Favorite Poetry and Poetry-Related Books of the Year
December 28, 2022
The following are some of my favorites of the year, with links to their publishers. (Not all were published in 2022.) For additional reading suggestions, do check out another, completely current list, "A Handful of Poetry Books to Savor Now and Later," by Mandana Chaffa, in the Chicago Review of Books.
Also a Poet: Frank O’Hara, My Father, and Me, by Ada Calhoun (Grove Atlantic, 2022)
Avidly Reads Poetry, by Jacquelyn Ardam (NYU Press, 2022)
Broadway for Paul, by Vincent Katz (Knopf, 2020)
Curb, by Divya Victor (Nightboat Books, 2021)
Customs, by Solmaz Sharif (Graywolf, 2022)
The Difference Is Spreading: Fifty Contemporary Poets on Fifty Poems, edited by Al Filreis and Anna Strong Safford (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2022)
Frank: Sonnets, by Diane Seuss (Graywolf, 2021)
Garden Time, by W.S. Merwin (Copper Canyon, 2016)
The Hurting Kind, by Ada Limón (Milkweed Editions, 2022)
Legacy: Women Poets of the Harlem Renaissance, by Nikki Grimes (Bloomsbury Books for Children, 2021)
Lorine Niedecker: A Poet’s Life, by Margot Peters (University of Wisconsin Press, 2011)
On Autumn Lake: The Collected Essays, by Douglas Crase (Nightboat Books, 2022). I'm still reading this one!
Starshine & Clay, by Kamilah Aisha Moon (Four Way Books, 2017)
Stones: Poems, by Kevin Young (Knopf, 2021)
The World Keeps Ending, and the World Goes On, by Franny Choi (Ecco, 2022)
The Poetry Friday roundup for December 30th is at Patricia J. Franz's Reverie.
Photo by ST of street art by Timur (@timuryorkart).
Wow! Thank you, Susan, for this list of poetry books! I've only read a couple of them this year; I hope to get more of them in in 2023. I'm especially interested in frank: sonnets (D. Suess) - having (for some reason unknown to me) decided that I need to study sonnets. Thank you for the resource! Happy New Year!
Posted by: PATRICIA J FRANZ | December 30, 2022 at 01:33 AM
Thanks for this list, Susan. I'm going to need to add some of these to my tbr shelf! Happy New Year!
Posted by: Laura Purdie Salas | December 30, 2022 at 07:38 AM
Happy New Year, Laura and Patricia. Thanks for reading!
Posted by: Susan | December 30, 2022 at 08:27 AM
Susan, thank you for your long list of poetry books. I will share the list you gathered with the teachers I present to in February. Happy New Year!
Posted by: Carol Varsalona | December 30, 2022 at 11:05 AM
Thank you for this list! As a Wisconsinite, I'm especially intrigued by the Lorine Niedecker biography. I will keep an eye out for the others, too. Happy New Year!
Posted by: JoAnn Early Macken | December 30, 2022 at 11:36 AM
Carol, I really enjoyed all these books! Thanks for reading.
JoAnn, the Niedecker bio was fascinating. The poet's relationship with her natural surroundings was really important, and I knew next to nothing about the area where she's from: Blackhawk Island, on the Rock River.
Happy New Year!
Posted by: Susan | December 30, 2022 at 01:01 PM
Ooooooh! Thanks so much for the recs AND links. I’ve got some clicking to get to.
Posted by: Linda M. | December 30, 2022 at 02:28 PM
You're so welcome, Linda. I am a list fan from way back, and it's fun to compile one.
Posted by: Susan | December 30, 2022 at 02:31 PM
Thanks, Susan--I love the way you're keeping your eye on both kids' and adult work, on the scholarship and on the biographies, too! I'll be adding many of these to my list--I'm especially interested in "Fifty Poets on Fifty Poems." Cheers to you, and Happy New Year!
Posted by: Heidi Mordhorst | December 30, 2022 at 05:23 PM
Oh, I do love a list! I've been enjoying reading year end lists of all sorts recently. Several of the books on your list sound intriguing --I'm embarrassed to admit that I've not read one of them. Yikes! Well, I guess I can add remedying that to my own growing list of resolutions :) Thanks for sharing!
Posted by: Molly Hogan | December 30, 2022 at 05:31 PM
Heidi, that's a good one! I think you'll like it. The book comes out of the online course "Modern & Contemporary American Poetry" which Penn & Coursera offer; that course is a big influence on my list!
Molly, one of the great things that came out of Twitter was #TheSealeyChallenge where you read a book of poetry every day in August. That always boosts the number of books I read each year. I wonder what will happen in 2023! Will Twitter even be around?
Posted by: Susan | December 30, 2022 at 05:53 PM
I've been so curious about Also a Poet, Susan. What did you enjoy about it?
Posted by: Laura Shovan | December 30, 2022 at 07:27 PM
Laura, I really love the work of Frank O’Hara, and his life and circle of friends, including Calhoun’s dad, fascinate me. Mostly it's a memoir of growing up (pretty much unsupervised) in NYC and an honest look at a complicated father-daughter relationship.
Posted by: Susan | December 30, 2022 at 07:35 PM
I'm also interested in the Frank O'Hara book as I read about/and got to know him in "Ninth Street Women, Five Painters and the Movement that Changed Modern Art." I really enjoyed Ada Limón' the Hurting Kind. I like W.S. Merwin so will check out his book, and I've jotted down a few more here I want to read. Great List, many thanks and Happy New Year!
Posted by: Michelle Kogan | December 31, 2022 at 01:43 AM
Happy New Year, Michelle! I really want to read Ninth Street Women. Thank you for the reminder. I now keep a list of books I want to read, and I'm adding it now.
Posted by: Susan | December 31, 2022 at 10:21 AM
I'm a sucker for roundup posts. Thanks for sharing this list of books. I'm off to look some of them up.
Posted by: Marcie Flinchum Atkins | December 31, 2022 at 11:54 AM
Susan, Thank you for this list of poetry books. I'll be sure to check some of them out. I"m always on the lookout for new words and inspiration. Happy New Year!
Posted by: Carol Labuzzetta | December 31, 2022 at 01:33 PM
Marcie and Carol, you're welcome! Thank you for stopping by. I had fun writing & culling the list.
Posted by: Susan | December 31, 2022 at 01:53 PM