Deepening Life: Poetic Resonance with Jane Hirshfield

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I truly feel that all of our creativity, all of our expression, all of our comprehensions of the world are available to us in this moment. It is not a reaching out into the exotic; it is a reaching in to a way of knowing the world, which is enlarged, augmented, clarifying and open.” With each collection she has written, Jane Hirshfield, widely considered as one of America’s preeminent writers and poets of her generation, has continued to search out new ways to increase poetry’s capacities for understanding. This dialogue is an exploration into the world of poetry, with its depth of thought and richness of observation. An evocative mix of control and wildness shines through each portion of this dialogue. (hosted by Michael Toms)


Jane Hirshfield is a poet, translator, and essayist and is the author of many collections of poetry and other books, including three collections of women poets from the past. Her awards include fellowships from the Guggenheim and Rockefeller foundations, the Academy of American Poets, and the National Endowment for the Arts, three Pushcart Prizes, the California Book Award, The Poetry Center Book Award, and other honors. Her poems appear regularly in magazines such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and Poetry and have been included in six editions of The Best American Poetry.

Her poetry books include:

To learn more about the work of Jane Hirshfield go to

Topics Explored in This Dialogue

  • How you can acknowledge your own inner poet
  • What a Zen practice can mean to your everyday life
  • How the personal is merged with the cultural milieu
  • How certainty that you are certain is the most dangerous thing

Host:  Michael Toms     Interview Date: 9/12/2006       Program Number: 3170