Posted in Adult, Poetry

A Poetry Sampler

I’ve pulled a few new poetry books from our shelves of new materials. Rather than try to describe the works themselves, I thought I’d give little samples instead; after all, these poets spent a lot of time choosing their words, so why not feature them! And more seriously, no amount of description of poetry will tell you whether you want to read it; only actually seeing the poetry can.

It’s also an opportunity to link to the area in our catalog that lists our new poetry, which you can now see as a list here!

The First Free Women: Poems of the Early Buddhist Nuns by Matty Weingast

I found the voices in this book just incredible. I’m starting the post with this one because it’s my absolute favorite of our new books of poetry. Here is the first half of a poem from the middle of the book:

Addhakasi – The Wealth of Kasi

A night with me
used to cost more
than all the land
in Kasi.

But through all
the pricing and haggling,
I somehow lost interest
in being talked about
like a field of wheat.

Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz

I’ve picked another beginning-of-a-poem from about halfway through this book; this collection is an interesting mix of the personal and the political, often in the same poem:

That Which Cannot Be Stilled

Ash can make you clean,
as alkaline as it is a grief.

My internet research calls it: a disinfectant.
But life is faster research, and unavoidable.

Dirty Indian–a phrase blown like magnetite dust
against the small bones in my ear, many times, and dark.

The Unordering of Days by Jessica Palmer

Even though it’s not really my style, I think I should always include something more experimental/more along the lines of language poetry when I show off our new books. After all, not everyone has to share my taste!

Lunared Anomalies

and we chased larger moons under sky-scrimmed
Appalachia, misplacing cracked understanding
for lingering ranges, their jagged, gentled
angles the backscape for my pause in Clarity. the world
swollen with erosion and summoning, and I followed a narrow
swath of reckoning unto Myself.

The Currents of the World by Quinn Bailey

This poem is near the beginning of the book, and I’ve given the first half of it below. One thing I appreciated about the poems in this book was, in addition to their images and descriptions, the sound of them. Reading them out loud was a pleasure.

This Splendid Shape

And like that it was done.
You stepped out
Of the life you knew
And into the life
You had banished yourself from.

And though it felt like defeat
To say it out loud
And it felt like loneliness to leave,
You did.