Poetry has a reputation for being all-serious all-the-time. But it doesn't have to be that way, says poet Richard Blanco.

Blanco — the nation's fifth presidential inaugural poetand author, most recently, of the collaboration Boundaries — joined Boston Public Radio to share his favorite works with a sense of humor.

"Poetry is by nature sort of centered on this sense of gravitas and what-not," Blanco said.

But humor can be a useful tool for skewering the absurd — or looking at familiar subjects in a new light.

"It's like turning it upside down and looking at the same subject," Blanco said.

Follow along with the poems discussed in this segment, in order: