news and comment. Poets who have real skill - the true bards - have the power to shape current events and receive both social and political privileges.

Can we integrate any of these elements into British poetry? Instead of one Laureate, should we have hundreds of bards reflecting the diversity of our nation - people we can turn to for everything from the poetic equivalent of a Times leader to the latest gossip around the parish pump? Can poetry be integrated into our daily lives as successfully as in Somalia?

In discussion with presenter Rageh Omaar, poets from the Somali community in Britain and expert translators wonder if - through the medium of everything from the spoken word to text messaging - Somalia's bards might provide the germ of a new form of information sharing in Britain.

Producer: Neil Cargill

A Pier production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2010.

The Bards Of Whitelocks Bar2013041420180401 (BBC7)
20180402 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces The Bards of Whitelocks Bar, famous for its poetic punters.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

The Dub Poetry Of Linton Kwesi Johnson20161009 (BBC7)
20161010 (BBC7)

Poet in Residence Daljit Nagra introduces Dread, Beat an' Blood.

4 Extra Debut. Poet in Residence Daljit Nagra introduces Dread, Beat an' Blood, presented by Benjamin Zephaniah. From July 2008.

The Echo Chamber - City Streets And Seashores20171119 (BBC7)

Poets Roy Fisher and Michael Longley talk to Paul Farley. Introduced by Daljit Nagra.

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive and chooses 'The Echo Chamber' - poets Roy Fisher and Michael Longley talk to Paul Farley. From 2013.

Paul Farley meets poets Roy Fisher and Michael Longley. City streets and the seashore sing loud in their poems. Roy Fisher's long sequence, City about Birmingham, is the best poetic account of modern urban life. Michael Longley has been writing lyric poems about a short stretch of the coastline of County Mayo for decades.

Producer: Tim Dee.

The Echo Chamber - Clive James20160103 (BBC7)
20160104 (BBC7)

Clive James reads his staring-death-in-the-face poems with Paul Farley.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'The Echo Chamber', Clive James talks to Paul Farley and reads his staring-death-in-the-face poems.

Clive James has been a poet throughout his life as well as a literary critic, memoirist and television pundit. He didn't expect to be alive for this collection, after illness and old age took him in their grip a couple of years ago. But, against the odds, he's still with us. And his recent poems are extraordinarily clear-eyed and fearlessly moving. He manages to be light throughout whilst remaining, as one critic put it, deadly serious.

Producer: Tim Dee.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2015.

The Echo Chamber - Middle Age20151227 (BBC7)
20151228 (BBC7)

Are the middle years tough for poets? With poems from Muldoon and Kathleen Jamie.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'The Echo Chamber', Paul Farley asks whether the middle years are tough for poets. With Paul Muldoon, Kathleen Jamie and Hugo Williams.

Producer: Tim Dee.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

The Echo Chamber - Solsticial20160117 (BBC7)
20160118 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces The Echo Chamber with Alice Oswald's poem 'Tithonus'.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'The Echo Chamber', Paul Farley introduces a poem called Tithonus for the year's midnight from Alice Oswald - a poem which lasts as long as dawn - plus music from nykelharpist Griselda Sanderson.

Producer: Tim Dee.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2014.

The Echo Chamber - The Body20170522 (BBC7)

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra introduces The Echo Chamber - about the shapes of poems.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with an edition of 'The Echo Chamber'.

Paul Farley looks at the body in question - the shapes of poems and the people in them. How does a poet decide on the form of their poem? What do different poetic forms do to the subject of a poem? The programme travels the country and anatomises its poetic body. With found poems and field-notes, a diary of failure and success, the sound of the world being taken down in rhyme, and a look into a hive of dead bees in midwinter.

With poems from Sean Borodale, Don Paterson and Alice Oswald.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

The Echo Chamber - The Knowledge20151220 (BBC7)
20151221 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces The Echo Chamber in which Paul Farley does the Knowledge.

Daljit Nagra introduces The Echo Chamber in which Paul Farley does the Knowledge, collecting taxi poems and sounds from all over London.

The Echo Chamber - The Poet, The Poem, And The Savannah20160110 (BBC7)
20160111 (BBC7)

Glyn Maxwell, poet and author of On Poetry, discusses his work. Presented by Paul Farley.

Daljit Nagra introduces The Echo Chamber, with Glyn Maxwell, poet and author of On Poetry, discussing his work. Presented by Paul Farley.

The Echo Chamber: Liz Berry And Helen Mort20170814 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses The Echo Chamber, with Paul Farley, Liz Berry and Helen Mort.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'The Echo Chamber' with Liz Berry and Helen Mort.

Two of the most striking and original first poetry collections in the last few years have been Division Street by Helen Mort and Black Country by Liz Berry. Both books are steeped in the places they were made in: West Yorkshire and the West Midlands. With Paul Farley, both poets have travelled towards one another and taken some poems back to their source. Helen Mort in the Peaks, on Sheffield streets, and then the memorably twisted spire of the church in Chesterfield. Liz Berry in a Black Country pigeon loft, an echoing canal tunnel and an ancient geological treasure trove. The heart of England is remade in these new poems. The poets end up half way between one anothers' places in a hotel that W H Auden (great poet of the unloved world) said served the best martinis in the land.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2015.

The Echo Chamber: Translations20170827 (BBC7)
20170828 (BBC7)

Can a poem be transplanted from one language to another?

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'The Echo Chamber': Translations
Adventures in strong language from the best of contemporary poetry. Paul Farley with translations of all sorts and hoping to topple the Tower of Babel. Can you transplant a poem from one language to another? Can a man be a woman? A fox a thought?

Featuring poems by Robin Robertson, Leontia Flynn, and Jamie McKendrick and poems journeying into English from Ancient Greece, Rome, Italy, Spanish and German.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with 'The Echo Chamber': Translations.

Adventures in strong language from the best of contemporary poetry. Paul Farley with translations of all sorts and hoping to topple the Tower of Babel. Can you transplant a poem from one language to another? Can a man be a woman? A fox a thought?

Featuring poems by Robin Robertson, Leontia Flynn, and Jamie McKendrick and poems journeying into English from Ancient Greece, Rome, Italy, Spanish and German.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

The House I Grew Up In20170129 (BBC7)
20170130 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces The House I Grew Up in featuring Jackie Kay in Glasgow.

Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra introduces The House I Grew Up in featuring Jackie Kay in Glasgow. From August 2007.

The Lady Of Shalott20171008 (BBC7)
20171009 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces Adventures in Poetry featuring Tennyson's Lady of Shalott.

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive choosing Adventures in Poetry - The Lady of Shalott.

Peggy Reynolds explores the lasting impact of the poem by Lord Alfred Tennyson.

The time and land of Camelot, a cursed lady must weave in a tower, but never look from the window. But when Sir Lancelot passes by, singing "tirra lira" by the river, she can bear it no longer - the Lady of Shalott wants to see.

Why is this much loved, much recited, much sung poem still intriguing people: historians, painters, weavers and American indie pop singers?

Featuring songs by Rufus Wainwright and an archive reading of the poem by Dame Peggy Ashcroft from 1967.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2006.

The Living Poet - Fleur Adcock20170528 (BBC7)
20170529 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses 'The Living Poet', featuring New Zealand poet, Fleur Adcock.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry with archive featuring New Zealand born poet, Fleur Adcock.

"I've written a lot about places - too much, I sometimes think. It seems to have something to do with my wandering childhood". In 'The Living Poet', Fleur Adcock introduces and reads a selection from her work.

Plus, in an interview from BBC Radio 4's Woman's Hour, Fleur talks to Martha Kearney about her personal life.

Producers: Fraser Steel and Olive Clancy.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 1985 and 2008.

The Poet And The Murderer2015042620180415 (BBC7)
20180416 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces 'The Poet and the Murderer'.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

The Poet Of Sparty Lea. In Search Of Barry Macsweeney20170108 (BBC7)
20170109 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra selects The Poet of Sparty Lea spotlighting Northumberland's Barry MacSweeney

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive and spotlights Barry MacSweeney.

Young poet Tom Chivers reclaims the reputation of counter-cultural poet Barry MacSweeney, who wrote his first poem at seven, began a lifelong struggle with solitary hard drinking at 16 and was nominated for the Oxford Poetry Chair at 18.

A protege of Northumbrian poet Basil Bunting, he was a regular at the Morden Tower in Newcastle along with Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney, Allen Ginsberg, and Ed Dorn. MacSweeney was a man of contradictions; a Romantic poet, a political journalist who raged against the world but also a naturalist whose writing was rooted in the Northumbrian landscape. His refusal to engage with the Establishment was incompatible with commercial or mainstream success, and he died an alcoholic's death, on the fringes of the poetry scene.

A 16-year-old Tom Chivers encountered MacSweeney at what would turn out to be his final poetry reading; a week later he was dead. Now Tom goes on a personal journey to explore the life and work of his hero. Travelling to the Northumbrian landscape which anchored MacSweeney's work, Tom investigates why his radical style was never palatable to the mainstream but also why his work still appeals to a new generation of poets today.

Producer: Allegra McIlroy

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2009.

Daljit Nagra selects The Poet of Sparty Lea spotlighting Northumberland's Barry MacSweeney. From September 2009.

The Poetry Of Aran2018031120180312 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra explores why generations of writers have been drawn to Aran.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'The Poetry of Aran'.

For centuries The Aran Islands, three limestone rocks of the west coast of Ireland, have been an inspiration to writers, artists and intellectuals, in search of an authentic Irish experience.

As the future of the Irish language in Ireland is far from secure, Daljit visits the islands where Irish is still the first language, and explores their rich poetic heritage.

He speaks to the poet Seamus Heaney about why he wrote three poems about the Aran Islands in his first collection and Heaney reads some poetry in Irish for the first time around 40 years; Daljit also visits the cottage where Anglo-Irish playwright John Millington Synge wrote his influential journal of island life - a mouthpiece for the Gaelic-seeking spirit of the Irish literary revival.

We also hear from a local poet who continues the tradition of oral poetry on the islands; and explore the life of one of the key modern, Irish language poets, Máirtín Ó Direáin, who took his inspiration from his birthplace on Aran.

Producer: Jo Wheeler

A Just Radio production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in 2011.

The Sonnet And The Sword2013081120180701 (BBC7)
20180702 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces the rivalrous flattering of Elizabeth I through poetry.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'The Sonnet and The Sword'.

Peggy Reynolds explores the world of the Elizabethan Court, through the poetry written by its courtiers - evoking a world where rivalry between them was common, and flattering the Queen often involved much spectacle.

Poetry during the reign of Elizabeth I developed into a national literature, with courtiers as the elite consumers judging literary developments, and often being at the forefront of innovations themselves.

Professor Steven May discusses the merits of this output, which often influenced those outside the court, such as Shakespeare. Dr Susan Doran helps examine the bigger picture, including religious intolerance, the war with Spain, and concern over the royal succession. These national themes are very present in the poetry of the court.

Producer: Luke Whitlock

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

The Whitsun Weddings2013120120180930 (BBC7)
20181001 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra chooses The Whitsun Weddings by Philip Larkin.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

The Whitsun Weddings20180930

Poet Daljit Nagra chooses The Whitsun Weddings by Philip Larkin.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

The Whitsun Weddings20181001
The Women Of Rainer Maria Rilke20170305 (BBC7)
20170306 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces The Women of Rainer Maria Rilke, presented by Hayley Radford.

4 Extra Debut. Poet-in-Residence Daljit Nagra introduces The Women of Rainer Maria Rilke, presented by Hayley Radford. From 2009.

Time For Verse - Episodes 1 And 220170924 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Time for Verse: Liz Lochhead, presented by George MacBeth.

Time For Verse - Gavin Ewart2018042220180423 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces Gavin Ewart in conversation with George MacBeth.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Time For Verse - Liz Lochhead 3 To 4/520171210 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces 'Time for Verse' - George MacBeth talks with Liz Lochhead.

Time For Verse - Liz Lochhead: Episodes 1 And 220170925 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses Time for Verse: Liz Lochhead, presented by George MacBeth.

To My Dear And Loving Husband By Anne Bradstreet2009111520181014 (BBC7)
20181015 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra introduces the story behind the poem To My Dear and Loving Husband.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Tracy K Smith And Patricia Lockwood20180211 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive selecting The Echo Chamber with Tracy K Smith and Patricia Lockwood.

Outside of a few famous names, recent British poetry has made little impact on American life and letters. The same might be said in reverse: though we speak the same language, our poetries are oddly discrete.

Paul Farley hears from two younger female American voices:

Tracy K Smith's book 'Life on Mars' won a Pulitzer Prize for her poems about space and race and David Bowie.

Patricia Lockwood's writing-life on Twitter is watched from around the world and her 'sexts' and her 'Rape Joke' poem brought her a celebrity very rare in poetry.

Both poets read from their groundbreaking books and share some new poems too.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2016.

Paul Farley hears new work from two young American poets.

Ts Eliot's India - Many Gods, Many Voices20171203 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra explores the often overlooked Indian element to TS Eliot's poetry.

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'TS Eliot's India - Many Gods'

Daljit himself explores the often overlooked Indian element to TS Eliot's poetry.

TS Eliot once wrote that the great philosophers of India 'make most of the great European philosophers look like schoolboys'. And although he's more often remembered as an establishment figure, somewhat conservative and deeply Christian, Eliot also wrote about and studied Indian philosophy, language and culture. He incorporated it into his most famous poems, and even considered becoming a Buddhist.

Daljit Nagra grew up in Britain among both Christian and Indian Sikh traditions, became intrigued at school by Eliot's poem The Waste Land, which ends with the Sanskrit mantra 'Shantih, shantih, shantih'. How did these Indian words find their way into what is, on the face of it, a very western poem? And how does this imagery square with the idea of Eliot the bank clerk in a bowler hat, who converted to High Anglicanism?

Daljit discovers a deep, overlooked vein of Indic ideas in Eliot's poetry, right up until his masterpiece Four Quartets, including references to The Bhagavad Gita, The Upanishads, the Yoga Sutras and Buddhism. But was he merely perpetuating a romantic, exotic image of India, or was Eliot a truly global poet, who found a language to transcend the traditional divisions between eastern and western thought?

Featuring interviews with Eliot's nephew, the poets Jeet Thayil and Maitreyabandhu, Daljit uncovers the overlooked Indian imagery in Eliot's work and considers how far, as a poet steeped in Christian and classical traditions, he really understood it.

Producer: Jo Wheeler
A Brook Lapping production for BBC Radio 4.

First broadcast in 2013.

Ursula Vaughan Williams, Poet And Muse20170101 (BBC7)
20170102 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra chooses creative collaborator Ursula Vaughan Williams.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive and selects a love story.

Ursula Vaughan Williams was most famous for being the composer Ralph Vaughan Williams's second wife. However, she was a published poet who contributed poems for her husband to set and collaborated creatively on various occasions with him and other composers.

The writer Irma Kurtz tells her story and looks at her poetry with the help of the Vaughan Williams' friends and colleagues. She discovers a true love story. Ursula met Vaughan Williams when they were both married to other people. He was much older than her. Her husband died during the war and Ralph's wife spent much of her life in a wheel chair. Ursula became the lover and creative collaborator of the composer, even moving into his marital home with the blessing of his first wife. When Adeline Vaughan Williams died, Ralph and Ursula could be married.

Ursula's poetry speaks of love, nature and memory. Her masterpiece, The Dictated Theme was written in the days after Vaughan Williams died and she described the feeling that he was with her, dictating the verse.

Until her own death in 2007, aged 96, Ursula remained a leading figure on the artistic and social scene of London and continued her husband's work supporting English music.

Interviews include Michael Kennedy, biographer of Ralph Vaughan Williams; close friends Joyce Kennedy and Eva Hornstein; Stephen Connock, editor of Ursula Vaughan Williams' collected poems; and Hugh Cobbe, formerly Head of Music Collections for the British Library.

Readings by Isla Blair.

Producer: Laura Parfitt

A White Pebble Media production for BBC Radio 4

First broadcast in 2013.

Walking With Whitman20160327 (BBC7)
20160328 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces the father of American Literature, Walt Whitman.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

'Walking With Whitman' features the father of American Literature who blew away the cobwebs of dusty imitation.

The Lancashire Moors are the unlikely setting for a celebration of the acclaimed poet, Walt Whitman. Every year Whitman's devotees gather for the annual Whitman Walk, to recite his works and share from the loving cup. Stuart Maconie joins this happy band of walkers and Whitmanites to discover why the American, who never visited this northern mill town, is still celebrated around Bolton some 120 years later.

Producer: Russell Crewe

A Made in Manchester production for BBC Radio 4.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in July 2009.

We Real Cool - The Poetry Of Gwendolyn Brooks20160501 (BBC7)
20160502 (BBC7)

The poetry of Gwendolyn Brooks with the voices of her friends and family.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces We Real Cool: The poetry of Gwendolyn Brooks with the voices of her friends and family. From April 2015.

What I Read To The Dead - Wladislaw Szlengel2013042120180624 (BBC7)
20180625 (BBC7)

4 Extra Debut. Poet Daljit Nagra introduces poetry by Wladislaw Szlengel.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'What I Read to the Dead' with poetry by Wladislaw Szlengel.

In the last months and days of the Warsaw Ghetto, Wladislaw Szlenge's poetry was an urgent shout of defiance for himself and for those who recited his words and prepared to die.

Writer Eva Hoffman explores the extraordinary verse and his little known life. Before the war and the Nazi invasion of Poland, he'd written poetry in his native tongue and witty lyrics for popular tunes sung in the nightclubs of Warsaw. But confinement in the Warsaw Ghetto and its increasingly tragic circumstances changed Szlengel's work into urgent bulletins for both fellow Jews, trapped inside the walls of their prison city, and his former Polish neighbours.

Szlengel wrote until his last days which came with the discovery of their hiding place in April 1943.

People read aloud Szlengel's verses in their hiding places. In them they recognized not just their plight but their own humanity as family and friends continued to be deported. His poetry survived in versions committed to memory by a handful of survivors, in a small cache of poems kept safe and buried in a unique, secret archive and, decades later, in the form of a sheaf of pages found hidden inside a table marked for firewood.

"'I am looking through and sorting the poems that were written to those who are no more. Read it. This is our history. This is what I read to the dead."

Reader Elliot Levey

Producer Mark Burman

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.

What The Donkey Saw: Ua Fanthorpe's Christmas Poems2017122420171225 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra selects 'What the Donkey Saw' - UA Fanthorpe's Christmas poems.

Weekly opportunity for listeners to revisit the riches of the BBC radio poetry archive

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits BBC radio's poetry archive with 'What the Donkey Saw' - UA Fanthorpe's Christmas poems.

Starting in 1972, UA Fanthorpe wrote a Christmas poem every year. Sheila Hancock reads a selection, with an introduction by UA's partner, Rosie Bailey, who designed and printed the cards they sent.

Fanthorpe was witty, original, and she reworked the Christmas story from quirky angles. These were so popular with recipients that a collection was published.

Featuring some of those on this very special poetical Christmas card list, including Carol Ann Duffy, Lawrence Sail and Jackie Kay. For them receiving the poem was important - a funny but thoughtful beginning to Christmas.

Producer: Julian May

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2011.

With Great Pleasure - Don Paterson20160124 (BBC7)
20160125 (BBC7)

Daljit Nagra introduces 'With Great Pleasure' from the Summer 2006 Ledbury Poetry Festival

Daljit Nagra introduces 'With Great Pleasure' from the Summer 2006 Ledbury Poetry Festival with poet-in-residence Don Paterson.

With Great Pleasure - Jo Shapcott20160131 (BBC7)
20160201 (BBC7)

Poet Jo Shapcott's favourite literature read by Christian Rodska and Mark Meadows.

BBC Radio 4's Poet in Residence, Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive.

In 'With Great Pleasure' from the 2003 Ledbury Poetry Festival, Jo Shapcott presents some of her literary favourites read for her by Christian Rodska and Mark Meadows.

Her choices range from medieval poem Piers Plowman to war poet Ivor Gurney via Galileo, Emily Dickinson and the ascent of Kilimanjaro.

Producer: Viv Beeby

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2003.

With Great Pleasure - Les Murray20160214 (BBC7)
20160215 (BBC7)

Les Murray's pick of prose and poetry read by Sean Barrett and Sally Cookson.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces 'With Great Pleasure'. Les Murray's pick of prose and poetry read by Sean Barrett and Sally Cookson.

With Great Pleasure - Sean O'brien20160207 (BBC7)
20160208 (BBC7)

Sean O'Brien's pick of prose and poetry read by Julia Watson and Deka Walmsley.

4 Extra Debut. Daljit Nagra introduces 'With Great Pleasure'. Sean O'Brien's pick of prose and poetry read by Julia Watson and Deka Walmsley.

01New Lyrical Ballads20180225 (BBC7)
20180226 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'New Lyrical Ballads' featuring 26 leading poets reading work inspired by the originals.

In the first of two programmes, Britain's current poets read their own work inspired by Wordsworth and Coleridge's original Lyrical Ballads.

That slim volume of poetry, published in Wine Street in Bristol, is renowned for its radical preface and considered to have marked the beginning of the English Romantic movement in literature.

Featuring: Fleur Adcock, Patience Agbabi, John Burnside, Gillian Clarke, Paul Farley, David Harsent, Kathleen Jamie, Liz Lochhead, Ian McMillan, Andrew Motion, Sean O'Brien, Alice Oswald, Ruth Padel, Don Paterson, Jean Sprackland and Michael Symmons Roberts.

Introduced by festival director, Andrew Kelly.

Recorded at the Bristol Festival of Ideas which commissioned the work and gathered all the poets together to read their work to an expectant audience.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2015.

02New Lyrical Ballads20180304 (BBC7)
20180305 (BBC7)

Poet Daljit Nagra revisits the BBC's radio poetry archive with 'New Lyrical Ballads' featuring 26 leading poets reading work inspired by the originals.

Second of two programmes, Britain's current poets read their own work inspired by Wordsworth and Coleridge's original Lyrical Ballads.

That slim volume of poetry, published in Wine Street in Bristol, is renowned for its radical preface and considered to have marked the beginning of the English Romantic movement in literature.

Featuring: Fleur Adcock, Patience Agbabi, John Burnside, Gillian Clarke, Paul Farley, David Harsent, Kathleen Jamie, Liz Lochhead, Ian McMillan, Andrew Motion, Sean O'Brien, Alice Oswald, Ruth Padel, Don Paterson, Jean Sprackland and Michael Symmons Roberts.
Recorded at the Bristol Festival of Ideas which commissioned the work and gathered all the poets together to read their work to an expectant audience.

Introduced by festival director, Andrew Kelly.

Producer: Tim Dee

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2015.