one more!

January 21, 2018

We thought it was over, but happened across one more best-of list: “Best” U.S. Poetry Books, 2000 – 2020 (a list in progress) by Bill Mohr.

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best of 2017, round three

January 8, 2018

Here’s one more collection of best-of lists for 2017 poetry books:

Best-of, round two

December 28, 2017

and so it begins…

December 13, 2017

As you may recall from years past, we’re particularly fond of year-end best-of lists. Although it’s not easy to find out how many poetry books are published each year (one source says 10,038 books of poetry or drama were published in the United States in 2012), it’s certainly a lot, and recommendations — from friends, reviewers, instructors, etc. — can help narrow the field a bit. Here’s the first of this year’s best-of poetry:

Colluvium*

November 19, 2017


2017 Walk Award
By Dee Dee Chapman

Don’t call it a landslide.

Call it a cascade, if you must name it.

The fracture won’t stand there forever.
It spins itself smooth of you.

The detritus’ rich nutrients,
despite frost action and soil creep.

How does that charismatic rhizome
find holes to take hold in, mold its roots ’round?

We’re not supposed to be balloons, but colluviums.
Waste, land-filled, wistful for landscapes.

If only we knew how to fall upon the mountain
instead of pretending we’re sure-footed.

I bet it would feel like flying long enough to believe
we’re more than pebbles that leapt.

I bet it would feel intentional
like blood flow after tourniquet’s release.

. . . . .
Dee Dee Chapman received her BA in Creative Writing at Western Washington University in Spring of 2016. She has been published in From Bellingham With Love, The Noisy Water Review and Jeopardy Magazine. In September 2014 she self-published her first chapbook, Colluvium. Bellingham has been her home for eight years, the longest she’s stayed in one place. She is a cinephile and her favorite animal is the prehistoric Megalodon shark.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2017 by Dee Dee Chapman. Broadside illustrated by Megan Carroll.

the envelope, please

November 18, 2017

In case you missed it, the National Book Awards were announced this week and Frank Bidart won the award in poetry for Half-light: Collected Poems 1965–2016 (Farrar, Straus and Giroux). Read and watch at the National Book Awards website.

Since You Ghosted*

November 12, 2017


2017 Merit Award
By Darian Karuza

The sun is a mosquito zapper
sizzling on the veranda,
calving Earth’s shadow
over a lawn of dewy comets.
I am the chrysalis duskywing
ascending latticework to its warmth.

I passed your cross
on the shoulder of the parkway
the other day. It sent crushed ice
sliding down my spine. Who
was Caroline? I can barely remember.

Maybe, what we call a phantom
is just someone’s fiery iron
mass now cast
as a cool brown dwarf,
a shade of human heat,
calfprints in memory
foam,
                    gravity wells
of a supergone black hole,
an unthawable head cold.

. . . . .
*Copyright 2017 by Darian Karuza. Broadside illustrated by Mat Hudson.

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