Poets Laureate Collection
The poet laureate designation has a long-standing heritage and history that continues to this day around the world.
The honorary title of Poet Laureate is given to writers generally considered to be pre-eminent in their time. Poets Laureate sometimes write to capture national moods and key events using the power of poetry in a way which pure historical fact cannot. They act as ambassadors for poetry, often leaving a rich legacy dedicated to the appreciation and awareness of poetry.
Over the years, the Poetry Archive has had the pleasure of acquiring recordings of poems by many Laureates in the English-speaking world.
Our Laureate Collection preserves their work for your enjoyment and insight. The collection will continue to evolve and grow, bringing together a wealth of exclusive archive content and contextual material from publicly available websites.
UK Poets Laureate
“Poetry provides an important alternative voice to journalists or pundits or academics as a way of dealing with things that matter to us all.”
- Carol Ann Duffy
Classic UK Laureate Poems
While summer suns o’er the gay prospect play’d
An Autumn Homily
A Song For St Cecilia’s Day
Song To Celia
The Solitary Reaper
Contemporary UK Laureate Poems
The English Astronaut
The Discoveries of Geography
Scotland, Ireland and Wales Poets Laureate
Laureateships are usually national appointments, but some regions and local areas also appoint Poet Laureates. The duties, renumeration and the length of the appointment will vary by country. Not all countries use the term ‘Poet Laureate’, for example in Scotland, they are known as 'The Makar' and in Wales as the 'National Poet of Wales'.
Welsh was the Mother Tongue
In My Country
U.S.A Poets Laureate
In the United States, the official title of the poet laureate is "Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry." This title was established by an act of Congress on December 20, 1985 (Public Law 99-194). From 1937 to December 20, 1985, the position was titled "Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress."