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The Best American Poetry 2013

by David Lehman

Over the last twenty-five years, the Best American Poetry series has become an annual rite of autumn, eagerly awaited and hotly debated: "an essential purchase" (The Washington Post). This year, guest editor Denise Duhamel brings her wit and enthusiasm and her commitment to poetry in all its wide variety to bear on her choices for The Best American Poetry 2013. These acts of imagination--from known stars and exciting newcomers--testify to the vitality of an art form that continues to endure and flourish, defying dour predictions of its demise, in the digital age. This edition of the most important poetry anthology in the United States opens with David Lehman's incisive "state of the art" essay and Denise Duhamel's engagingly candid discussion of the seventy-five poems that made her final cut. Anna Maria Hong, Timothy Donnelly, Mary Ruefle, and Major Jackson. And as always, the anthology opens with David Lehman's incisive look at the current state of American poetry.

The Best American Poetry 2014

by David Lehman Terrance Hayes

Edited by the National Book Award-winning poet Terrance Hayes, the foremost annual anthology of contemporary American poetry returns: "A 'best' anthology that really lives up to its title" (Chicago Tribune).The first book of poetry that Terrance Hayes ever bought was the 1990 edition of The Best American Poetry, edited by Jorie Graham. Hayes was then an undergrad at a small South Carolina college. He has since published four highly honored books of poetry, is a professor of poetry at the University of Pittsburgh, has appeared multiple times in the series, and is one of today's most decorated poets. His brazen, restless poems capture the diversity of American culture with singular artistry, grappling with facile assumptions about identity and the complex repercussions of race history in this country. Always eagerly anticipated, the 2014 volume of The Best American Poetry begins with David Lehman's "state-of-the-art" foreword followed by an inspired introduction from Terrance Hayes on his picks for the best American poems of the past year. Following the poems is the apparatus for which the series has won acclaim: notes from the poets about the writing of their poems.

The Best American Poetry 2015

by Sherman Alexie David Lehman

The premier anthology of contemporary American poetry continues with an exceptional volume edited by award-winning novelist and poet Sherman Alexie.Since its debut in 1988, The Best American Poetry has become a mainstay for the direction and spirit of American poetry. Each volume in the series presents the year's most extraordinary new poems and writers. Guest editor Sherman Alexie's picks for The Best American Poetry 2015 highlight the depth and breadth of the American experience. Culled from electronic and print journals, the poems showcase some of our leading luminaries--Amy Gerstler, Terrance Hayes, Ron Padgett, Jane Hirshfield--and introduce a number of outstanding younger poets taking their place in the limelight. A leading figure since his breakout poetry collection The Business of Fancydancing in 1992, Sherman Alexie won the National Book Award for his novel The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. He describes himself as "lucky enough to be a full-time writer" and has written short stories, novels, screenplays, and essays--but he is at his core a poet. As always, series editor David Lehman's foreword assessing the state of the art kicks off the book, followed by an introductory essay in which Alexie discusses his selections. The Best American Poetry 2015 is a guide to who's who and what's happening in American poetry today.

Best American Poetry 2016

by David Lehman Edward Hirsch

The premier anthology of contemporary American poetry continues--guest edited this year by award-winning poet Edward Hirsch, a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and the president of The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.The Best American Poetry series is "a vivid snapshot of what a distinguished poet finds exciting, fresh and memorable" (Robert Pinsky); a guiding light for the mood and shape of modern American poetry. Each year, this series presents essential American verse and the poets who create it. Truly the "best" American poetry has appeared in this venerable collection for over twenty-five years. A poet of decided brilliance since his 1981 debut collection, For the Sleepwalkers, Edward Hirsch curates a thoughtful selection of poetry for 2016 and an Introduction to be savored. Jumpha Lahiri said of Hirsch, "The trademarks of his poems are...to be intimate but restrained, to be tender without being sentimental, to witness life without flinching, and above all, to isolate and preserve those details of our existence so often overlooked, so easily forgotten, so essential to our souls." Hirsch's choices for this collection reflect the soul of poetry in America. As ever, series editor David Lehman opens this year's edition with an insider's guide and a thoughtful contemplation of poetry today.

The Best of the Best American Poetry

by David Lehman

Every year since 1988 a major poet has selected seventy-five poems for publication in The Best American Poetry. The series has quickly grown in both sales and prestige, as poetry itself has seen a remarkable resurgence in popularity and vitality, fueled by established poets at the peak of their powers and a new generation of daring voices. As we approach the millennium, now is the opportune moment to take stock of american poetry and choose the work that will stand the test of time. Harold Bloom, a commanding presence on the American literary state, has read all 750 poems in the series and has picked the "best of the best." He precedes his selections with a compelling and highly provocative essay on the state of American letters, in which he fiercely champions the endangered realm of the aesthetic over the politically correct. Diverse in style, method, and metaphor, the seventy-five poems Bloom has chosen go a long way toward defining a contemporary canon of American poetry. This exciting volume reflects not only the taste of the current editor, but the predilections of the all-star list of poets who have contributed their time and intellect to make this series what is today: a "valuable, invaluable, supervaluable" (Beloit Poetry Journal) record of an ever-changing, always exciting art.

Best of the Best American Poetry

by David Lehman Robert Pinsky

Robert Pinsky, distinguished poet and man of letters, selects the top 100 poems from twenty-five years of The Best American PoetryThe Best American Poetry is the most prestigious poetry publication in the United States and has been so almost from its inception in 1988. Hotly debated, keenly monitored, ardently advocated (or denounced), obsessively scrutinized, every volume in the series consists of seventy-five poems chosen by a major American poet--from John Ashbery in 1988 to Mark Doty in 2012 with stops along the way for such poets as Jorie Graham, Charles Simic, A.R. Ammons, Louise Gluck, James Tate, Adrienne Rich, Paul Muldoon, Billy Collins, Heather McHugh, and Kevin Young. Out of the 1,875 poems that have appeared in The Best American Poetry, here are the 100 that Robert Pinsky has chosen for this special edition. Each volume in the series is represented, and the result is a pleasure-giving book of twice-honored poems that readers will find indispensable. The Best of the Best American Poetry is proof positive that the art form is flourishing. The volume is a reminder, too, of the role this anthology series has played in the resurgence of interest in American poetry in the last quarter century. With valuable introductory essays by guest editor Pinsky and series editor David Lehman, The Best of the Best American Poetry includes up-to-date biographies of the poets along with the comments they made when the poems were originally selected.

Best of the Best American Poetry: 25th Anniversary Edition

by David Lehman Robert Pinsky

Robert Pinsky, distinguished poet and man of letters, selects the top 100 poems from twenty-five years of The Best American PoetryThis special edition celebrates twenty-five years of the Best American Poetry series, which has become an institution. From its inception in 1988, it has been hotly debated, keenly monitored, ardently advocated (or denounced), and obsessively scrutinized. Each volume consists of seventy-five poems chosen by a major American poet acting as guest editor--from John Ashbery in 1988 to Mark Doty in 2012, with stops along the way for such poets as Charles Simic, A. R. Ammons, Louise Glück, Adrienne Rich, Billy Collins, Heather McHugh, and Kevin Young. Out of the 1,875 poems that have appeared in The Best American Poetry, here are 100 that Robert Pinsky, the distinguished poet and man of letters, has chosen for this milestone edition.

Collected Poems

by David Lehman Joseph Ceravolo Parker Smathers Rosemary Ceravolo

Like an underground river, the astonishing poems of Joseph Ceravolo have nurtured American poetry for fifty years, a presence deeply felt but largely invisible. Collected Poems offers the first full portrait of Ceravolo's aesthetic trajectory, bringing to light the highly original voice that was operating at an increasing remove from the currents of the time. From a poetics associated with Frank O'Hara and John Ashbery to an ever more contemplative, deeply visionary poetics similar in sensibility to Zen and Dante, William Blake and St. John of the Cross, this collection shows how Ceravolo's poetry takes on a direct, quiet lyricism: intensely dedicated to the natural and spiritual life of the individual. As Ron Silliman notes, Ceravolo's later work reveals him to be "one of the most emotionally open, vulnerable and self-knowing poets of his generation." Many new pieces, including the masterful long poem "The Hellgate," are published here for the first time. This volume is a landmark edition for American poetry, and includes an introduction by David Lehman.

The Daily Mirror

by David Lehman

Following in the footsteps of such poets as Emily Dickinson, William Stafford, and Frank O'Hara, David Lehman began writing a poem a day in 1996 and found the experience so rewarding that he continued for the next two years. During that time, some of these poems appeared in various journals and on Web sites, including The Poetry Daily site, which ran thirty of Lehman's poems in as many days throughout the month of April 1998. For The Daily Mirror, Lehman has selected the best of these "daily poems" -- each tied to a specific occasion or situation -- and telescoped two years into one. Spontaneous and immediate, but always finely crafted and spiced with Lehman's signature irony and wit, the poems are akin to journal entries charting the passing of time, the deaths of great men and women, the news of the day. Jazz, Sinatra, the weather, love, poetry and poets, movies, and New York City are among their recurring themes. A departure from Lehman's previous work, this unique volume provides the intimacy of a diary, full of passion, sound, and fury, but with all the aesthetic pleasure of poetry. More a party of poems than a standard collection, The Daily Mirror presents an exciting new way to think about poetry.

The Evening Sun

by David Lehman

The eagerly awaited follow-up to his critically acclaimed collection The Daily Mirror, The Evening Sun gathers together 150 of David Lehman's favorite "daily poems" from 1999 and 2000 into a brilliant chronicle of a poet's heart and mind as the last century ends and a new one begins.

A Fine Romance: Jewish Songwriters, American Songs

by David Lehman

With a poet's eye for language and nuance, Lehman takes a personal journey into the past of American music, showing how the songs that we view as quintessentially American were almost all written by Jews, many of them immigrants. Recounting the stories behind numerous songs and shows, the author explains how Jewish songsmiths combined their native plaintiveness and wit with Black blues to create a distinctively American musical form. With analytical skill, wit, and exuberance, Lehman helps readers understand how natural it is that Wizard of Oz composer Harold Arlen was the son of a cantor who incorporated "Over the Rainbow" into his Sabbath liturgy Annotation c2010 Book News, Inc. , Portland, OR (booknews. com)

Great American Prose Poems: From Poe to the Present

by David Lehman

A prose poem is a poem written in prose rather than verse. But what does that really mean? Is it an indefinable hybrid? An anomaly in the history of poetry? Are the very words "prose poem" an oxymoron? This groundbreaking anthology edited by celebrated poet David Lehman, editor of The Best American Poetry series, traces the form in all its dazzling variety from Poe and Emerson to Auden and Ashbery and on, right up to the present. In his brilliant and lucid introduction, Lehman explains that a prose poem can make use of all the strategies and tactics of poetry, but works in sentences rather than lines. He also summarizes the prose poem's French heritage, its history in the United States, and the salient differences between verse and prose. Arranged chronologically to allow readers to trace the gradual development of this hybrid genre, the poems anthologized here include important works from such masters of American literature as Gertrude Stein, William Carlos Williams, e. e. cummings, Hart Crane, Ernest Hemingway, James Schuyler, Allen Ginsberg, Frank O'Hara, and Elizabeth Bishop. Contemporary mainstays and emerging poets -- Robert Bly, John Ashbery, Charles Simic, Billy Collins, Russell Edson, James Tate, Anne Carson, Yusef Komunyakaa, and Lydia Davis, among them -- are represented with their best work in the field. The prose poem is beginning to enjoy a tremendous upswing in popularity. Readers of this marvelous collection, a must-have for anyone interested in the current state of the art, will learn why.

The Last Avant-Garde: The Making of the New York School of Poets

by David Lehman

The story of how four young poets reinvented literature and turned New York into the art capital of the world. A richly detailed portrait of one of the great movements in American arts and letters, the book covers the years 1948-1966 and focuses on four fast poet friends Lehman brings to vivid life the extraordinary creative ferment of the time and place and the powerful influence that a group of visual artists had on the literary efforts of the New York School.

New and Selected Poems

by David Lehman

A major collection of poems from one of our most accomplished poets, the prominent man of letters behind The Best American Poetry series.Drawing from a wealth of material produced over the course of more than forty years, David Lehman's New and Selected Poems displays the remarkable range of his poetic genius. From the beginning Lehman has combined the traditional with the experimental, intellect with passion, creating a singular body of work in a manner all his own. Beginning with a selection of compelling new poems that feature the poet's customary wit and ingenuity and add a layer of surprise and suspense, the book follows with carefully selected pieces from Lehman's seven full-length books of poetry since 1986: Yeshiva Boys (2009), When a Woman Loves a Man (2005), The Evening Sun (2002), The Daily Mirror: A Journal in Poetry (2000), Valentine Place (1996), Operation Memory (1990), and An Alternative to Speech (1986). A group of uncollected works, including hard-to find early poems from the late 1960s and 1970s, rounds out the volume. These are poems that captivate as they stimulate thought, poems that capture the romance, irony, and pathos of love, and poems that are lyrical and lovely in unexpected, sometimes even comic ways. A master of his craft, Lehman is as fluent in the prose poem as in the sonnet, the sestina, the villanelle, and verse forms of his own invention. He departs from autobiography not only in fictional forays but in poems that ponder the lives of World Historical Individuals (Napoleon, Wittgenstein, Freud), the persistence of ancient myths in modern life, the mysteries of love and desire, and his own heritage as the son of Holocaust refugees. Lehman's poems are dazzling in their evocation of the recent past. As Mary Jo Bang has written, "the whole of a world is here, and the remnants of an era--from Dinah Shore to Bob Dylan, from Hitler to Nixon." This is as inspiring and thought-provoking and beautiful a book as any David Lehman has written.

Sinatra's Century

by David Lehman

In celebration of his one hundredth birthday, an enchanting look back at the life and times of the greatest entertainer in American history, Frank SinatraSinatra's Century is an irresistible collection of one hundred short reflections on the man, his music, and his larger-than-life story by a lifetime fan who also happens to be one of the most prominent voices in contemporary American poetry. David Lehman uses each of these short pieces to look back on a single facet of the entertainer's story--from his childhood in Hoboken to his emergence as "The Voice" in the 1940s to the wild professional and romantic fluctuations that followed.Lehman offers new insights and revisits familiar stories--Sinatra's dramatic love affairs with some of the most beautiful stars in Hollywood, including Lauren Bacall, Marilyn Monroe, and Ava Gardner; his fall from grace in the late 1940s and resurrection during the "Capitol Years" of the 1950s; his bonds with the rest of the Rat Pack; and his long tenure as the Chairman of the Board, the indomitable elder statesman of popular music inspiring generations of artists, from Bobby Darin to Bono to Bob Dylan.Filled with vibrant photos from all stages of his career, the book includes lists of favorite performances; engaging insights on what made Sinatra both the model of American machismo and the epitome of romance; and clear-eyed assessments of the foibles that impacted his life and work. Warm and enlightening, Sinatra's Century is a full-throated appreciation of Sinatra for the twenty-first-century fan.

When a Woman Loves a Man

by David Lehman

These poems capture the romance, irony, and pathos of love; they movingly chronicle days in post-9/11 New York and bring a fresh perspective to an array of subjects -- from the Brooklyn Bridge to Gertrude Stein to Buddhism. When a Woman Loves a Man is playful, inventive, and as amusing as it is clever; it is the work of a poet at the height of his lyrical and reflective powers.

Yeshiva Boys: Poems

by David Lehman

David Lehman, a poet of wit, ingenuity, and formidable skill, draws upon his heritage as a grandson of Holocaust victims and offers a stirring autobiographical collection of poems that is his most ambitious work to date. It covers an expansive range of subjects -- from love, sex, and romance to repentance, humility, the meaning of democracy, Existentialism, modern European history, military intelligence, and the rituals associated with faith and prayer. The title poem, "Yeshiva Boys," is a work in twelve parts that blends the elements of espionage fiction, memory, history, and moral philosophy. It reflects David's experience as a student in an orthodox Yeshiva, and it, along with many other poems in the book, explores what it means to be a Jew in America, what is gained and lost in assimilating to secular culture, how to understand the peculiar destiny of the Jewish people, and how to reconcile the existence of God with the knowledge of evil. Beautiful, provocative, and accessible, this is David Lehman's most inspired collection.

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