Gilbert: The Fire Next Time

In January 1963, fifty years ago, the great American writer James Baldwin published a famous book entitled The Fire Next Time. According to Peter Gilbert, it was a profoundly influential statement about race relations in the midst of the Civil Rights movement.

Gilbert: Frost’s Final Days

Robert Frost died fifty years ago tomorrow at the age of eighty-eight. Here’s Peter Gilbert to tell us about the last days of a man that scholars generally now recognize as one of America’s greatest poets. 

Gilbert: Blizzard

With the return of wintry weather, parents once again have to plan ahead for days when their children may be released from school early due to impending weather, out of concern for their safety.  It’s a necessity that’s reminded Peter Gilbert of how a tremendously powerful winter storm once swept across the northern plains – with the most dire of consequences.

Gilbert: Emancipation

Peter Gilbert observes that New Year’s Day one hundred and fifty years ago was unlike any other in American history. With the stroke of a pen, four million humans stopped being under the law pieces of property owned by other people. The slaves in the Confederacy won their freedom.

Gilbert: The Halifax Disaster

This time of year, the sight of truckloads of Christmas trees on the highway headed south, remind Peter Gilbert of the story of Boston’s Christmas tree. It ‘s a powerful story that goes back exactly ninety-five years to Halifax, Nova Scotia and the first World War. 

Gilbert: Whitman’s Election Day

It’s been said that you campaign in poetry and govern in prose. And as the country prepares to vote once again, commentator and Vermont Humanities Council executive director Peter Gilbert tells us about a timely poem written by one of America’s greatest poets.