NEW YORK (AP) – Paul Simon was honored by the Poetry Society of America, and he celebrated by reading a couple of poems and singing a few songs.

During a dinner benefit Tuesday night at the New York Botanical Garden, Simon and poetry editor Alice Quinn were praised for their achievements and love for language. Quinn is the former poetry editor for The New Yorker and a former editor at Alfred A. Knopf who is stepping down from her longtime position as the poetry society’s executive editor.

Simon is widely cited as among the first songwriters to bring a consciously literary sensibility to rock music. He read works by two poets who died this year, W.S. Merwin and Les Murray, before singing such favorites as “The Boxer” and “The Sound of Silence.”

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