Is that a poem in your pocket?

March 30, 2011 § Leave a comment

April is poetry month! Let the peasants rejoice!

In honour of National Poetry Month I’ve created a poetry display. I’ve pulled several great poetry chapbooks and a couple poet biographies for you to checkout from the display area. Also available are printed out pocket poems from www.poets.org (my favourite poetry site).

So, I want to talk to you about poetry today. I’ve been reading mostly poetry for the past few months and I’ve got a long list of recommendations for you.

A Few Things You Should Know About the Weasel by David Starkey.

How could I not read something with such a catchy title? “Ranging through philosophy and art and history – both global and domestic – these poems skillfully chronicle the darkness that is our current age and condition, and the pinpricks of light that may show us the way out. When a poem called ‘Hitler’s Art’ begins ‘I hate to admit it, but he wasn’t bad’, you know the poet isn’t afraid to look at anything.” Some of these poems had me laughing.

Mortal Geography by Alexandra Teague

Winner of the 2009 Lexi Rudnitsky First Book Prize in Poetry. This collection rated a full 5 stars from me on Goodreads.com … now if only I could remember why… regardless, I clearly loved it!  “Drawing on sources as varied as ESL classroom discussions, a colonial travelogue, and the Dungeons & Dragons Player’s Handbook, Alexandra Teague explores how language alternately empowers and fails us in this smart, searching, and accessible debut.”

The Haiku Anthology edited by Cor Van Den Heuvel

I got into haiku recently when my mother suggested I enter a haiku contest for gift certificates to the online store Vitalchoice.com and what do you know, I won third place with my haiku. You can read it in their newsletter online. In the meantime, haikus are wonderful and interesting slices of life from the mundane to the sublime these haikus are very accessible and intimate.

Modern Poetry of Pakistan edited by Iftikhar Arif &  Waqas Khwaja

This is a great collection of poetry. I love the fact the editors address translation issues in poetry in the beginning. There are a great many love poems and political poems and what’s terrific is that the images are new and there’s no feeling of having read any of this before, of familiarity in the words, though the feelings between humans are shared.  “I am the Torah, I am the Gospel,/I am Gita,/I am Ramayana./Don’t look for me in books./I am the invisible sign between words.” (from “I am without form or shape”)

Finally, Kay Ryan will be in Houston for a reading! In 2008, Ryan was appointed the Library of Congress’s sixteenth Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry. Learn more about the even from inprinthouston.org

(the image is from here)
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