If you’re the person who blurts out “I’m a poet and I didn’t even know it,” whenever anything related to poetry pops up in conversation, or if you’ve ever uttered the even more brazen of the well-worn poetry phrases — “Poetry is dead” — keep reading. My non-poetic friends, this is a judgment free zone.
But this should serve as a reminder that there are lots (and lots, and lots) of poets that you should be reading, whether you’ve read much poetry in the past or not.
The poets below, all highlighted by the Poetry Foundation, have vastly shaped the writing landscape in the U.S., transforming words and lives in the process. Even when venturing outside of traditional conceptions of poetry, with some poets here writing novels, short stories, and lyrics, they have all done one thing core to poetry with exceeding grace and skill: They’ve routinely elevated language itself, stringing together words in the uniquely astonishing way that poets do. Read more…
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