April 04, 2024
Actor Gordon Clapp plays Robert Frost in the East Reading Room

photo credit Trustees of Dartmouth | Katie Lenhart

Celebrating a Literary Giant

The day before Robert Frost's 150th birthday, Dartmouth Libraries partnered with Theta Delta Chi Fraternity, Crossroads Academy, and the Dartmouth Department of English & Creative Writing to showcase two events related to the Pulitzer Prize-winning New England poet.

The first event featured Emmy-winning and Tony-nominated actor Gordon Clapp as a humorous and affable Robert Frost. In the East Reading Room at Baker-Berry Library, he delivered a monologue from an abridged performance of A. M. Dolan's one-person play Robert Frost: This Verse Business. Poems read included "Birches," "Two Roads," "Free Verse About Silas," and "Mending Wall." 

Clapp as Frost was brilliant and delivered some zingers throughout.

Is poetry a way of saying one thing, and meaning another? Yeah, kind of!

Afterward, Crossroads Academy students from Steve Glazer's 7th-grade English class recited their favorite Frost poems, encouraging audience participation. 

What makes Frost so legendary? Frost matriculated at Dartmouth in the Class of 1896 but left after less than one term. 

Dartmouth is my chief college - first one I ran away from! - Clapp as Frost

He later taught at Dartmouth as a Ticknor Fellow from 1943 to 1949 and regularly appeared as a speaker in Dartmouth's Great Issues lecture series from 1947 to 1962. 


Thanks to Morgan Swan, Special Collections Librarian for Teaching & Scholarly Engagement at Rauner Special Collections Library, for co-organizing these events. We're also grateful for Theta Delta Chi's generous donation to fund Clapp's performance and reception.

What do we go around poetry for? Not for criticism, not for appreciation...just an awareness of each other is all.

Gordon Clapp as Robert Frost
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