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Leaf of Voices Poetry Series

Linda Aldrich. Photo courtesy of Portland Press Herald, 2018.

Linda Aldrich, Portland’s Poet Laureate, hosts a series of poetry readings that feature a range of local voices through varying themes and collaborations of poets. Inspired by Walt Whitman’s poem Voices, this series is intended to highlight Greater Portland’s active community of poetic voices and provoke thoughtful conversation around the art of poetry.

The Leaf of Voices Poetry Series is a project of the Portland Poet Laureate Program, in collaboration with Portland Public Library and the Portland Poet Laureate Committee.

Discover more about Linda Aldrich and the Portland Poet Laureate Program here.


VOICES

NOW I make a leaf of Voices–for I have found nothing mightier than they are,
And I have found that no word spoken, but is beautiful, in its place.

O what is it in me that makes me tremble so at voices?
Surely, whoever speaks to me in the right voice, him or her I shall follow,
As the water follows the moon, silently, with fluid steps, anywhere around the globe.

All waits for the right voices;
Where is the practis’d and perfect organ? Where is the develop’d Soul?
For I see every word utter’d thence, has deeper, sweeter, new sounds, impossible on less terms.

I see brains and lips closed–tympans and temples unstruck,
Until that comes which has the quality to strike and to unclose,
Until that comes which has the quality to bring forth what lies slumbering, forever ready, in all words.

Walt Whitman


From our Archives:

Read What Lies Slumbering, an original poem created by Marcia Brown & Anna Turner for Leaf of Voices Part I: New & Known, January 19, 2019

Leaf of Voices Part I: New & Known
Leaf of Voices Part II: Honoring the Teaching Poet
Leaf of Voices Part III: Celebrating Indigenous Poets

Leaf of Voices Part IV: Bringing it Forward
Leaf of Voices Part V: Honoring Youth Poets