Poetry Stack

March 7, 2014 § Leave a comment

I’ve recently read a selection of poetry chapbooks. Right now this is the fun reading I can manage to complete cover to cover. I’ve been lucky that cover-to-cover I’ve enjoyed the four chapbooks I checked out from NGL: Thrall, We Come Elemental, Gaits, and Yin.


From Flickr, some rights reserved by adsoy.

Thrall by Natasha Trethewey (our new Poet Laureate) is a beautiful book–and not just for its fantastic cover, either. Honestly, the cover will give you a very good idea about what’s going to happen over the course of Trethewey’s deeply personal poetry in which she explores both her own history and that of America’s interracial roots. Located at PS3570 .R433 T47 2012

We Come Elemental by Tamika Beyer comes with a personal mix of enjoyment and disappointment. Honestly, I enjoyed her concrete poetry, those poems that show me what’s going on and aren’t in the heady space of abstract. Her selections for this book were a mixed bag. I enjoyed the first few poems, which hooked me into reading through some experimental poetry and poems that play with form, until I got to the last third of the book where Beyer came back to more physical poetry that I could see, taste, touch, smell and understand. She is touted as someone who writes “queer poetics.” Located at PS3602 .E936 W4 2013

Gaits by Paulette Dube “describes the relationship between humans and the natural world and the the need for connection to the land” (Goodreads). I can’t say it any better than that. Located at PR9199.3 .D78 G35 2010

Yin by Carolyn Kizer won the 1985 Pulitzer. Though an older book, it isn’t dated. Kizer channels different personalities as she writes these poems about women. Known as a feminist poet, some folks argue her later work is far superior. Ideally all poets grow, never keeping the voice of their youth, really, since ideas and ideals can change, and who a person is changes with new experiences, too. I have not read Kizer’s later work, but I look forward to it if this was her voice in the late 80s, I wonder what it’s like now. Located at PS3521.I9 Y5 1985



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