Happy World Poetry Day

Happy World Poetry Day! Here are 9 amazing poetry books to add to your poetry collection!


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Ink Earl by Susan Holbrook (Coach House Books)Starting with ad copy that extols the iconic Pink Pearl eraser, Holbrook erases and erases, revealing more and more. Rubbing out different words from this decidedly non-literary, noncanonical source text, she was left with the promise of “100 essays” and set about to find them. Among her discoveries are queer love poems, art projects, political commentary, lunch, songs, and entire extended families.
Rank Songbirds by Leon Rooke (Porcupine’s Quill)Leon Rooke’s Rank Songbirds delves into dramatic and intense relationships, politics and the quirks of society, celebrating humanity’s resilience in spite of-or perhaps because of-its flaws.
Essential Ingredients by Carol Rose GoldenEagle (Inanna Publications)Carol Rose GoldenEagle’s new poetry collection examines hardship and struggle, triumph of spirit and joy, and serves as a reminder to all parents that childhood is fleeting. This beautiful volume is a celebration of parenthood, in the form of love letters to the poet’s children. It is ultimately a tribute to the memories of those many magic moments which define love, purpose, and pride.
The Absence of Zero by R. Kolewe (Book*hug Press)The Absence of Zero is a triumphantly-executed celebration of the the long poem tradition. Consisting of 256 16-line quartets, and 34 free-form interruptions, this slow-moving haunting work is a beautiful example of thinking in language, a meditation that explores time and memory in both content and form. The 20th century is already more than 20 years past: The Absence of Zero is Kolewe’s elegy to that era, and the disparate fragments of its ideas that continue to affect and disrupt our present.
Umbilical Cord by Hasan Namir (Book*hug Press)Hasan Namir shares a joyful collection about parenting, fatherhood and hope. These warm free-verse poems document the journey that he and his husband took to have a child. Between love letters to their young son, Namir shares insight into his love story with his husband, the complexities of the IVF surrogacy process and the first year as a family of three. Umbilical Cord is a heartfelt book for parents or would-be parents, with a universal message of hope.
The Invisible World Is in Decline Book IX by Bruce Whiteman (ECW Press)The Invisible World Is in Decline: Book IX is full of startling poetic music and imagery while addressing concerns to which every reader will respond: the life of the heart as well as life during COVID-19, love as well as death, philosophy as well as emotion. At the heart of this book is what Whiteman calls “the bright articulate world,” something visionary but accessible to every thoughtful reader.
Postscripts from a City Burning by Sam Cheuk (Palimpsest Press)Postscripts from a City Burning reassembles the embers left behind by the 2019 Hong Kong protests (and ultimately failed coup), weaving nostalgia, loss, and possible redemption into a time capsule of diaristic verse, photographs, dramatic monologues, and historical testimony. At once angry, despondent and unflinching, Sam Cheuk’s second full-length collection offers up a microcosmic prelude of a city’s smouldering ruin among many in a world marching to the heartbeat of increasingly authoritarian impulses.
Girl running by Diana Hope Tegenkamp (Thistledown Press)This stellar debut collection by Métis poet Diana Hope Tegenkamp takes us through many worlds and wonders. In Girl running, we find solace and outrage, grief and tenderness, bewilderment and beauty, all “entangled in hope and dreaming”. The poet’s love of the natural world is both earthy and adamantine, and her passion for literature and art is just as rich a source for her questioning eye. In these poems, disappearances, perpetual flights, river walks, shadowy descents and miraculous returns connect daily living and mortality, current social realities and ancient histories, the surface and the subterranean depths of our complicated lives. 
The Good Arabs by Eli Tareq El Bechelany-Lynch (Metonymy Press)The verse and prose poems in The Good Arabs ground the reader in place, language, and the body. This genre-defying collection maps Arab and trans identity through the immensity of experience felt in one body, the sorrow of citizens let down by their countries, and the garbage crisis in Lebanon. Ultimately, it shows how we might love amid dismay, adore the pungent and the ugly, and exist in our multiplicity across spaces.

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