“These poets at their best evoke the freshness one hopes for but rarely finds in contemporary poetry.”
The Baltimore Sun
“Obviously, greatness is something conferred posthumously and by posterity, but the poets here exhibit the right aspirations and reflect how American poetry is constantly evolving in craft, range, and versatility.”
Groundbreaking anthologies of this kind come along once in a generation and, in time, define that generation. The Swallow Anthology of New American Poets identifies a group of poets who have recently begun to make an important mark on contemporary poetry, and their accomplishment and influence will only grow with time. The poets gathered here do not constitute a school or movement; rather they are a group of unique artists working at the top of their craft. As editor David Yezzi writes in his introduction, “Here is a group of writers who have, perhaps for the first time since the modernist revolution of the early twentieth century, returned to a happy détente between warring camps. This, I think, is a new—at least in our age—kind of poet, who, dissatisfied with the climate of extremes, has found a balance between innovation and received form, perceiving the terror beneath the classical and the unities girding romanticism. This new unified sensibility is no watered-down admixture, no pragmatic compromise worked out in departments of creative writing, but, rather, the vital spirit behind some of the most accomplished poetry being written by America’s new poets.”
Poets include: Craig Arnold, David Barber, Rick Barot, Priscilla Becker, Geoffrey Brock, Daniel Brown, Peter Campion, Bill Coyle, Morri Creech, Erica Dawson, Ben Downing, Andrew Feld, John Foy, Jason Gray, George Green, Joseph Harrison, Ernest Hilbert, Adam Kirsch, Joanie Mackowski, Eric McHenry, Molly McQuade, Joshua Mehigan, Wilmer Mills, Joe Osterhaus, J. Allyn Rosser, A. E. Stallings, Pimone Triplett, Catherine Tufariello, Deborah Warren, Rachel Wetzsteon, Greg Williamson, Christian Wiman, Mark Wunderlich, David Yezzi, and C. Dale Young.
David Yezzi ’s books of poetry are Azores, Sad Is Eros, and The Hidden Model. His libretto for a chamber opera by David Conte, Firebird Motel, received its world premiere in 2003 and was released on CD by Arsis in 2007. His poems and criticism have appeared in the Atlantic Monthly, New York Times Book Review, Wall Street Journal, New Republic, The Best American Poetry 2006, and elsewhere. He is executive editor of the New Criterion.
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Photographing Eden presents the first full-length collection of poems by a major new talent. The work meditates on several ideas, the crux of which is Eden: spirituality, environmentalism, and the relationships between men and women. Observing, often through the lens of a camera, our state in the world, the poems try to focus sharply on what often seems a blur.
Marked by a rigorously close textual reading, detached from biographical or other extratextual material, New Criticism was the dominant literary theory of the mid-twentieth century. Since that time, schools of literary criticism have arisen in support of or in opposition to the approach advocated by the New Critics. Nonetheless, the theory remains one of the most important sources for groundbreaking criticism and continues to be a controversial approach to reading literature.
In Joshua Mehigan’s award-winning poetry, one encounters a lucid, resolute vision driven by an amazing facility with the metrical line. Most of the poems in The Optimist unapologetically employ traditional poetic technique, and, in each of these, Mehigan stretches the fabric of living language over a framework of regular meter to produce a compelling sonic counterpoint.
This volume presents a broad overview of the work of seven of Africa’s leading poets. Five of them have received international recognition: Niyi Osundare and Chinua Achebe, the Commonwealth Poetry Prize; Osundare and Antonio Jacinto, the Noma Prize; and Jose Craveirinha, the Camoes Prize. The poems concern political, personal, and social themes and are written with aesthetic simplicity and lyricism.