Frank Bidart has read for the O.B. Hardison Poetry Series on numerous occasions: February 10, 1981, December 9, 1993 for the Emily Dickinson Birthday Tribute, October 21, 1997, November 10, 2008 and most recently on April 7, 2014 in participation of The Literary Legacy of Seamus Heaney (2014).
Bidart, a poet of great and unusual brilliance, has described his writing process as “cracking the shell of the world; or finding that the shell is cracking under you.” His intensely thoughtful, courageous, and powerful poems, collected in In the Western Night, disturb and focus the minds of his readers—a quality his work shares with Emily Dickinson’s. His recent collection Desire was a finalist for the National Book Award and the National Book Critic’s Circle Award. One of the most original and compelling poets in America as well as a devoted and brilliant teacher, Bidart was chosen by judges Lucille Clifton, Robert Hass, and Charles Wright as winner of the 1997 Hardison Prize.
Listen to Frank Bidart read his poem “The Yoke” at his O.B. Hardison, Jr. Poetry Prize Reading on October 21, 1997.
Visit his Poetry Foundation page for more information.