Tuesday, February 6, 2018

January Poetry Roundup

After I made my goal to read more poetry in 2018, I came across the problem of trying to figure out how I wanted to talk about them on the blog. And in the end, I decided that rather than doing a full review post for poetry books—many of them are short—that I would do a single monthly roundup of what I’ve been reading.
The Universe of Us by Lang Leav
  • The first poetry book I tackled in January was The Universe of Us by Lang Leav. Prior to this book, I’d never read anything by Leav but have heard a lot of good things about her work. Suffice it to say, I was interested. I’m not the best judge of what’s good or bad poetry—I haven’t read enough of it—but I enjoyed this collection. There were many poems about love and hurt, among other things. Many of them were relatable, such as Ode to Writers on page 93, which was so true that it almost hurt. Among my other favorites were Your Life, Today, the beautiful simplicity of Shooting Stars, and the truths that loudly resonated in Conversations. All-in-all, The Universe of Us wasn’t a bad one to start with....

The Portable Nineteenth-Century African American Women Writers edited by Hollis Robins and Henry Louise Gates Jr.

  • Moving on, my second read was this collection edited by Hollis Robins and Henry Louise Gates Jr.. The basics: This book includes everything from poetry to fiction, essays, speeches, and personal accounts, among other things. It's a thought provoking and poignant collection that's an essential must read that also inspires further reading. It's history. And it dealt with accounts of slavery, discrimination after the Civil War, and hope and empowerment through religion and education from the viewpoint of African American women. There was work by writers such as Mary Prince, Pauline Hopkins, Julia Collins, and many others. I also enjoyed the fiction and poetry included in this book like the excerpt from Sarah E. Farro’s 1891 novel, True Love, and Mary E. Ash Lee’s poem, Afmerica (1885). As for the the poetry featured in this book, it's best described as intense. These poems often dealt with subjects that directly correlated with African American Women of the time, and acutely reflected their worries, observations, and hope for a better future—subjects that were reflected throughout the entire collection. As such, The Portable Nineteenth-Century African American Women Writers was one of my favorite reads from January....

Comments + Looking ahead…

In January, I only got to two poetry books. It was a pretty good start on my goal; although, I hope to get to more than two in February. The good news is that more of  my library holds have come in, and I've compiled a list of which ones to read next....

Do you have any poetry recommendations?


  1. Oh I think you gave me a couple of good rec's! I am a bit picky on my poetry, but I would suggest The Moon is Always Female. I got that a long time ago from a friend and still like to reread it from time to time.

    1. I haven't heard of that one before. Thanks for mentioning it. I'm going to add it to my TBR list.


Comments are appreciated and always welcome. :)

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...