National Poetry Month

There's a Book for That: National Poetry Month!

Now I think poetry will save nothing from oblivion, but I keep writing about the ordinary because for me it’s the home of the extraordinary, the only home.

– Philip Levine

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  April is the coolest month for poetry lovers because poets – those soothsayers of our age –  are recognized for their talent for “putting the best words in the best order.” Whether you believe, as William Carlos Williams wrote, that “men die miserably every day for lack of what is found there,” we know that people turn to poetry at times of heightened emotion – be it joy or sorrow. During National Poetry Month poets will be out and about in bookstores and libraries giving readings and championing their art. National Poetry Month was established in 1996 by the Academy of American Poets. April was chosen by teachers, booksellers, librarians, and poets as a time to embrace and celebrate poetry—and to encourage the reading of poetry throughout the year. It has become one of the highest profile annual literary celebrations in the world! Dip into the pond of these newly published poetry volumes - from masters and mavericks -  and feel the ripple effect of their beauty. You guessed it! Metaphors be with you…   Brown by Kevin YoungBROWN: POEMS by Kevin Young James Brown. John Brown’s raid. Brown v. the Topeka Board of Ed. The prize-winning author of Blue Laws meditates on all things “brown” in this powerful new collection. Divided into “Home Recordings” and “Field Recordings,” Brown speaks to the way personal experience is shaped by culture, while culture is forever affected by the personal, recalling a black Kansas boyhood to comment on our times.   Poems of Rome by POEMS OF ROME edited by Karl Kirchwey (Everyman's Library) A beautiful hardcover Pocket Poets anthology of poems inspired by the art and architecture of the Eternal City. Poems of Rome ranges across the centuries and contains the work of poets from many cultures and times, from ancient Rome to contemporary America. Designed to accompany readers visiting the city—whether in person or in imagination—the book is divided into sections by place. The poets range from Horace and Ovid to Pasolini and Pavese, and from Byron and Keats and Rilke to James Merrill, Adrienne Rich, Derek Walcott, and Jorie Graham.   The Last Shift by Philip LevineTHE LAST SHIFT: POEMS by Philip Levine Now in paperback—the final collection of new poems from one of our finest and most beloved poets. The poems in this wonderful collection touch all of the events and places that meant the most to Philip Levine. There are lyrical poems about his family and childhood, the magic of nighttime and the power of dreaming; tough poems about the heavy shift work at Detroit’s auto plants, the Nazis, and bosses of all kinds; telling poems about his heroes—jazz players, artists, and working people of every description, even children. There is a peace within that comes to full fruition in Levine’s moving goodbye to his home town in the collection’s final poem, “The Last Shift.”   Night School by Carl DennisNIGHT SCHOOL by Carl Dennis (Penguin Poets) A masterful new collection of poetry from the winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the Ruth Lilly Prize The poems in Carl Dennis’s thirteenth collection are informed by an engagement with a world not fully accessible to the light of day, a world that can only be known with help from the imagination, whether we focus on ourselves, on people close at hand, or on the larger society. To read these poems is to find ourselves invited into a dialogue between what is present and what is absent that proves surprising and enlarging.   Orphic Paris by Henri ColeORPHIC PARIS by Henri Cole Henri Cole’s Orphic Paris combines autobiography, diary, essay, and poetry with photographs to create a new form of elegiac memoir. With Paris as a backdrop, Cole, an award-winning American poet, explores with fresh and penetrating insight the nature of friendship and family, poetry and solitude, the self and freedom. Written under the tutelary spirit of Orpheus—mystic, oracular, entrancing—Orphic Paris is an intimate Paris journal and a literary commonplace book that is a touching, original, brilliant account of the city and of the artists, writers, and luminaries, including Cole himself, who have been moved by it to create.   Blue Rose by Carol Muske-DukesBLUE ROSE by Carol Muske-Dukes (Penguin Poets) Carol Muske-Dukes has won acclaim for poetry that marries sophisticated intelligence, emotional resonance, and lyrical intensity. The poems in her new collection, Blue Rose, navigate around the idea of the unattainable - the elusive nature of poetry, of knowledge, of the fact that we know so little of the lives of others, of the world in which we live. Many of the poems draw inspiration from the lives of women who persisted outside of convention, in poetry, art, science: the painter Paula Modersohn-Becker; the pioneering molecular biologist Rosalyn Franklin, best known for her role in the discovery of DNA; and the American poet and writer Ina Coolbrith, California’s first poet laureate.   Dreampad by Jeff LatosikDREAMPAD by Jeff Latosik A hopeful, timely new collection of poems that take up our ever-evolving relationship with technology. Starting from an urge to reconcile the human need for stability with what’s happening in a constantly fluid “now,” Dreampad, Trillium Book Award for Poetry winner poet Jeff Latosik’s startling new collection, ponders whether an ideal for living is viable when we’re not sure we can say yes or no to anything in a world that’s growing increasingly ephemeral and entangled with the virtual.   American Poetry: The Nineteenth Century by AMERICAN POETRY: THE NINETEENTH CENTURY (The Library of America Anthology) edited by John Hollander At last in a deluxe collector’s edition boxed set, the most complete and authoritative anthology of 19th century American poetry ever published. From the lyrics of Walt Whitman and Emily Dickinson to folk ballads and moving spirituals, one of our nation’s greatest cultural legacies is the distinctly American poetry that arose during the nineteenth century. Unprecedented in its comprehensive sweep and textual authority, and now presented for the first time in a deluxe two-volume boxed set, the Library of America’s acclaimed anthology American Poetry: The Nineteenth Century reveals for the first time the full beauty and diversity of that tradition.   Dothead by Amit MajmudarDOTHEAD: POEMS by Amit Majmudar A captivating, no-holds-barred collection of new poems from an acclaimed poet and novelist with a fierce and original voice. Dothead is an exploration of selfhood both intense and exhilarating. Within the first pages, Amit Majmudar asserts the claims of both the self and the other: the title poem shows us the place of an Indian American teenager in the bland surround of a mostly white peer group, partaking of imagery from the poet’s Hindu tradition; the very next poem is a fanciful autobiography, relying for its imagery on the religious tradition of Islam. From poems about the treatment at the airport of people who look like Majmudar (“my dark unshaven brothers / whose names overlap with the crazies and God fiends”) to a long, freewheeling abecedarian poem about Adam and Eve and the discovery of oral sex, Dothead is a profoundly satisfying cultural critique and a thrilling experiment in language. United across a wide range of tones and forms, the poems inhabit and explode multiple perspectives, finding beauty in every one.   For even more on these and other poetry volumes: Poetry 2018
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There’s a Book for That: Poem in Your Pocket Day!

TheresABookForThatlogoTnail (1)April 27th, 2017 is Poem in Your Pocket Day! Initiated in 2002 in partnership with the New York City Departments of Cultural Affairs and Education, Poem in Your Pocket Day has been adopted by all fifty states. In 2016, the League of Canadian Poets extended Poem in Your Pocket Day  to Canada.

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As a grassroots part of National Poetry Month, people celebrate by selecting a poem, carrying it with them, and sharing it with others throughout the day at schools, bookstores, libraries, parks, workplaces, and on Twitter using the hashtag #pocketpoem. Find out more ways to celebrate at Poets.org Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets editions are ideal for filling your head, heart and pocket with poems to savor and share. Here are 10 gorgeous volumes, of the nearly 100 in the series, edited by some of our most distinguished poets. Viva Poetry! FEATURED TITLES 9780375415043_40e10POEMS OF NEW YORK edited by Elizabeth Schmidt All the icons of this greatest of cities swirl and flash through these pages: taxis and subways, bridges and skyscrapers, ghettos and roof gardens and fire escapes, from the South Bronx to Coney Island to Broadway to Central Park, and from Langston Hughes’s Harlem to James Merrill’s Upper East Side. Wallace Stevens, e. e. cummings, W. H. Auden, Dorothy Parker, Elizabeth Bishop, Allen Ginsberg, and Audre Lorde are just a few of the poets gathered here, alongside a host of new young voices.   9780679447269_757bcGARDEN POEMS edited by John Hollander The splendid poems in this collection both represent and glorify the cultivating instinct, and each of them succeeds in “annihilating all that’s made,” as Andrew Marvell puts it in one of the most famous of all English poems, “to a green thought in a green shade.” Contents include poems on Paradises, Gardens of Love, Gardens in the Mind, Gardens and Seasons, Flowers, Gardeners, The Work of the Garden, Gardens of the Wild, City Gardens, Public Gardens, Ruined Gardens, and A Garden of Gardens. Contributors include John Milton, Ovid, E.E. Cummings, Thom Gunn, John Donne, James Merrill, Wallace Stevens, Robert Browning, Shakespeare, and many others.   9780307269744RUSSIAN POETS edited by Peter Washington This volume gathers together some of the best-loved, most powerful and immediate poems from the greatest Russian poets of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Here is the work of Alexander Pushkin, Mikhail Lermontov, Andrei Bely, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Ivan Bunin, Osip Mandelstam, Anna Akhmatova, Marina Tsvetaeva, Boris Pasternak, and Joseph Brodsky, among many others.   9780375712449_e7f4aPOEMS OF THE AMERICAN SOUTH edited by David Biespiel Poems of the American South includes poems both by Southerners and by famous observers of the South who hailed from elsewhere. These range from Walt Whitman, Edgar Allan Poe through Langston Hughes, Wallace Stevens, Elizabeth Bishop, James Dickey and include a host of living poets as well: Wendell Berry, Rita Dove, Sandra Cisneros, Yusef Komunyakaa, Naomi Shihab Nye, C. D. Wright, Natasha Trethewey, and many more.   9780307957863_88d1aVILLANELLES edited by Annie Finch and Marie-Elizabeth MalAnnie Finch, Marie-Elizabeth Mali The first of its kind–a comprehensive collection of the best of the villanelle, a delightful poetic form whose popularity ranks only behind that of the sonnet and the haiku. With its intricate rhyme scheme and dance-like pattern of repeating lines, its marriage of recurrence and surprise, the villanelle is a form that has fascinated poets since its introduction almost two centuries ago and is enjoying a revival with contemporary poets.   9780307592668MILLAY: POEMS by Edna St. Vincent Millay; edited by Diana Secker Tesdell One of America’s most beloved poets, Edna St. Vincent Millay burst onto the literary scene at a very young age and won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry in 1923. Her passionate lyrics and superbly crafted sonnets have thrilled generations of readers long after the notoriously bohemian lifestyle she led in Greenwich Village in the 1920s ceased to shock them. Millay’s refreshing frankness and cynicism and her ardent appetite for life still burn brightly on the page more than half a century after her death.   9781400041282_fea30HAIKU edited by Peter Washington Simple yet capable of great complexity, the haiku is a tightly structured verse form that has a remarkable power to distill the essence of a moment keenly perceived. For centuries confined to a small literary elite in Japan, the writing of haiku is now practiced all over the world by those who are fascinated by its combination of technical challenge, expressive means, and extreme concentration. This anthology brings together hundreds of haiku by the Japanese masters–Basho, Issa, Buson, Shiki–with superb examples from nineteenth- and twentieth-century writers.   9780375414596_49f98POEMS OF THE AMERICAN WEST edited by Robert Mezey Here is the West in all its rich variety–the harsh life of farms and ranches; man’s destructive invasion into forest and desert solitudes; the bars and bistros of San Francisco and Hollywood; Pacific surf and endless highways; the ghost towns, the poverty, and the legendary world of cowpunchers and gunslingers. From Robert Frost’s “Once by the Pacific” to Charles Bukowski’s “Vegas,” from Fred Koller’s “Lone Star State of Mind” to Thom Gunn’s “San Francisco Streets”–the West is evoked in all its incarnations, both actual and mythic.   9780375414190_7a128LULLABIES AND POEMS FOR CHILDREN edited by Diana Secker Larson Diana Secker Larson In this enchanting and comprehensive collection are beautiful lyrics to sing or read to little ones, from Shakespeare’s lullaby for the fairy queen, Titania, to Brahms’s “Lullaby”; and from Gershwin’s “Summertime” to Langston Hughes’s lovely lullaby for a “night black baby.” Here, too, are poems for children that range from tender to nonsensical, from quiet to raucous–from T. S. Eliot to Lewis Carroll and Edward Lear.   9780679436317ANIMAL POEMS edited by John Hollander From East to West, from ancient times to modern, from Mei Yu Ch’en on swarming mosquitoes to William Cullen Bryant’s solitary waterfowl and Rainer Maria Rilke’s enchanted gazelle, from Auden on cats and dogs to E.E. Cummings’s verse in the shape of a grasshopper to James Merrill’s vision of the octopus, here—selected by John Hollander—are 136 poems that provide exhilarating access to literature’s glorious lyric zoo.   For more on these and other titles in Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets Series visit Pocket Poets

Knopf Celebrates National Poetry Month with Poem-A-Day Program

Knopf_Poem-A-Day_Igloo NewsletterIn 1996, the Academy of American Poets set aside April as the official month to focus attention on poetry and its many contributions to our culture. Knopf takes part in the National Poetry Month celebration with our Poem-A-Day program. Each day during the month of April, we send out a free poem by a new or established poet drawn from the extensive list of books published by our group of imprints. 

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Some of the poems are treasures from the rich Knopf backlist, some are recently published works, and some are from collections that are soon to be released. This year, Knopf is announcing a new volume entitled RESISTANCE, REBELLION, LIFE: 50 Poems Now.  Edited and introduced by Knopf poet Amit Majmudar, Poet Laureate of Ohio, the book will include poems written from a myriad of perspectives, and yet represents only a fraction of the robust flowering of political poetry in the United States at the moment. Throughout April, we will feature poems from those who shared their work with us in the spirit of poetic resistance. Knopf_PoemADay_Signup_Borzoi_300x250Some of the poets contributing to this collection include Solmaz Sharif, Eileen Myles, Kevin Young, Juan Felipe Herrera, Ada Limón, Jane Hirshfield, Paul Muldoon, Sharon Olds, Jericho Brown, Maggie Smith, Michael Dickman, and Fady Joudah. The title of the book, Resistance, Rebellion, Life, is a salute to a collection of essays that was written by Albert Camus, “Resistance, Rebellion, and Death.” Clifton Fadiman, the noted editor and critic, once said that “any American publisher who accepts and prints fine verse is making a voluntary contribution to Western culture.” Knopf is honored to continue that tradition, and devoted to helping bring poetry to a wider audience. Join the celebration and sign up to receive your Poem-A-Day during the month of April. Happy Poetry Month from Knopf