Donald Hall | New Hampshire Public Radio

Donald Hall

The home of former Poet Laureate Donald Hall and a social hall are among the historic places named to this year's "Seven to Save" list from the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance.

The Eagle Pond Farm in Wilmot inspired U.S. Poet Laureate Donald Hall and his wife, poet Jane Kenyon.

The alliance says support for a sustainable business model that inspires future writers is needed after a successful first-step save of the house and many possessions that were at auction.

Britta Greene / New Hampshire Public Radio

The late poet Donald Hall had fans all over the world, but he was perhaps most loved here in New Hampshire. Many of his friends believed, as he did, that his small white farmhouse on Route 4 in Wilmot would stay in his family after he died. So it came as a surprise earlier this spring to hear the house was going on the market.

Poet Donald Hall's Historic Farmhouse to be Preserved

May 14, 2019
Britta Greene / New Hampshire Public Radio

A New Hampshire couple has purchased the former home of renowned poet Donald Hall. Hall died last year, leaving behind a historic farmhouse in the town of Wilmot.

Until this spring, it was unclear what would become of the house and property, which features prominently in Hall's work.

Britta Greene / New Hampshire Public Radio

An estate sale at the home of the late poet Donald Hall this weekend drew hundreds to Wilmot, New Hampshire.

Hall is a former poet laureate of the United States. He's known for his plainspoken work depicting rural life. He died last June.

By 9 a.m. Saturday, when the doors of his historic white farmhouse were set to open, the first person in line had been waiting 15 hours, through the night, to get in.

Michael Brindley / NHPR

When he died last summer at the age of 89, Donald Hall left behind an extensive output of poetry and prose writing.

The one-time poet laureate also left behind a lifetime of possessions, from antiques and rare books, to coins and baseball cards. This week, many of those items will go up for sale to the public.

Mark Bogacz for NHPR

U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith was awarded the Hall-Kenyon Prize in American Poetry at the Currier Museum in Manchester on Wednesday, December 12.

The event featured a reading by Smith from her newest collection of poetry, Wade in the Water, and a conversation with NHPR's Peter Biello about her work and time as Poet Laureate.

Smith also took questions from the audience during the event. 

Here is the full recording of Smith's reading (introduced by Wes McNair, one of the prize's founders)  and her interview with Peter Biello. 

Stephen Blos 1974

Before his death last month, former poet laureate Donald Hall was preparing to publish his final book, a collection of short essays on life as he approached his 90th birthday, a birthday that he knew he would not reach.

The book came out just weeks after his death and features Hall's reflections on the challenges of growing older, his encounters with famous poets, his life with his beloved wife, poet Jane Kenyon, and the way in which he spent much of his career, exploring death.

The poet Donald Hall died this weekend at his home in Wilmot, New Hampshire at the age of 89. He is being remembered as one of the greatest poets in American history.

Host of All Things Considered Peter Biello spoke with Mike Pride, a friend of Hall and Editor Emeritus of the Concord Monitor.

(This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.)

Thank you very much for speaking with me.

Glad to be here.

And so sorry about the circumstances, about the loss of someone that you considered a friend.

Donald Hall died this weekend.  Described as "staggeringly prolific," Hall wrote books of poetry, memoirs, short stories, childrens' books, and essays.  We explore Hall's work, and listen to the poet himself from interviews over the years.

Read NHPR's tribute to Hall, and listen to interviews and events with the poet, here. 

Donald Hall passed away at Eagle Pond Farm in Wilmot this weekend. Though not from the Granite State originally, the one-time U.S. Poet Laureate is widely accepted as a New Hampshire institution. Hall was  prolific in writing both verse and prose, and over the years, NHPR spoke to him about his work again and again.

Here's a selection of our favorite conversations with Hall from the NHPR Archives:

Michael Brindley / NHPR


Donald Hall, a prolific, award-winning poet and man of letters widely admired for his sharp humor and painful candor about nature, mortality, baseball and the distant past, has died at age 89.

Governor Maggie Hassan and the New Hampshire Writers' Project announced the four inaugural inductees to the New Hampshire Literary Hall of Fame Wednesday. The Hall of Fame will be housed as a permanent exhibit and artifact collection at SNHU's Learning Library on the school's Hooksett campus.

Writers' Project Board President Rob Greene and SNHU's Dean of the Shapiro Library, Kathryn Growney, stopped by NHPR's studio to talk about the inductees and the New Hampshire Literary Hall of Fame.

From The Archives: Poets Laureate

Apr 9, 2014

On a September evening 25 years ago a sold out crowd of logophiles gathered at the Seacoast Repertory Theatre in Portsmouth to hear the state's preeminent poets speak in their native tongue. The program for the evening featured just four names, but a weighty four: Donald Hall, Jane Kenyon, Maxine Kumin and Charles Simic.