How would you like a cool office in Washington D.C. complete with a telephone that never rings? All you have to do is become Poet Laureate of the United States. Of course it helps to have some published poetry. And it helps to have published poetry that makes the everyday exceptional and not just beautiful but heartfelt. And it helps to have beautiful, exceptional, heartfelt poetry that is notable enough to get you a guest spot on The Colbert Report.

Billy Collins who was the Poet Laureate from 2001 to 2003 explains the history, job duties and the above office description in an interview with Stephen Colbert aired last week. At the end of the interview Collins and Colbert read from Collins’ new book, Aimless Lovein this clip from the show:

The Colbert Report
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Aimless Love 256 pages

And Collins’ other works:

Horoscopes for the Dead

The Apple that Astonished Paris


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