There’s something about hearing a poem. The brain engages differently than when you read it off the page. And today there are great on-line libraries full of writing recorded in the author’s voice. Like PennSound.
PennSound has recordings of hundreds of poets. Dead and alive. Famous and not so famous. Ashberry, Berrigan, Crane, H.D., Jorie Graham, Ezra Pound, W.C. Williams, Charles “The Hammer” Simic, James Tates, etc etc….And these files are all downloadable. So, you can listen to them on your Ipod while going for a walk. Or on the subway. Etc. Etc.
Sometimes when I can’t sleep (usually about 4 or 5 a.m.) I’ll listen to Berrigan’s Sonnets. They make all sorts of tired sense to me when I’m in bed listening to them. But when I try to read them on the page they’re virtually meaningless.