The panel reads extended selections from each canto of Sir Walter Scott’s narrative poem, “The Lady of the Lake”, highlighting Scott’s interest in reviving the medieval, the importance of history to his work, and his use of varying poetic forms.
The panel reads a selection of poems by Ted Hughes compassing the scope of his poetic oeuvre, from the early and animalistic imagery of “The Jaguar” to the modernist scenes of “Here Is the Cathedral”, before concluding with the confessional “Last Letter”.
The panel reads four poems by Richard Wilbur, “Love Calls Us to the Things of This World”, “A Baroque Wall-Fountain in the Villa Sciarra”, “Mind”, and “Year’s End”, particularly examining the intricacy of their details and their formal attributes.
The panel traces themes of wanderlust, resignation, wistfulness, lonliness, and fatalism in six poems excerpted from Stevenson’s Songs of Travel, including “The Vagabond”, “Bright Is the Ring of Words,” “Whither Must I Wander”, and “The Woodman”.
The panel reads four poems by the Tudor poet and courtier Thomas Wyatt, whose misfortunes in the Henrician court (not least of all two imprisonments) are traced in sonnets and other verse including “Whoso List to Hunt” and “Innocentia Veritas Viat Fides”.
The panel reads three poems by Sylvia Plath, “Tulips”, “Lady Lazarus”, and “Daddy”, tracing in them themes of self-annihilation, and analysing references to her depression and to the conflicted relationships she had with her father and husband.
The panel reads a selection of sonnets by William Shakespeare, and considers their Symposium-like comparisons and contrasts of the different kinds and representations of love, in terms ranging from eloquent to earthy, and from concrete to abstract.
The panel reads Christopher Marlowe’s most famous poem, Hero and Leander, discussing its rich and provocative imagery, classical allusions, and levels of metaphor, and addressing the scholarly opinion of the apparently unfinished state of the work.
The panel reads a single, long poem–“The Defence of Guenevere”–by the Victorian artisan, translator, novelist, and poet William Morris, giving special attention how Guenevere uses and mis-uses evidence and emotion in order to support her case.
The panel reads four poems by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, including three sonnets, and discusses the excellence of her formal expertise and poetic style, particularly in contrast to less favourable mid-20th century critical responses to her body of work.
The panel reads three poems of the greatly esteemed Victorian poet, Robert Browning, including “The Bishop Orders His Tomb at St. Praxed’s”, “Andrea del Sarto”, and “Love among the Ruins”, giving especial attention to the dramatic features of his works.
The panel reads three poems by mid-twentieth century American poet, Frank O’Hara, and examines his connexions to other forms of artistic modernism and post-modernism, including not only prose poetry, but abstract expressionism, cubism, and Dadaism.