Sunday 13 December 2009

My favourite poetry collections of 2009

Here is my top 10 poetry collections of 2009. I want to preface this list of personal favourites with the same disclaimer as last year’s: I'm probably forgetting something here, and I haven't got around to reading all the books I've meant to read this year, and I do have a stack of books I've bought but haven't read yet, so try not to take this too seriously. If your book isn't here, I apologize. You know I think you're brilliant. These are not ranked (stopping at ten is arbitrary enough), rather, they are listed in alphabetical order by author:

1) To Be Read in 500 Years by Albert Goldbarth (Graywolf Press)

2) A Village Life by Louise Glück (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)

3) Inseminating the Elephant by Lucia Perillo (Copper Canyon Press)

4) Lousy Explorers by Laisha Rosnau (Nightwood Editions)

5) Mr. Skylight by Ed Skoog (Copper Canyon Press)

6) Pigeon by Karen Solie (House of Anansi Press)

7) Something Burned Along the Southern Border by Robert Earl Stewart (The

Mansfield Press)

8) Reticent Bodies by Moez Surani (Wolsak & Wynn)

9) Selected Poems by Dara Weir (Wave Books)

10) Always Die Before Your Mother by Patrick Woodcock (ECW Press)

As usual, I don’t include books that I’ve edited for my own imprint with Insomniac Press, though I think these are also wonderful books, and I recommend them to you as well:

Wanton by Angela Hibbs

Porcupine Archery by Bill Howell

Naming the Mannequins by Nic Labriola

Honorable Mentions

There are simply too many fabulous books to fit on a list with only ten slots. Here are some other books that I loved from 2009, and I hope you will love them, too:

God of Missed Connections by Elizabeth Bachinsky (Nightwood Editions)

The Certainty Dream by Kate Hall (Coach House Books)

Word Comix by Charlie Smith (W.W. Norton & Company)

This Way Out by Carmine Starnino (Gaspereau Press)

Mole by Patrick Warner (House of Anansi Press)


Chris Banks said...

An absolute fabulous list Paul. Thanks for putting it together. For me, I would also add Kim Addonizio's "Lucifer at the Starlite", Philip Levine's "News of the World", B.H. Fairchild's "Usher" (thanks for the hot tip about this one!) and W.S. Merwin's "Shadow of Sirius" which Merwin recently won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize for in poetry.

Paul Vermeersch said...

I haven't read/ finished reading any of those, otherwise, they might have made my list, too. I also haven't reda Ashbery's latest yet, and the list goes on and on.