Audio Archives

Slate: Weekly Poem read by the Author

Person Describing Archive

Celyn Harding Jones (2010) ; Chelsea Obodoechina (2020)

Is this primarily a poetry audio site?

Y (Y; whole site has other audio and text archives and listings)

Sponsoring Person or Institution

Washington Post/ Newsweek Interactive.

Site URL

Site Last Updated


Date Visited


General Description of Archive

This is an online archive compiled by Slate online magazine, of poems read by their author, posted (more or less) weekly since 1996. It also contains, when available an audio recording of the poem. Also available on iTunes as a podcast.


UPDATE (Chelsea Obodoechina): Link no longer works. Poems have been relocated to

Description of archive history or URL

Chosen by U.S. Poet Laureate Robert Pinksy, one poem per week is (almost always) read by the author.

Contact information

"Robert Pinsky
Poetry Editor, Slate
Boston University
236 Bay State Road
Boston, MA 02215"

Searchable options

The search bar searches the entire website (news, media, politics, business, etc). This can be helpful because it may relate you to other articles on Slate about the poet, but unfortunately there is no search that is limited to the Poems archive.

Relation from the audio to the text

The poem is shown, however the audio is sometimes on a separate blank page and following along is difficult. Often there is an article about the poem and that is shown also.

Date/Time/Length/Context info about the audio items

Date the recording was Posted is indicated, but not the date recorded. Length and time are indicated on the play bar. No context about the recording are given.

Author bios and context within literary history

Very rarely: if there is an article about the author, sometimes bio is given.

Audio file type: streaming, download, file format, audio file compression quality (WAV, MP3, bitrate)

You can stream, download or subscribe to Slate's Poetry Podcast on iTunes.

Multimedia integration (pictures, video, etc.)

None, unfortunately.

Audio playback setup (opens in Flash player, on new blank screen, etc.)

Most of the newer recordings use a Flashplayer playbar that is on the same page, however older recordings are linked to a new blank page and the playbar shows on the very bottom of the screen where the scroll across bar is usually located. I can't get these older recordings to work.

Mobile access (i.e. accessible on smart phones, tablets, etc.)

Mobile access available, however only for text articles.


UPDATE (Chelsea Obodoechina): Can be accessed through the TuneIn app, available on the Google Play Store and the App Store.


Browsing is limited to scrolling down long lists by year.

Discovery features (pre-made playlists; dynamic lists: lists of recent additions, featured items, related items, etc).
Interactivity and Web 2.0 features

Slate's website is filled with sharing tools like facebook like, connect via Meeboo, Stumble it, tweet, post, Rss, Print, Email, Buzz Up features. None are directly related to the poems.

Other notes