Entropy presents some of their favorite selections as nominated by the diverse staff and team, as well as nominations from our readers. This list brings together some of our favorite poetry books & collections published in 2019. Here are the Civitellians on the list…
Dunce by Mary Ruefle (DG 2017): In Dunce Mary Ruefle returns to the poetic practice that has always been at her core. With her startlingly fresh sensibility, she enraptures us in poem after poem by the intensity of her attention, with the imaginative flourishes of her being-in-the-world, always deep with mysteries, unexpected appearances, and abiding yearning.
The Tradition by Jericho Brown (CRF 2015): The Tradition details the normalization of evil and its history at the intersection of the past and the personal. Brown’s poetic concerns are both broad and intimate, and at their very core a distillation of the incredibly human: What is safety? Who is this nation? Where does freedom truly lie? Brown makes mythical pastorals to question the terrors to which we’ve become accustomed, and to celebrate how we survive. Poems of fatherhood, legacy, blackness, queerness, worship, and trauma are propelled into stunning clarity by Brown’s mastery, and his invention of the duplex―a combination of the sonnet, the ghazal, and the blues―is testament to his formal skill. The Tradition is a cutting and necessary collection, relentless in its quest for survival while revelling in a celebration of contradiction.
Brute by Emily Skaja (CRF 2019): “What happens when rage and grief transform us, when our bodily fury makes us feel animal? What language do we use to howl such feral moments? These are the questions that animate Skaja’s taut, ferocious debut, Brute. . . . This is a book about survival, and a welcome, confident debut.” —The New York Times Book Review
Read the complete list here.