Reading poetry reveals a great deal about the mind, the values, and the character of an individual. 'Poetry and the American Presidency' presents the first study to focus on the importance of poetry in the lives of 18 American presidents from George Washington to Barack Obama. These presidents read or wrote poetry themselves and on occasion wrote about the nature and importance of poetry for American society. Through the study of the relationship between poetry and the presidents, unique and surprising insights are revealed about the individuals who occupied the Oval Office. Furthermore, this book offers insights into how poetry may factor into leadership and the exercise of power. Scholars in history, literature, and politics will find this book interesting and useful.