In poet Sommer Browning’s second collection Backup Singers, her flawless lyrics that are interwoven with terrible jokes will both amuse and entertain you. Backup Singers is composed of four different sections and each can be read individually or as a whole narrative. In the first two sections, Browning includes untitled prose lyrics that respond to one another, giving Backup Singers an interesting narrative.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Tuesday, July 8th, 2014||No Comments »|
Raymond Antrobus, spoken word poet extraordinaire and author of Shapes and Disfigurements, has been very busy. Not only is he the Poet In Residence at Cardinal Pole Secondary School in Hackney, England, but he’s also the founder of both Keat House Poets and Chill Pill as well.
In a video uploaded by Chill Pill Shorts, Antrobus performs a poem that is dedicated to one of his students who has a heart murmur. The piece gives a sense of how angry the girl is that “she’s not normal” and can’t always do the usual teen activities. In reply, Antrobus urges the little girl to express her feelings via poetry and then muses why “being normal” equals “perfection” in the mind of society. The poem ends with the girl expressing herself via poetry and Antrobus explaining “all the best poets know what it feels like to have a heart that’s different.”
Not only is this a touching ode to a student who has clearly inspired Antrobus, but it’s also a beautiful piece of poetry that gives a glimpse into the heartache of having an invisible disability.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Thursday, April 24th, 2014||No Comments »|
Fire On Her Tongue: An Anthology Of Contemporary Women’s Poetry is a fiery look into the troubles plaguing modern women in a convenient eBook format. Poets Kelli Russell Agodon and Annette Spaulding-Convy, who are co-editors of the Crab Review Press, have teamed up to take a poetic eye to the trials and tribulations facing women in our contemporary society. The anthology features the works of female poets such as Kim Addonizio, Nin Andrews, Madeline deFrees, Dorianne Laux, Patricia Smith, and many more. Each writer takes a unique look on what they think are the main problems facing modern women today and how difficult it can be as a “strong women” in our patriarch society.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014||No Comments »|
Deepak Chaswal has been steadily gaining international acclaim thanks to his poetry. His first collection, Meeting With Christ and Other Poems, is a unique look not only at Christian spirituality but also all the different belief systems that are out there in the world.
Unlike the usual traditional Christian hymns and prayers, the Christ that appears in Chaswal’s poetry is more human than divine. He’s not some smiling figure on a cloud—no, this Christ is someone that the narrator can actually seek out in Jerusalem and have a lovely in-depth conversation with. Much like the Biblical Christ, the poetic form of the Christian Messiah is all about a global movement that will return mankind to their essential humanity. He dislikes greed, selfishness, and the high-tech world that we inhabit because he feels that it’s turning humanity into self-absorbed idiots who can’t see our true potential for goodness.
However, aside from the usual Christian figures of a Messiah figure, angels, etc, Chaswal also explores Eastern religions. The blending of Eastern and Western milieu creates a beautiful poetry collection that not only honors the common themes found in all religions but also the rich imagery that will leave readers feeling spiritually renewed, no matter what their personal beliefs may be.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Thursday, March 20th, 2014||1 Comment »|
Poet Cecilia Llompart’s debut collection allows her readers to sip from the glass of human emotion and experience all that our souls have to offer. While many of the poems published within are full of subtlety and scale, which invites readers to reflect several times on the meaning of the words within, she also gives a unique view of the world around us as well. By taking a metaphorical time-lapse camera and giving her readers a pair of binoculars to fully examine not only her thoughts on the world but also our own experiences as humans, Llompart shows the beauty in being still and observing everything around you.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Thursday, March 13th, 2014||1 Comment »|
Billy Collins is a name you probably heard before. He has been hailed as “the most popular poet in America.” His poetry is even on display in subways and on the back of Metrocards. Achieving a level of fame most poets covet, Collins regularly sells out events and has served twice as the United States Poet Laureate from 2001-2003 and again from 2004-2006. During his second term as Poet Laureate, Collins was picked to be the New York State Poet for 2004.
Born on March 22nd, 1941, Collins is best known for his conversational poetry that is upbeat and witty. However, his poems also reveal a quirky and tender side, especially when it revolves around everyday routines and even on poetry itself. Collins admits that his work often appeals to people because he’s not afraid to be domestic, middle-class, and unabashedly “suburban” in his poetry.
|Recommended by Amanda Ferris||Tuesday, February 25th, 2014||No Comments »|