Solid Quarter

Visit Trembling Pillow Press for poetry books, broadsides, chapbooks, and Solid Quarter Magazine.

Visit New Orleans Poetry Fest for the annual 4 day poetry festival directed by Bill Lavender and Megan Burns.

Megan Burns' Poeticsofbone&city project on Tumblr

Monday, December 05, 2011

175 Poets for 2011 or Unhand Me, Vendler (part 3: 112-175)

"No century in the evolution of poetry in English ever had 175 poets worth reading, so why are we being asked to sample so many poets of little or no lasting value?" -H. Vendler, reviewing Penguin's Anthology of Twentieth-Century American Poetry, ed. by Rita Dove

I've had to really dig into my piles of books and memory for the latter portion of this list, mostly poets still living and writing today. As before, this list is not ranked. It's a list of poets that I've read or heard this year that strike me as praiseworthy. Who knows what lasting value they will have, and who cares. I enjoy them and maybe you will too, in the here and now. I want to open with two anthologies that I enjoyed this year; two amazing collections filled with poetry, essays and personal testimonies. 

Thanks for playing. Crack a book, hit play, and go listen to some live poetry before 2011 escapes. 

112) Jennifer Bartlett, Sheila Black, and Michael Northen (editors), Beauty is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability
113) Susan Deer Cloud, editor, I was Indian: An Anthology of Indigenous Poetry 
114) Paulette Swatrzfager, Years of Dust
115) Anselm Hollo, everything, (well, you should read everything...anyway)
116) Michael Ford, forthcoming from Ugly Duckling, Where We Expect to See you Soon
117) Dr. Jerry Ward, Jr.,  The Katrina Papers (probably the best book published about the Katrina and New Orleans)
118) Dennis Formento, Looking for an Out Place
119) Jim Gustafson, Virtue and Annihilation
120) Norman Shapiro, trans and ed. Preversities: A Jacques Prevert Sampler
121) Sunnylyn Thibodeaux, Palm to Pine
122) Michael Palmer, Thread
123) Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, Exilee/ Temps Morts: Selected Works
124) Ron Padgett, How Long
125) Ingeborg Bachmann, Darkness Spoke: The Collected Poems (I haven't read all of this, it's about 650 pages)
126) Bill Berkson, Darkness and Light
127) Bone Bouquet, Vol. 2, Issue 2 with contributors: Shira Dentz, Gina Myers, Eileen Myles, Deborah Poe and more, (whole issue, excellent)
128) Jim Brody, Fleeing Madly South (Dave said this is hard to find, read this, so I did. I had to return it immediately to the Brinks' archives or pay a fine)
129) Jeffrey Young, Ed. Birds & Beasts & Sea: Nature Poems from New Directions (Bernadette gifted this to us on our visit; it's pretty sweet. )
130) Al Young, ed. Something about the Blues (another fun anthology)
131) Lisa Pasold, Betting on the Horses
132) ruth weiss, Desert Journal
133) Unica Zurn, Dark Spring (I probably read this every year as I love Zurn)
134) Jackson MacLow, Thing of Beauty (This is a great collection of MacLow's work)
135) Ed Dorn, Gunslinger, (I'm including this as I listened to the recordings this year on Penn Sound:
136) Everette Maddox, I hope it's not over and good-by and Umpteen Ways of Looking of at a  Possum
137) Bob Cass, Special Edition Broadside in Entrepot, issues 3 &  4
138) Bob Kaufman, Ancient Rain
139) Hank Lazer, Days

Poets Heard this year:

140) Nicole Peyrafitte (via the phone speakers in Bernadette Mayer's living room)
141) Jimmy Ross (our indefatigable host at 17 Poets! Literary and Performance Series)
142) Kalamu Ya Salaam
143) Mark Folse
144) Kim Vodicka
145) Geoff Munsterman, editor-in-chief of Entrepot
146) Michael Ruby
147) Phil Johnson
148) Kataalyst Alcindor
149) Lenny Emmanuel
150) Vincent Farnworth
151) Gwendolyn Albert
152) Felice Guimont
153) Herbert Kearney, forthcoming chapbook from Trembling Pillow Press, Water Speak
154) Nanette Morin
155) James Nola, Higher Ground, (not poetry, but he is a poet and this latest novel is another great post-K New Orleans book)
156) Sam Jasper
157) Dario Suchkova
158) Kelly Clayton
159) Ange Mlinko (Penn Sound recordings on Bernadette Mayer:

160) Jean-Mark Sens

161) Kathryn Schaeppi, Video of Dusie reading c/o Deborah Poe:

162) Jonathan Kline

163) Jamba Dunn, American Dust on Ubuweb:

164) Vanessa Place, Statements of Facts, Ubuweb:

165) Vincent Katz, Shopping for Oliver's Chil, Ubuweb:

166) Sunday Shae Parker

167) Patrice Melnick, director of Festival of Words in Grand Coteau, LA
168) Janine Pommy Vega:

video break brought to you by Deborah Poe. Please watch this before we complete our list:

I'm going to end with some books that I want to read and/ or finish reading before the year turns over:

169) Joseph Lease, Testify (reading this right now, and it's wonderful)

170) Carrie Hunter, The Incompossible
171) Kate Schapira, The Bounty, Four Addresses and How We Saved the City
172) Renee Gladman, Event Factory and The Activist
173) Sommer Browning, Either Way I'm Celebrating
174) Joshua Edwards, Campeche
175) Arielle Guy, Three Geographies

And 'tis the season

Video via UBUWEB:
William Burrough's The Junky's Christmas (1993)

Sunday, December 04, 2011

175 Poets for Pleasure or Vendler's Constraint (Part two, 59-111)

"No century in the evolution of poetry in English ever had 175 poets worth reading, so why are we being asked to sample so many poets of little or no lasting value?" -H. Vendler, reviewing Penguin's Anthology of Twentieth-Century American Poetry, ed. by Rita Dove

Continuation of my 175 poets and editors of poetry from books/ chapbooks I've read this year or last. The list is not ranked, it's in the order that I think/ remember what I've read. I've tried to stick to living poets who I've read this year, with only slight fudging when necessary.  I thought listing books was getting too boring, so I've included some variations as well. Thanks for playing.

Hope some people enjoy the list and add some new names and titles to their rotation.

59) Penelope Rosemont, (ed) Surrealist Women: An International Anthology
60) Thaddeus Conti, Listen Loud, Listen Long
62) Chris Pusateri, Molecularity
63) Michelle Naka Pierce, Symptom of Color
64) j/j hastain and Marthe Reed, Lafayette a Lafayette
65) Sara Rosenthal, The Animal
66) John Pluecker, Undone and Routes into Texas
67) Michalle Gould, 100 Untitled Works in Mill Aluminum and 15 Untitled Works in Concrete
68) Sara Mangold, An Antenna Called the Body
69) Dawn Pendergast, Leaves Fall Leaves
70) Johannes Goransson, entrance to a colonial pageant in which we are all beginning to intricate
71) Mary Ann Caws and Nancy Kline, trans  Furor & Mystery and Other Poems by Rene Char
72) Marilyn Kallet, trans. The Big Game by Benjamin Peret
73) Andrei Codrescu, Whatever Gets You Through the Night, (OK, it's not poetry, but he is a poet and this is a kick ass book.)
74) Julie Carr, 100 Notes on Violence
75) Jonathan Cott, Dylan on Dylan (Not poetry, but by a poet about someone often referred to as a poet.)
76) Sandra Simonds, I've Lived in So Many Apartments
77) Jennifer Dick, Tracery
78) Susan Lewis, Some Assembly Required
79) Julia Cohen and Brandon Shimoda, Samaritan
80) Kristen Sanders, Orthorexia
81) Sarah J. Sloat, Excuse Me While I Wring this long swim out of my hair
82) Inger Christenson, It, Alphabet and Light, Grass and Letter in April 
83) Laura Mullen, Dark Archive
84) Robert Duncan, The H.D. Book, (ok, they are both dead, but the book was just published and it's a must read)

This part of the list constitutes books read in 2010 that still stand out to me:
85) Allison Cobb, Green-Wood ( I would really like to see another Cobb book in 2012)
86) David Rowe, Unsolicited Poems
87) Karen Weiser, To Light Out
88) Christine Hume, SHOT
89) Ruxandra Cesereanu, Crusader Woman
90) Brenda Hillman, Practical Water
91) Moose Jackson, Loup Garou
92) Cynthia Hogue, When the Water Came

93) Pierre Joris, Justifying the Margins

Online or Print Journals,
94) Megan Levad, from You are Where you Live (Fence, fall 2011)
95) Tyler Flynn Dorholt, from Nightmare Directed by Ingmar Bergman, (Horseless Review 8)
96) Rachel Marston, The Signal for Instant Action, (Diagram, 11.1)
97) Cara Benson, [The first man...] from Summer Stock, 5

This part of the list is made up of poets that I've heard read this year, and for various reasons have not read a book of theirs this year, but who still deserve mentioning:

98) Brenda Coultas (Brenda, please, you're killing me, I need another Coultas book STAT)
99) Tracey McTague (long overdue for a collection in my opinion)
100) Jen Tynes (reading from an exquisite long poem that will be a book soon, I hope)
101) Gina Ferrara 
102) Mona Lisa Saloy
103) Quess
104) Simon Pettet
105) Bill Zavatsky
106) Lewis Warsh
107) Shafer Hall
108) Kelly Harris
109) Andrea Boll
110) Rodger Kamenetz
111) Brendan Lorber (who probably deserves his own category as I've heard him read poetry both in person this year and on his acculorber reports, which are their own poetry, so he would be under poets I've heard via video stream)

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Poets Worth Reading: 175 in 2011, Part One (1-58)

"No century in the evolution of poetry in English ever had 175 poets worth reading, so why are we being asked to sample so many poets of little or no lasting value?" -H. Vendler, reviewing Penguin's Anthology of Twentieth-Century American Poetry, ed. by Rita Dove

Since I apparently read way too many poets not worth reading according to Vendler, I thought I would further the torment by sharing all the wonderful books and poets that I have read in the last year. It didn't even take me a century to read 175 interesting poets, so you can probably dismiss this list entirely if you agree with the above statement.

I'll start with what I've read most recently and branch out including only living poets writing in this decade, in a further effort to point out the viability and importance of poetry being written NOW. I read a lot of dead poets too, so don't worry Vendler. I even cracked the Cantos again this year. I'm sure reading Mina Loy's short stories and plays makes that last gesture null and void in Vendler's eyes, but what can you do? I also may have published and/ or may be married to poets mentioned, but unless anyone becomes a millionaire or exceedingly famous from this list, who cares?

If you're not on this list, either I didn't read you this year or I've never read you and you can remedy that by sending me a book that I may or may not read next year.

Let's play:

1) Ed Sanders, Fug You
While not a book of poetry, it outlines Sanders' long commitment to poetry and revolution, and since I learned most of what I know about the 60s and all of what I know about investigative poetics from Sanders' verse, he gets top spot.

2) Bernadette Mayer, Ethics of Sleep and Studying Hunger Journals
It's a good year when you get two Mayer's to challenge and thwart your knowledge and understanding of the written word.

3) Alice Notley, Culture of One and Reason and Other Women
Reason is an older book, but I love the complicated narrative and read it often this year.

4) Anne Waldman, Soldatesque/ Soldiering with Dreams of Wartime (with Noah Saterstrom)
Waldman continues to plunge into the depths of political inquiry and social justice accompanied with beautiful half page images scrolling across the top of the book's pages.

5) Jack Collom Second Nature (unpublished) This is an as yet uncollected manuscript of Collom's life long commitment to nature and poetry; invaluable, experimental and, of course, humorous.

6) Bill Lavender Memory Wing
Poetic memoir trumping through life and the afterlife, new from Black Widow Press

7) Philip Good, Untitled Writings from a Member of the Blank Generation
Long awaited first collection from a poet long on the scene of poetry happenings over the last several decades

8) rob mclennan, C
Small chunks of syllabic beauty caught in the sparse form and space of this chapbook.

9) Deborah Poe, Elements
Examining the invisible architecture of the world through the lens of association and inference

10) Claire Hero, Sing, Mongrel
Strange, bestial, and hard to look away from--

I'm going to stop commenting on the books only because I will start repeating myself, if it's on the list, I'm saying it's worth reading:

11) Bei Dao, Endure (trans. by Clayton Eshleman and Lucas Klein)

12) Jennifer Denrow, California

13) Alison Pelegrin, Hurricane Party

14) Jenny Bouly, Not Merely Because of the Unknown Stalking Toward Them 

15) HR Hegnauer, Sir

16) Jen Hofer,  slide rule and one

17) Susana Gardner, Herso, An Heirship in Waves

18) Dara Wier, A Civilian's Journal of the War Years

19) Sergio Medeiros, Vegetal Sex (trans by Raymond Bianchi)

20) Niyi Osundare, City Without People

21) Mairead Byrne, Lucky

22) Jimmy Lo, A Reduction

23) Dave Brinks, (forthcoming) The Secret Brain: Collected Poems

24) John Sinclair Song of Praise Homage to John Coltrane 

25) Lee Meitzen Grue, DOWNTOWN

26) Danielle Pafunda, Iatrogenic, Their Testimonies

27) Laynie Browne, Roseate Points of Light

28) Kate Eichhorn, Fieldnotes, a forensics

29) Richard Froude, Fabric

30) Eileen Myles, Sappho's Boat: Poems and Pencil Poems (OK, Sappho's Boat is an older book (and I also read Inferno: A Poet's Novel), but it's a great book that I reread this year)

31)Annie Finch, Among the Goddesses

32) Elizabeth Willis, Address

33) Jamey Jones, Blue Rain Morning

34) Joel Dailey, Surprised by French Fries

35) Travis Cebula, Jamaica

36) Julie Kane, Jazz Funeral

37) Daniele Vogel, lit

38) Brad Richard, Motion Studies

39) Arielle Greenberg and Rachel Zucker, Home/ Birth

40) Kim Rosenfield, Trama

41) Camille Dungy, ed. Black Nature

42) Anne Tardo, The Dik Dik's Solitude

43) Joan Retallack, Procedural Elegies/ Western Civ Cont'd

44) Dodie Bellamy, The Buddhist

45) Susan Howe, That This

46) Carmen Gimenez Smith, Can We Talk Here

47) Cecilia Vicuna, beforehand

48) Benjamin Morris, Coronary

49) Brett Evans, Pisa Can

50) Brenda Iijima, If Not Metaphoric

51) Peter Gizzi, Threshold Songs

52) Julia Cohen, The History of a Lake Never Drowns

53) Emma Bolden, The Sad Epistles

54) Daniel Kerwick, Attach It To The Earth

55) Kirsten Jorgenson, Deseret

56) Brooklyn Copeland, Laked, Fielded, Blanked

57) Nathan Hauke, SEWN

58) Darrell Bourque, In Ordinary Light