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Bookend: Poet Anne Harding Woodworth

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Anne Harding Woodworth sitting at her desk at her home in Woodley Park.
Jonathan Wilson
Anne Harding Woodworth sitting at her desk at her home in Woodley Park.

Anne Harding Woodworth isn't a Washington, D.C. native, but she's been in the area for 20 years. You'd be hard pressed to find someone more enthusiastic about what the city has to offer — especially to poets. Metro Connection's Jonathan Wilson joins Woodworth at her home in the District's Woodley Park neighborhood. Following are highlights of their interview.

On how her career began:

"It wasn't a poetry culture in my family. They read, but poetry wasn't a big thing in my childhood. I started seriously when I was in my 30s. We were living in Greece. I was an expat in Athens, married to a Greek. I missed the United States at times... I'd get to the United States and miss Greece. So the first book [of mine] that came out was called 'Guide to Greece and Back.' It sort of investigated that whole feeling of not belonging any place and wanting to be in the other place."

On how her second husband helped her return to poetry after a 15-year hiatus from writing:

"My husband is one of these people who grew up with poetry around him all the time. His mother read to him constantl, and he memorized poem after poem. He's a walking poem. That was very helpful to me. We moved to D.C. and I had left Chrysler by then. I just went back to writing poetry full-time, and I had the support of a man who loves poetry."

On her love for D.C.:

"There is so much poetry going on here that I can't imagine being in a better place. There are just people all over who are lovers of poetry, or who write poetry all over this city. And I think it's a wonderful contrast to what's going on in people's lives here. The constant news that we get, and our interest in the government, we need some relief from that, and poetry gives that to us."

[Music: "Frostbit" by Oddissee from Odd Seasons / "Electric Avenue-2" by Musical Creations Studio Musicians (Karaoke) on Professional Karaoke Music for Singers and Performers]

Audio of Anne Harding Woodworth reading her poem “Wireless in Italy.”


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