Bob Holman is Founding Director of Bowery Arts+Science; in 2001 he founded the Bowery Poetry Club, where much of the organization's programming occurs. Dubbed "Ringmaster of the Spoken Word" (NY Daily News), "Poetry Czar" (Village Voice), and "Dean of the Scene" (Seventeen Magazine), he studied poetry at Columbia where he now teaches: he finds it fulfilling, becoming the guy he used to laugh at (he also teaches at NYU). He has published sixteen works of poetry, most recently Sing This One Back To Me (Coffee House Press) and A Couple of Ways of Doing Something, a collaboration with Chuck Close. His 3-part TV series exploring endangered languages and cultures in West Africa and Israel, "On the Road with Bob Holman," aired on LinkTV; he created the award-winning PBS, The United States of Poetry. Crossing State Lines; An American Renga—a collaboration of 54 US poets, edited with Carol Muske-Dukes, was published by Farrar Strauss in 2012. He is currently working on two Endangered Language Projects: Khonsay: A Poem of Many Tongues, with each line from a different endangered tongue; and "Language Matters with Bob Holman," a 90-minute special on Endangered Languages for PBS produced by David Grubin with Holman as host.
If you’re sitting down to write a poem, the first thing to do is to forget that you’re sitting down to write a poem. And not to censor yourself in any form when you’re writing. Later on you can censor yourself all you want. It’s called editing, and it’s necessary to take that poem from this originating explosion into the crafted art that’s going to allow it to live alone.