We don’t hear much about poetry and power these days. Here is a 15-minute recording of John F. Kennedy, in the final days of his life, addressing Amherst College and speaking not only of Robert Frost but of the larger issue of politics, power and poetry.
To cite the accompanying blurb:
Audio recording of President John F. Kennedy’s address during a ceremony at Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts. In his speech President Kennedy explains the importance of public service from educated citizens, and describes the role of an artist in society, noting Frost’s contributions to American arts, culture, and ideology. The President discusses the nature of strength and power, famously stating, “When power leads men towards arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the areas of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses.”