Welcome to Dream Loaf!

Dream Loaf free programming includes a curated selection of lectures and readings pulled from archives along with some live events.  

The June events located near the bottom of this page will live on through the summer and beyond, and the August schedule of dreamy events will begin soon, August 12 to 22.

Registration is not required. Simply click on each program title below on the day of the event. Links to archived videos will become active the morning of the program (audio where noted); links to live events will become available at the time specified for that particular program. Closed captioning is provided for all events.

Thank you to Special Collections of the Davis Library at Middlebury College, with special thanks to Patrick Wallace for digitizing these files.

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Books by all Dream Loaf faculty may be purchased through our locally-owned Vermont Book Shop in Middlebury.

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Every gift, no matter the size, is important. With your help, Bread Loaf Writers’ Conferences will continue to provide instruction for writers at all stages to strengthen their command of literary craft, to examine their assumptions about the art, and to seek advice about works-in-progress.

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August Dream Loaf

Wednesday, August 12

Lecture, 2015

Stacey D’Erasmo, “After the World Ends: The Artist’s Response to Crisis”

The world has ended more than once, in fire and in water and in blood. What happens to the work of individual writers and artists as they are swept up, or away, by history? How can events of almost unimaginable devastation result in radical new pathways for art?

Reading, 1997

Reading by Gloria Naylor

format: audio

Thursday, August 13

Friday, August 14

Saturday, August 15

Sunday, August 16

Lecture, 2018

Monica Youn, “Generative Revision: Beyond the Zero-Sum Game”

Poets tend to treat revision as a process of renunciation—the blue eyes of Alice Methfessel that feature in the original draft of Elizabeth Bishop’s “One Art” are lost forever, sacrificed on the altar of poetic necessity. But is there another, kinder way? This lecture considers another, generative model of revision—one in which the original and revised poem can coexist, can inhabit parallel dimensions. I’ll talk about revision as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division (pushing my mathematical skills to their very limits.) We’ll look at poems by Emily Dickinson, Ross Gay, CD Wright, Anne Carson, Jason Zuzga, Layli Longsoldier, and possibly others.

Monday, August 17

Tuesday, August 18

Wednesday, August 19

Lecture, 2017

Eavan Boland, “From Object to Image” 

Certain categories of writers/poets can seem both relevant and instructive. This lecture aims to consider the category of poets who go from being the objects of a literature to being its authors—often in a relatively short time. Such writers tend to be both disruptive and exemplary and this lecture considers the way they have set out to change the literary conversation.

Reading, 2000

Reading by Louise Glück

format: audio

Thursday, August 20

Friday, August 21

Lecture, 2013

Charles Baxter, “The Request Moment, or: ‘There’s Something I Want You to Do’ ”

It’s common to think of desires and fears as the basic engines of plot, but often those desires and fears come to us second-hand, as requests—what other people want us to do, what they ask us for. Shakespeare’s plays often begin with such moments, as do many stories and novels and poems. Sometimes we lose ownership over our desires altogether, and that, too, sets stories into motion.

Saturday, August 22

Reading, 1976

Reading by Toni Morrison 

format: audio

Reading, 1973

Reading by Anne Sexton 

format: audio

Yusef Komunyakaa receives a standing ovation in the Little Theater.
Yusef Komunyakaa receives a standing ovation during the 2019 Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference.

June Dream Loaf

Welcome by Jennifer Grotz
Tuesday, June 9
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
June 2020 Lecture by Bill McKibben, “A Crisis Inside a Crisis: What COVID-19 Might Teach Us About Dealing with Climate“ 
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
A Manifesto For Our Time,” with panelists Matthew Harrington, Larissa Kyzer, and Elizabeth Lowe, and an introduction by Jennifer Grotz, recorded live.
Wednesday, June 10
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
2017 Lecture by Robin Wall Kimmerer, “What Does the Earth Ask of Us?”
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
2017 Lecture by Christopher Merrill, “Corrective Readings: Translation in the Age of Trump” (Adult Language)
Thursday, June 11
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
2019 Lecture by J. Drew Lanham, “Curating Culture Into Stories of the Wild: When Extinction and Ethnicity Converge
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
2019 Lecture by Emily Wilson, “On Translating the Classics“ 
Bread Loaf Environmental and Bread Loaf Translators’ Conferences
2018 Readings by Susan Bernofsky, Ginger Strand, and Mónica de la Torre
Friday, June 12
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
2019 Lecture by Jennifer Chang, “Other Pastorals: Writing Race and Place” (Adult Language)
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
2017 Lecture by Idra Novey, “Writing While Translating
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
Us&Them + Bread Loaf Five Year Reunion” Reading with Eloisa Amezcua, Christian Gullette, Allison Grimaldi Donahue, and Laura Marris
Saturday, June 13
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
2017 Lecture by Camille Dungy, “What If We Got It All Wrong: Writing Into the Liberation of Uncertainty
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
2018 Lecture by Bill Johnston, “Epic Foolishness: Translating Epic Narrative for the 21st. Century
Bread Loaf Environmental and Bread Loaf Translators’ Conferences
2018 Readings by Megan Mayhew Bergman, Jennifer Grotz, and Luis Alberto Urrea
Sunday, June 14                
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
Helen Macdonald’s 2019 lecture “Bugs and Birds and Bewilderment: How I Learned to Write About Nature” is no longer available.
Bread Loaf Translators’ Conference
2019 Lecture by Edward Gauvin, “Translation as Design
Bread Loaf Environmental Writers’ Conference
Placing the Environmental Perspective in the Current Moment” Reading, discussion, and Q&A with Emily Raboteau, hosted by Megan Mayhew Bergman