Monday, May 16, 2016

Poem of the Week 5.16.16

Something Old, Something New

Summer means something different for all of us: for some, it's freedom and relaxation now that school is out, for others it means getting a job or an internship, still others are studying abroad in far away places. Regardless of where we go or what we do in the summer, however, I think all of us can remember at least one strange, dreamlike, perfect summer day. And, like most feelings, there's a Sylvia Plath poem for that:

I really love this poem--I love her diction, the alliteration, the painting and almost fantastic imagery--but most of all, I love the feeling it gives me. It reminds me of the endless quality of a summer day, the way that twilight seems to hang in the air for hours and the slow bleed of day into night into day. Summer always seems to last forever (for better or for worse), suspended in time like a painting, but when it does finally come to close it seems that everything has happened too quickly. 

Poetry that is powerful and evocative like Plath's always reminds me of what poetry can do. Modern publishing is so weary of poetry, and I often hear people saying that 'no one cares about poetry anymore.' I hope that's not true, and I don't think it is. 

To keep everyone reading this summer, I've compiled a list of new and extremely buzzed poetry collections that I think will be perfect for this summer. I think poetry can work for everyone, whether you have time to read a whole book in a day, or just a few minutes for a poem or two between responsibilities. 

Look by Solmaz Sharif (Graywolf Press)
Rapture by Sjohnna McCray (Graywolf Press)
Shallcross by C.D.Wright (Copper Canyon Press)
Collected Poems 1950-2012 by Adrienne Rich (with a forward by Claudia Rankine) (Norton)

Happy Reading,

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