February 22, 2020 at the WRITER'S CENTER in Bethesda, MD.
Reading by Lee Woodman.
Lee is the 2020 William Meredith Awardee in poetry for MINDSCAPES.
(Photo credit: DC photographer Sonya Melescu)
Foundation Director Richard Harteis, reading from his new collection, MYSTICAL REHAB
(Photo credit: DC photographer Sonya Melescu)
Left to right: Barbara Goldberg (the 2019 Valentin Krustev awardee for translation), Lee Woodman,
Richard Harteis, and Tom Kirlin (The 2019 William Meredith awardee in Poetry)
introduced the speakers and read from their own works.
(Photo credit: DC photographer Sonya Melescu)
  Letter from the President

Holiday greetings to everyone. It is bound to be a dramatic New Year. We send you every good wish.

2019 sees the end of the “Year of William Meredith,” though with luck, his memory and impact on our culture will never fade. Highlights of our activities in 2019 include:

A memorial calendar, a catalog for the exhibition we arranged at the American University Art Museum for Nancy Frankel (NANCY @ NINETY,) production of the 2019 William Meredith Award for Poetry (ENABLING LOVE, by Tom Kirlin) the 2019 Valentin Krustev Award for Translation (TRANSFORMATION, by Barbara Goldberg,) a collection of essays and photos prepared for the Connecticut College Symposium on the life and work of William Meredith (FESTSCHRIFT FOR WILLIAM) publication of a new book of stories by Lisa Ritchie, THE SCOTCH RUNNER, and a new collection of poems by Andrew Oerke, BAYFIELD BOYHOOD. Readings and celebrations took place at the Bulgarian Embassy and other venues in the DC area. And I was able to wave the flag for poetry and William at the Poetry Festival in Povdiv, Bulgaria along with Barbara Goldberg. All of the books mentioned above are available on Poets-Choice.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, etc. YouTube clips and photos on all these activities can be found in the RECENT AND PAST EVENTS section of this website.

And Poets Choice has just published a new book too! I spent a month in rehab after a big surgery in August wherein the title, MYSTICAL REHAB, New and Other Occasions. It includes 20 years of poems never before brought to bed in a formal way, and I am very glad to announce its arrival. The directors of the festival in Las Vegas where my screen play won have said the film will be produced, so with luck, 2020 will feature COMES LOVE on the silver screen.

I continue to thank God and all of William’s friends that I have been able to carry on his legacy and produce new work. The 2020 William Meredith Award for Poetry is in the wings and will be announced on his birthday, January 9th. Till then, this missive comes with love and gratitude. Richard

Please Click on the following link to bring you to the full Press Release for MINDSCAPES.
Please Click on the following link to bring you to the full Press Release for MYSTICAL REHAB.
From 1964 to 1987 William Morris Meredith served as Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets.
He served as a fighter pilot in both the Pacific campaign in World War II and in Korea. From, 1946 to 1950, he was
Instructor in English at Princeton University, as the Woodrow Wilson Fellow in Writing, and Resident Fellow in
Creative Writing, then associate professor at the University of Hawaii (1950–51). After the Korean War he was
associate then Full Professor of English at Connecticut College, where he taught until 1983.

From 1978 to 1980, he was Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress of the United States,
the position which in 1985 became the Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress.
Click on the image below to view the 2007 CT Governor's Lifetime Achievement Award for William Meredith.
Click on the image below for a video tour of the William Meredith Foundation.
The William Meredith Foundation and Center for the Arts


Foundation Director:
Richard Harteis
Tel. (860) 961-5138
www.WilliamMeredithFoundation.org and www.Poets-Choice.com

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A visit to the Two Trees Garden where William's ashes lie.

The William Meredith Foundation is proud to announce the establishment of the William Meredith Center for the Arts to remember and honor a great American spirit. Friends who have come together as a foundation wish never to forget this extraordinary human being and the impact he has had on so many lives. Poet, pilot, arborist, beloved teacher and friend, his legacy is a treasure we wish to pass on to future generations. The Meredith Center will keep the flame of generosity and artistic camaraderie burning at Riverrun, William's home on the Thames River in Connecticut where he lived and worked for 60 years and which has recently been added to the State Registry of Historic Landmarks.

The center sponsors educational programs during the year to provide cultural enrichment through a diverse selection of artistic programming. It fosters an appreciation for the work of local and regional artists and develops artist exchange programs internationally as well, particularly with the Republic of Bulgaria where Mr. Meredith was made a citizen by presidential decree for his work in the culture. Artists invited for residencies at the Meredith Center share their talents through art exhibitions, readings, publications and academic seminars. The center serves as a retreat where artists can create new works in the same spirit of peace, equality, and serious endeavor that characterized William's life and work at Riverrun.

First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton wrote a letter joining Connecticut College in a celebration of William's 80th birthday in which she says, "The arts have always been a unifying force in our world, bringing people together across vast cultural, social, economic and geographical divisions. Through his work, William Meredith both enhances and strengthens the American spirit. As you honor Mr. Meredith, you celebrate the timeless power of poetry and poets as our American memory, our purveyors of insight and culture, our eyes and ears who silence the white noise around us, and express the very heart of what connects us, plagues us, and makes us fully human."

The William Meredith Center for the Arts offers another window on the world through which we can enhance our spirit, a window through which artists may search their private worlds and speak for us as we make our slow progress as members of the human tribe. A short signature poem by William Meredith inspires us in our efforts to honor his memory as a model of courage, good will, civility and achievement:

A Major Work

Poems are hard to read
Pictures are hard to see
Music is hard to hear
And people are hard to love

But whether from brute need
Or divine energy
At last mind eye and ear
And the great sloth heart will move.

Printable brochure for the William Meredith Foundation (pdf)