Poems about love, death, motherhood, and feminism were some of the poignant selections read aloud at a reading of the new book Poems That Make Grown Women Cry, at England’s National Theatre earlier this month. Actress Vanessa Redgrave joined writers, theater directors, fellows actors, and activists with Amnesty International on stage to read selections from the book, which is a follow up the 2014 “Grown Men” version, produced by Anthony and Ben Holden. The book features 100 women’s choices of poems that have made them cry.
“With regard to crying,” Edna O’Brien, an Irish writer, said at that reading, “there are many ways of crying and many kinds of crying. There is the open crying and the secret crying, there are the tears of the moment and the tears in retrospect.”
O’Brien chose Sylvia Plath’s poem “Edge,” which she described as “a bit austere. You may not cry, but you may cry in time.” Theater director Jude Kelly read a poem about her by her grown daughter, poet Caroline Kelly, while Redgrave read a poem called “Strange Meeting,” by Wilfred Owen that she said she first heard sung by a tenor in the musical piece “War Requiem” by Benjamin Britten.
“Poetry cuts to the quick,” Ben Holden told the audience as he reminded the men gathered that it was, in fact, okay to cry. “The tiniest drop can flood the soul.”
Read more at The Guardian.