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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Events Tue Apr 08 2014

Rahm Emanuel's Favorite Poems

favoritepoemchicago.jpgIf you've ever wondered what Mayor Rahm Emanuel's favorite poems were, this Friday the Favorite Poem Project and Chicago's own Poetry Foundation will lift that veil. His favorites and those of five other Chicagoans will be featured in this national video initiative, begun by Chicago poet and former U.S. poet laureate Robert Pinsky. It celebrates poetry as "a vocal art" and documents the role of poetry in Chicagoans' lives.

"A favorite poem," writes Poetry Foundation president Robert Polito, "can be a talisman or mantra, a clue, landmark or guiding star, and dwells deep down in our psyches. The readings on the videos are investigative, probing, revelatory, and ultimately autobiographical and moving. Chicago possesses a rich poetry tradition, and we invite our fellow citizens to join us in launching this poetry initiative."

During the initiative's first year-long open call for submissions, over 18,000 Americans, ranging from age 5 to 97, from every conceivable vocation and background, volunteered to share their favorite poems. Those initial ranks fostered several anthologies and collections and 50 mini-documentaries, which are available for viewing at

This perfect pairing of city and expression will be held this Friday, April 11 at 7pm at the Poetry Foundation, 61 W. Superior St., Chicago.

RSVP for this event is mandatory due to limited space, so be quick to make the list -- this is surely not an event to miss. Call Ashley Sheehan at (312) 799-8026, or in person at the Poetry Foundation.

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Book Club is the literary section of Gapers Block, covering Chicago's authors, poets and literary events. More...

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