This month at “WesPress”—as we are known on our campus—we are celebrating Spring and National Poetry Month! Here are our latest and forthcoming poetry books. Use discount code Q301 if you order to receive 30% off.
Books for Spring 2022
The Neverending Quest for the Other Shore Sylvie Kandé; Alexander Dickow, translator
“Sylvie Kandé, through the telling of a legendary African expedition, has forged for herself a unique language, open, daring, off the beaten track. She is truly an original, writing at the crossroads of Africa, Europe, and America.”
—Paol Keineg, professor emeritus of romance studies, Duke University
In Kandé’s epic poem, African history collides with the contemporary reality of migration. Dazzling in its scope, the poem swings between epic stylization, griot storytelling, and colloquial banter, capturing an astonishing range of human experience. Kandé makes of the migrant a new hero, a future hero whose destiny has not yet taken shape, whose stories are still waiting to be told in their fullness and grandeur: the neverending quest has only just begun.
The Writing of an Hour Brenda Coultas
“These beautifully crafted pieces observe how time unlocks registers of the soul: “why are we here if not to be makers.” Coultas quilts across mind/land/scapes with corporeal delicacy. To embody an hour as a glossary for perception, is to relish where today’s sentence can take us.”
—Edwin Torres, author of Quanundrum (i will be your many angled thing)
Language as a means to transcend the quotidian and to explore the senses. What actually happens within the revolution of the clock’s hands? In The Writing of an Hour the poet considers the effort and the deliberateness that brings her to her desk each day. Despite domestic and day job demands and pandemic lockdown, Coultas forges connections to the sublime and wonders what it means to be from the Americas.
Finalists Rae Armantrout
“Rae thinks in poetry by now that must be it. That one can turn out book after perfect book and it turns out they are all made of poems but what are poems made of. Rae I think. What she is.”
—Eileen Myles, author of For Now (Why I Write)
A double book by Pulitzer Prize winning poet Rae Armantrout.
What will we call the last generation before the looming end times? With Finalists Rae Armantrout suggests one option. Brilliant and irascible, playful and intense, Armantrout nails the current moment’s debris fields and super computers, its sizzling malaise and confusion, with an exemplary immensity of heart and a boundless capacity for humor. The poems in this book find (and create) beauty in midst of the ongoing crisis.
Asked What Has Changed Ed Roberson, new in paperback
“In Asked What Has Changed, Ed Roberson sits by the window of his high-rise, knowing that “we might not be fast eno ugh/to out distance events,” and sees what was and ‘wasn’t here before the hurricane.’ He is a witness to the terrible beauty of our irreversible changing world.”
—John Yau, Recipient of the 2018 Jackson Prize in Poetry
Award-winning poet Ed Roberson confronts the realities of an era in which the fate of humanity and the very survival of our planet are uncertain. The poems in this collection respond to both ecological crisis and social instability and unrest. Throughout, Roberson takes up the ancient spiritual concern—the ephemerality of life—and gives us a new language to process the feeling of living in a century on the brink.
The Age of Phillis Honoreé Fanonne Jeffers, new in paperback
“With her latest volume, award-winning poet Jeffers presents an arresting and meticulously researched collection of poems imagining the life of remarkable life and revolutionary work of Phillis Wheatley.”
—Karla Strand, Ms. magazine
In the shadow of the American Revolution, a young, African American woman named Phillis Wheatley Peters published a book of poetry, Poems on various Subjects, Religious and Moral (1773). When Wheatley’s book appeared, her words would challenge Western prejudices about African and female intellectual capabilities. Her words would astound many and irritate others, but one thing was clear: this young woman was extraordinary. Based on fifteen years of archival research, The Age of Phillis, by award-winning writer Honorée Fanonne Jeffers, imagines the life and times of Wheatley: her childhood with her parents in the Gambia, West Africa, her life with her white American owners, her friendship with Obour Tanner, her marriage to the enigmatic John Peters, and her untimely death at the age of about thirty-three.