If I read a book and it makes my whole body so cold, no fire can warm me. I know that is poetry. If I feel physically as if the top of my head were taken off, I know that is poetry, wrote Emily Dickinson, whose life was dedicated to the hundreds of poems she poured herself into. Poetry, an honest and intimate art form, is a way to question humanity through the use of words and rhythm.
Let’s start with the highest-profile poet in recent memory: 22-year-old national youth poet laureate Amanda Gorman, whose poem “The Hill We Climb” awed viewers at the presidential inaugural ceremony, where she was the youngest poet ever to recite. This book is a keepsake edition of that famous poem and makes a poignant gift for graduations and other occasions. (She’s slated to release two more books later this year.)
Rupi Kaur constantly embraces growth, and in the homebody, she walks readers through a reflective and intimate journey visiting the past, the present, and the potential of the self. homebody is a collection of raw, honest conversations with oneself – reminding readers to fill up on love, acceptance, community, and family, and embrace change. Illustrated by the author, themes of nature and nurture, light and dark, rest here.
I dive into the well of my body
and end up in another world
everything I need
already exists in me
there’s no need
to look anywhere else
The beauty and spirit of Maya Angelou’s words live on in this complete collection of poetry, including her inaugural poem “On the Pulse of Morning”
Throughout her illustrious career in letters, Maya Angelou gifted, healed and inspired the world with her words. Now the beauty and spirit of those words live on in this new and complete collection of poetry that reflects and honors the writer’s remarkable life.
Every poetic phrase, every poignant verse can be found within the pages of this sure-to-be-treasured volume—from her reflections on African American life and hardship in the compilation Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water ’fore I Die (“Though there’s one thing that I cry for / I believe enough to die for / That is every man’s responsibility to man”) to her revolutionary celebrations of womanhood in the poem “Still I Rise”(“Out of the huts of history’s shame / I rise / Up from a past that’s rooted in pain / I rise”) to her “On the Pulse of Morning” tribute at President William Jefferson Clinton’s inauguration (“Lift up your eyes upon / The day breaking for you. / Give birth again / To the dream.”).
Maya Angelou: The Complete Poetry also features her final long-form poems, including “A Brave and Startling Truth,” “Amazing Peace,” “His Day Is Done,” and the honest and endearing Mother:
“I feared if I let you go
You would leave me eternally.
You smiled at my fears, saying
I could not stay in your lap forever”
In this deeply intimate second poetry collection, Ocean Vuong searches for life among the aftershocks of his mother’s death, embodying the paradox of sitting within grief while being determined to survive beyond it. Shifting through memory, and in concert with the themes of his novel On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, Vuong contends with personal loss, the meaning of family, and the cost of being the product of an American war in America. At once vivid, brave, and propulsive, Vuong’s poems circle fragmented lives to find both restorations as well as the epicenter of the break.
The author of the critically acclaimed poetry collection Night Sky With Exit Wounds, winner of the 2016 Whiting Award, the 2017 T. S. Eliot Prize, and a 2019 MacArthur fellow, Vuong writes directly to our humanity without losing sight of the current moment. These poems represent more innovative and daring experimentation with language and form, illuminating how the themes we perennially live in and question are truly inexhaustible. Bold and prescient, and a testament to tenderness in the face of violence, Time Is a Mother is a return and a forging forth all at once.
“Paul Tran’s debut collection of poems is indelible, this remarkable voice transforming itself as you read, eventually transforming you.” —Alexander Chee, author of How to Write an Autobiographical Novel
“This powerful debut marshals narrative lyrics and stark beauty to address personal and political violence.” —New York Times Book Review
A profound meditation on physical, emotional, and psychological transformation in the aftermath of imperial violence and interpersonal abuse, from a poet both “tender and unflinching” (Khadijah Queen)
Visceral and astonishing, Paul Tran’s debut poetry collection All the Flowers Kneeling investigates intergenerational trauma, sexual violence, and U.S. imperialism in order to radically alter our understanding of freedom, power, and control. In poems of desire, gender, bodies, legacies, and imagined futures, Tran’s poems elucidate the complex and harrowing processes of reckoning and recovery, enhanced by innovative poetic forms that mirror the nonlinear emotional and psychological experiences of trauma survivors. At once grand and intimate, commanding and deeply vulnerable, All the Flowers Kneeling revels in rediscovering and reconfiguring the self and ultimately becomes an essential testament to the human capacity for resilience, endurance, and love.