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Cover image for Cry Back My Sea
Stunning poems of obsession, loss, and the desire for a renewed self, from the award-winning poet

“I thought I h...
FPO

Enter to win a collection of Knopf Poetry!

1 lucky winner will be chosen! 📚✨ Titles include:

Cover image for Cry Back My Sea
Stunning poems of obsession, loss, and the desire for a renewed self, from the award-winning poet

“I thought I had left behind the darkness / of the heart,” Arvio confesses in the poem “Small War.” The love Arvio traces in these pages is indeed a battle, one in which the best-laid plans are shattered. Rarely has a poet tackled intimate love with so much invention and bravery.
 
In poem after poem, we meet the troubling lover whose nearness and force undoes her. There are moments of reprieve: “my naked body and budding pleasure / in the weather of your presence. / Not whether your presence but how.” The voice is vulnerable, self-knowing, often funny; the poet seems to be writing these poems to save herself from a devastating passion. Her weapons are a cascade of brash, freely spoken lines and a powerful command of metaphor, wielded in a search for meaning and understanding.
 
These breathtaking love poems make the collection Arvio’s most universal to date.
Cover image for The Octopus Museum
Now in paperback, this collection of bold and scathingly beautiful feminist poems imagines what comes after our current age of environmental destruction, racism, sexism, and divisive politics.

Informed as much by Brenda Shaughnessy's worst fears as a mother as they are by her superb craft as a poet, the poems in The Octopus Museum blaze forth from her pen: in these pages, we see that what was once a generalized fear for our children is now hyper-reasonable, specific, and multiple: school shootings, nuclear attack, loss of health care, a polluted planet. As Shaughnessy conjures our potential future, she movingly (and often with humor) envisions an age where cephalopods might rule over humankind, a fate she suggests we may just deserve after destroying their oceans. These heartbreaking, terrified poems are the battle cry of a woman who is fighting for the survival of the world she loves, and a stirring exhibition of who we are as a civilization.
Cover image for Stones
A book of loss, looking back, and what binds us to life, by a towering poetic talent, called "one of the poetry stars of his generation" (Los Angeles Times).

"We sleep long, / if not sound," Kevin Young writes early on in this exquisite gathering of poems, "Till the end/ we sing / into the wind." In scenes and settings that circle family and the generations in the American South--one poem, "Kith," exploring that strange bedfellow of "kin"--the speaker and his young son wander among the stones of their ancestors. "Like heat he seeks them, / my son, thirsting / to learn those / he don't know / are his dead."
 
Whether it's the fireflies of a Louisiana summer caught in a mason jar (doomed by their collection), or his grandmother, Mama Annie, who latches the screen door when someone steps out for just a moment, all that makes up our flickering precarious joy, all that we want to protect, is lifted into the light in this moving book. Stones becomes an ode to Young's home places and his dear departed, and to what of them—of us—poetry can save.
Cover image for Ledger
A pivotal book of personal, ecological, and political reckoning tuned toward issues of consequence to all who share this world's current and future fate"Some of the most important poetry in the world today" (Naomi Shihab Nye, The New York Times Magazine).
 

Ledger's pages hold the most important work yet by Jane Hirshfield, one of our most celebrated contemporary poets. From the already much-quoted opening lines of despair and defiance ("Let them not say: we did not see it. / We saw"), Hirshfield's poems inscribe a registry, both personal and communal, of our present-day predicaments.
 
They call us to deepened dimensions of thought, feeling, and action. They summon our responsibility to sustain one another and the earth while pondering, acutely and tenderly, the crises of refugees, justice, and climate. They consider "the minimum mass for a whale, for a language, an ice cap," recognize the intimacies of connection, and meditate upon doubt and contentment, a library book with previously dog-eared corners, the hunger for surprise, and the debt we owe this world's continuing beauty.
 
Hirshfield's signature alloy of fact and imagination, clarity and mystery, inquiry, observation, and embodied emotion has created a book of indispensable poems by a "modern master" (The Washington Post).
Cover image for Machete
This fresh voice in American poetry wields lyric pleasure and well-honed insight against a cruel century that would kill us with a thousand cuts.
 
"Morín's writing uses the mundane details of everyday life . . . as a jumping-off point for creating fascinating and philosophical worlds." —LitHub


"Dios aprieta, pero no ahorca" ("God squeezes, but He doesn't strangle")--the epigraph of Machete--sets the stage for a powerful poet who summons a variety of ways to endure life when there's an invisible hand at your throat. Tomás Morín hails from the coastal plains of Texas, and explores a world where identity and place shift like that ever-changing shore.

In these poems, culture crashes like waves and leaves behind Billie Holiday and the CIA, disco balls and Dante, the Bible and Jerry Maguire. They are long, lean, and dazzle in their telling: "Whiteface" is a list of instructions for people stopped by the police; "Duct Tape" lauds our domestic life from the point of view of the tape itself.

One part Groucho Marx, one part Job, Morín considers our obsession with suffering--"the pain in which we trust"--and finds that the best answer to our predicament is sometimes anger, sometimes laughter, but always via the keen line between them that may be the sharpest weapon we have.
Cover image for Stereo(TYPE)
A radical, urgent collection of poems about Blackness, the self, and the dismantling of corrupt powers in the fight for freedom.
 
A PEN America Literary Award Winner


Jonah Mixon-Webster works at the intersections of space and the body, race and region, sexuality and class. Stereo(TYPE), his debut collection of poetry, is a reckoning and a force, a revision of our most sacred mythologies, and a work of documentary reporting from Mixon-Webster’s hometown of Flint, Michigan, where clean tap water remains an uncertainty and the aftermath of racist policies persist.
 
Challenging stereotypes through scenes that scatter with satire, violence, and the extreme vagaries of everyday life, Mixon-Webster invents visual/sonic forms, conceptualizes poems as transcripts and frequently asked questions, and dives into dreamscapes and modern tragedies, deconstructing the very foundations America is built on. Interrogating language and the ways we wield it as both sword and shield, Stereo(TYPE) is a one-of-a-kind, rapturous collection of vital and beautiful poems.
 

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