Jordan Davis

Interglacial: New and Selected Poems & Aphorisms

James Richardson

“I think therefore I think again.” (#93, “Vectors 2.0”) LaRochefoucauld, Joubert, Lichtenberg, O.V. Milosz, Nietzsche, and now Richardson: given the ease with which its very grammar persuades the reader that what was never said before has always been true, available, and satisfying, it’s odd how…

Tremble and Shine

Todd Colby

New York in the early 90s was filthy with poetry-loving musicians. Before Jeff Buckley disappeared under the surface, before M. Doughty’s Soul Coughing lost the bad band name contest to Limp Bizkit, before Beck let Satan eat his taco, as John S. Hall was noticing…

Cascade Experiment: Selected Poems

Alice Fulton

In the central essay in her prose collection Feeling as a Foreign Language: The Good Strangeness of Poetry, Alice Fulton argues for the influence of Emily Dickinson, or rather, she protests critics’ failure to see Dickinson as the creator of a literary dynasty. And in…

At Once

Jenny Browne

Direct not contrived, empathetic not sentimental, gasp-inducing not glib, the poems in Jenny Browne’s first perfect-bound collection, At Once, may make you stop to see how, page after page, she can be so winning. At Once alternates between pieces in regular stanzas and those in…

Walking to Martha’s Vineyard

Franz Wright

There aren’t too many writers—never mind poets!—you could see having their books moved back behind the counter with the Kerouacs, Bukowskis, Burroughses, Ballards, and Denis Johnsons, out of the reach of impulse kleptomaniacs. It could happen to Franz Wright. “The only animal that commits suicide/…

Chances Are Few

Lorenzo Thomas

Of all the impossible rules by which poets have lived—no ideas but in things, form is never more than an extension of content, show don’t tell—the sternest has always been the koan: say it without saying it. Lorenzo Thomas has remained associated with two significant…

Apparition Hill

Mary Ruefle

Mary Ruefle’s poetry has always preferred to be read at twilight, when what appears at first to be a tissue of wryly-observed but loosely related details can become in an instant as solid as a gravestone (or as weird as an illness). Generally her poems…

The Masses Are Asses

Pedro Pietri

Little books: at the bookstores they get pride of impulse-purchase place and sit by the cash register, only to get lost in a jacket pocket or stashed in the bathroom. But pick up a Hanuman edition of John Wieners, Willem de Kooning, or Cookie Mueller,…

The Best American Poetry 2003

Guest Editor Yusef Komunyakaa, Series Editor David Lehman

Set aside any reservations about the superlative in the title; the copyright page advises, “This book is a work of fiction.” Resist the urge to skip from the table of contents to the poets you feel safe with; the editors honor only 75 poems, one…


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