Saturday, August 30, 2008


My traveling schedule which has been in flux for several months now has flux-tuated again. I am now scheduled to leave the U.S.A. on Sept. 30, and I will be out for maybe a month-and-a-half in South America. Even if I have email, I certainly won't be blogging. What this means is that I've just extended the deadline for the next issue of Galatea Resurrects to Nov. 15, 2008.

This also means that if you wish to review any of the review copies, you need to tell me before Sept. 26 so that I'd have a chance to snailmail you the copy before I leave the country.

We continue to receive many lovely poetry publications hoping to receive some review and or engagement; please do go HERE for information for review copies and review submissions!

Email Moi at for questions. As ever, I am here to serve....


Friday, August 29, 2008


A poet imprisoned for hir views. A poet facing down a tank for hir views. A poet participating in a dangerous rally for hir views. A poet risking hir life for someone else or for a dangerous cause. A poet participating and even leading a revolt against a corrupt politician. A poet at the forefront of a revolution, not metaphorically but literally. A poet bleeding for hir views. A poet watching hir beloveds murdered for that poet's views. A poet hunted, then killed for hir views. I could go on. But these are what I think of when someone mentions the phrase "brave poet." Or in a related vein, the phrase "warrior poet."

What's the significance of "bravery" for a poet now becoming defined as the ability to make decisions that endanger said poet's likelihood of being published?

This blog post is dedicated to Emmanuel Lacaba. By living his poetry, he avoided debasing language. For you, Emmanuel, and brave poets like you -- I shall rip up my poetry books, stoke up a bonfire, and watch those published pages burn.

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Thursday, August 28, 2008


Jim McCrary has a huge collected chap works in progress. Here's moi blurb:
Love has a huge expanse and with this collection, Jim McCrary effectively shows how one of its forms can be "abuse" of language--nothing short, indeed, of "love(ing) it to death".
--Eileen Tabios

It took me all of three seconds to write that blurb. I think all blurbs, if they're not already being written within three seconds, should be written within three seconds. Most blurbs are as much about the blurber's identity anyway rather than blurb content. I'm honored Jim asked since he knows my name's good-for-nothing. Anyway, look forward to Jim's work forthcoming from ManyPenny Press!

But already released is Tim Gaze's fabulous and fabulously innovate glitchy, visual poetry NOOLOGY which Moi highly recommends. You all are familiar with *electronic glitch music*? Fascinating stuff--there are people who make music using sounds from hardware & software malfunctions, such as cds skipping. glitch music tends to have a choppy, lurching character.

Okay. I actually didn't know that stuff about glitch music until this week when Tim kindly was teaching me. I like hanging out with people who are so smart that, at cocktail parties (e.g. blog posts), I can use their teachings to make me sound like I'm smarter than I am. Anyway, in NOOLOGY, Tim is reaching for a similar sensibility in visual poetry and I think you all should check out his work (an antidote to some of the (to quote a highly-effective poemwrd by Tom Beckett) "oinkonomics" going on in blogland of late).

Okay, men. You go!

And the Chatelaine reaches for her goblet of 2005 Aubert chardonnay from the lovely Sonoma Valley...



Speaking of contests, Kristin Naca is one of the new recipients of the National Poetry Series Contest. Yay! And it's not just the book prize but their inaugural MTV Prize....coming to a college campus near you!

I don't usually pay attention to poetry contests except when it amuses Moi....or when a Filipino poet is involved. And dang if moi purty head don't keep being yanked that way. To wit, So, like, haven't you all noticed how more and more of these contests are being won by Filipino poets?

                  Ay nagsamit, nagsamit!

I've been following Kristin's work for years now, btw, but apparently, many of you don't know her. Well, here's a sample poem she sent just for posting on this blog where, in searching for poetry, you also get the news! And dang if I ain't hungry now for some major lechon!:

By Kristin Naca

The taller men with baseball bats, a tree branch garbled with knots,
log iron, and leftover pipe from the fence they put up last summer.
The shorter men gripping buck knives for slashing at the pig's neck.
And ripened on a dry slop of peanuts, cornflakes and newspaper
shavings, moiled between the washer and dryer and shelves of dust-caked
soda bottles, the pig that grew tall enough to sniff and lick the doorknob.
So, from the other side, I watched it turn and, hearing it flicker at night,
dreamt of succoring the pig’s escape. Then, they unleashed it. It
drumming its blunt, fleshy hammers through the downstairs hallway,
its high-pitched cough the air it dragged over vocal chord lathing.
Then they prodded it across the yard and cornered it under the porch.
So with a ka-thunk the pig, then stilled in its tracks, had to watch
as one of the men crept up and dragged his knife across its neck.
They held the sullen body in their pink, craggy hands, standing up,
in order to catch its blood in a bucket. Blood Mother cooked
into a musty, black blood-food we smothered our rice in. After that,
the men heaved the body on a picnic table wrapped in Glad bags
and tape and rolled the carcass on its back and split the skin down
the long belly, its guts oozing out—all beigy, peachy and blue like
clouds of chewed bubble-gum or the bulbs of a wilted, worn-in coin purse.
Collapsed hoses, too soft and slick to pile up, spread across the lawn
in pearly pools. Then, carefully, the men excised the gall bladder
before it broke and spoiled the meat, gallbladder curled like a finger
on a folding chair beside them while they emptied the carcass to the snout.
On the grass, the heart and lungs lay, and the throat ridged and perfect
as a staircase. And then, the new backbone a metal rod they pierced
and guided through the carcass. Tackle they hoisted onto some posts,
so—though I can't remember exactly—they could turn the whole thing
on a spit. How it hovered for hours over the orange coals that startled
whenever the juices dripped, and the rangy smell of singed pork-meat
and charcoal slinked into our sweat, and the pork skin transluted, cells
shimmering amber and snapping easily to the touch, hot loosened fat
down our fingers, until the meat fell apart without having to hack at it.
The men, smoking packs of Kool cigarettes and piling up the empty
Schlitz beer cans, hardly mentioning a thing about the child.

[Appeared in HARPUR PALATE, Fall 2007.]


Wednesday, August 27, 2008


let me introduce moi dawgs Achilles and Gabriela:

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Since you've been led to this blog due to Cider Press brouhaha (which, just so you know, is the kind of stuff that make many long-time readers of this blog yawn), I thereby do you a favor and lead you


where it's easy for these poets to be treated with much love and respect because they are so writing some fabulous fabulous poetry.

If you hadn't known of HERE before, well, Live and Learn.

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I'm really heartened to hear that, in a mere two weeks, BlazeVOX Books raised $7,500 which will help resolve the unexpected printer cost snag. Now, think about the implications of a poetry press being able to raise that amount in such a short it Geoffrey Gatza's cooking skills or, maybe, BlazeVOX just publishes damn good books (scroll down for full catalog)!

I'm sure both factors went into consideration -- who wouldn't want a seven-course meal by this poet-publisher-chef-to-the-stars? On the other hand, you should check out the still-available raffle or donation special for goodies from the press' catalogue -- a bargain for many fabuloso books! Like, ahem: MINE!


Bino, btw, says he loves the cover to THE BLIND CHATELAINE'S KEYS -- he says, it reminds him of dungeons in castles. Hm. The Chatelaine looks up from her keyboard, looks about her, giggles...then proceeds to type, Well, some things are not to blog about, you know....and her hand leaves the keyboard to move to her waist where the chatelaine lies (pun intended) in wait...

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Tuesday, August 26, 2008


So I'm purrrrr-ed to share the cover image of my forthcoming poetry collection NOTA BENE EISWEIN:

It's one of my collages, this entitled “Global Warming”, and it was inspired by the heat of flamenco, images of the Barne Glacier, and asemic writing practices to which I was introduced by Tim Gaze. The asemic portion of the collage utilizes a symbol for “Filipino poet” as created through my 2002 “Poems Form/From The Six Directions” project. Also relevant to this collage as well as the underlying sensibility to the book's poems is an observation by Christian Dotremont:
“The printed sentence is like a city map: the bushes, trees, objects, and myself have disappeared.”


Relatedly, my soul is "a juicy, seedless watermelon bursting with delicious." Beneath the wit and hilarity, Reb Livingston has been posting in the last couple of days some important points that many poets love to ignore. I am as appalled as anyone over the horsepatooty that Stacey Lynn Brown got from one of these book contests,... yet that's just another reason for more poets to remember they're supposed to be creative folks; so why not get a more DIY sensibility to the work?!

Let's understand what the distinct majority of poetry contests are about -- they are an infrastructure-compromise resulting from the lousy economics of poetry publishing. Many poetry presses run these contests to fundraise. Fullstop.

Fundraising is not necessarily a problem. The problem is how certain aspects of the poetry world give more aesthetic credibility to poetry contest winners. Only a world so steeped in "cultural capital" and so paradoxically deliberate about ignoring self-awareness (which I'd have thought would be an asset for good poeticizing, btw) in order to boost said capital (e.g. Hey, I'm such a poet big shot that I'm a judge in this poetry contest! or, Hey my book is a contest winner!) would create this illogic as regards poetry. Let me tell you something -- I read a heck of a lot of contemporary books. There is no correlation between "better" poetry and "contest winner." Nada. (Matter of fact, of my top ten poetry reads over the past year, I think only one was a contest winner.)

So get over it, you creative poets, and start creating alternatives to the contest system! Fortunately, it's the 21st century and technology can support your creativity if you go there! Which, of course, leads me to one example: the publisher of THE BLIND CHATELAINE'S KEYS, BlazeVOX. If you scroll through their site, you can see how Geoffrey Gatza pulled together an impressive outfit based on understanding technology, and his vision of the political and cultural environment. He took the high road approach to this high art of ours. I don't go around chastising presses for sponsoring contests (one of my key publishers does so, but do check out this information from said savvy publisher made up of savvy poets who understand that poets need to be respected and fundraising shouldn't change that!). A poetry contest is an economics-based compromise, people, not something offering a version of the aesthetic Holy Grail.


THE BLIND CHATELAINE'S KEYS should be available soon (and for its participants, I'll be emailing you later this week about your own copy). UPDATE: Book is now available from BlazeVOX web site viz Paypal; Amazon and SPD to follow.


I lovingly dedicate this post to all the indie poetry presses who've supported my work: Marsh Hawk Press, Moria, xPress(ed), Blue Lion Books, Otoliths, Blaze[VOX], Ahadada, Dusie....I am very grateful to you all, particularly because as one critic once said about me, I tend to release books as if they're going out of fashion.... I don't just mention these presses because they published me. I mention them as examples of poet-publishers who have taken publishing in their own hands, and as a result have released many books which are usually more interesting, challenging, fascinating, pleasingly-unpredictable and way more satisfying than many books I've read coming out from the contest system. So check out these presses -- see what kind of lessons they as models offer.

Then, Poets, take your contest fee budget -- part of a seven-figure economy, mind you -- and get creative! (Have I mentioned I'm a former economist, btw?) So there!, she concludes with much Love.

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Monday, August 25, 2008


What's poetry for but for also continuously reinventing one's self? So here's a sample poem from my forthcoming book NOTA BENE EISWEIN where I think the poems are different from how I'd written elsewhere:


left with a stare
watching itself
                  a poem in a forest
                  covered deeply by ancient moss

its legacy a stone toe
                  red paint long faded
                  (though it lingers as memory)

somewhere, a woman
shrouds herself in white linen
                  a poem invisible but transparent

This was written after one of Christian Hawkey's poems and first published in The Enigmatist. NOTA BENE EISWEIN is rare for me in's actually just a collection of poems, fullstop. No (intentional) disrupting of genres going on....just a collection of poems. It's good for me, once in a while, to just do that, too, just to nota bene that I also understand poetics priorities ... and I do enjoy those spaces where everything is clear...

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Thursday, August 21, 2008


I'm newly on the Board of Kundiman, along with some pretty fabulous poets (scroll down).

I've also served for a long while now on the Boards of Kelsey Street Press (which has a fabulous blog HERE) and Small Press Traffic (who's looking for a new Executive Director).

I choose to be affiliated with these organizations because they deserve support. Do check out their offerings, their books and readings -- they elevate contemporary poetry.

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Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Well, wow. Yesterday, this blog received more hits in one day than it usually gets in a week. I guess the issue of poetry-buying ... rankles.

But in celebration of my Sillimanian-stats, I do need to point you to Ron Silliman's Historic Achievement. And do follow up by buying the book that attests to the Life in Poetry: THE ALPHABET.

Congratulations, Ron! (And what a delight to see poets put out thick books-grin). This also reminded me to finally buy his The Age of Huts (compleat)...and I did!

Meanwhile, since book-buying interests many, here is a follow-up survey that John Bloomberg-Rissman would like to conduct. John notes, "An interesting followup to this survey would be to know how many OTHER non-poetry books these same folks bought over the same 12 months, and what. That way it wd be possible to determine how much of one’s book fund goes to poetry, how much elsewhere …"

So if you would like to participate by noting your non-poetry book purchases in the past twelve months, please send your information to John at

I'll cheerfully start. My non-poetry book purchases encompass the following areas:

fiction (novels)
memoirs / biographies / autobiographies
art history/studies
art monographs
socio-cultural-political studies
leather-bound versions of classics and other good-reads

I also have stray and very minor purchases in philosophy and cookbooks...

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Monday, August 18, 2008


I thank all the respondents to my "Simple Poetry Buying Survey"--the raw data is featured in the prior blog post below. Sixty-four folks replied to my three-question survey; while the number of participants actually exceeded my expectations, 64 is of course hardly a “representative” sample of the, uh, "poetry market". Such naturally doesn’t prevent Moi from blathering off some analysis even as I caveat that my conclusions are anecdotal. My conclusions are also colored by my own experiences as a poet and publisher, while the survey results no doubt are also influenced by the POVs of the particular “communities” reached by my survey.

Anyway, I write this after noticing this week that my local public library continues to deaccession poetry-related titles (a journal by May Sarton and a biography of Andrew Motion; as for poetry titles, they don’t even bother putting those on the shelves but do offer them for sale for a quarter or so during intermittent book-sale fundraisers). This past week, poetry publisher BlazeVOX Books also announced a “Bake Sale” to help offset costs caused partly by how the publisher’s expectations of selling poetry books on Amazon has failed to materialize. All of which is to say, the survey results don’t reveal anything new in terms of the difficulty of poetry sales. But the results do reveal certain elements that may explain why even some poetry lovers don’t buy that many poetry publications.

Not surprisingly, survey participants are mostly poets who do buy poetry books. While it would have been interesting to hear why poets don’t buy poetry -- if only to mirror the fiction writer who said he doesn’t buy poetry because he’s not moved by much that he reads in journals -- it’s nonetheless interesting to see how various customers make their choices.

Let Moi first implicate moiself. I thought of this Survey because I discovered that I, an avowed Poetry Lover, don't really BUY that many poetry publications. Shocking. In recent years, I've been buying 500-1,000 books a year and yet my poetry-related purchases over the past ten months (as far back as my record-keeping goes) show me buying a mere 42 publications—which I’ll just increase by 50% to 63 publications as I know my record doesn’t capture every book bought. Still, that only raises the total to 63 publications! If I love Poetry so much and yet don't buy "much" (and I realize the definition of "much" is subjective but let me just say that I find I don't pass my definition of that threshold), what does this imply?

In delving deeper into how I came to purchase certain of my poetry publications, I discovered that I purchased only four of the 63 publications based on the work (specifically, based on sampling their pages at bookstores, then liking them enough to buy the books). As with other survey respondents, it seems that when it’s impossible to buy every poetry publication one wishes to buy, circumstance and factors extraneous to the work then became motivations for driving purchases: for me, such factors include what’s on sale to wishing to support a particular small press to focusing on works that relate to something I’m also investigating to desiring to support Filipino literature. Some of my reasons are echoed by several of the survey respondents.

Although textbook sales was acknowledged by just one (two?) respondent, neither did I see anything in the survey results to negate what I believe based on my experience as a poetry publisher and poet: the primary source of volume sales in poetry are textbook sales. This has implications, but I’ll leave that to others to explore.

Another major source of sales -- as validated by the thoughts of another poet-publisher, Mark Young who puts out Otolith Books -- are readings, so that poets who participate in such activities are more likely to generate higher sales. This practice, too, has certain implications. For example, as a publisher, I tend to use POD for poets I publish but who are unable to participate in many gigs. Still, “volume” continues to be relative, with several poets having told me in the past that if they sell more than two books at a reading, they consider such a success.

Another observation: as regards poetry lovers who read a lot of poetry but don't BUY much, this can relate ironically to how many of these poetry lovers end up editing and publishing journals and writing reviews; as a result of such roles, they receive a lot of comps (as someone who also edits and crits, poetry purchases represent a minority of what I read; in fact, when I took a look at Tom Beckett’s list of purchased books, I realized that I read, without buying, most of those titles just by reading through the review copies sent to Galatea Resurrects).

Here are other conclusions or observations bolstered by the survey results (as I interpret them):

--The internet has a significant effect on many levels, including but not limited to: (i) people getting their poetry-reading fixes online rather than through (purchased) print alternatives; and (ii) e-buzz, including blog buzz, are a factor in influencing purchases, even among readers who don’t normally pay attention to reviews….word-of-mouth seems the most effective “review”…

--in a world where more and more poetry books are published (partly due to print technological advancements), some purchase trends seem to be (i) a focus on SELECTEDS and/or COLLECTEDS (I would include myself in this), and (ii) buying in areas where one has always meant to pay more attention (e.g. the “classics” ) versus the art of one’s peers (though, if one has peers in the poetry world, comps and trades play a big role anyway)

--advertisements do not play a major role in influencing purchases, except for sharing information of a new release to a poet’s already-existing fan base

--A respondent amused me by flat-out admitting she bought one poetry book because it was by a friend who blurbed her book. But then again, poets, how many of you truly support the books of those who have blurbed you? Relatedly, how many poets support their own publishers by buying the books they release?

--reduction of poetry on bookstore shelves -- or reduction of bookstores, period -- reduces buying

--a dedication to small presses, or certain small presses, influence purchases

--now that the link between poetry-reading and poetry-buying has been further weakened by the internet, several poets are choosing to live as minimally as they write – i.e., some mentioned no longer buying books because they wish to live more lightly…(reminds me of a poet I know who placed all her belongings in a storage facility and now reads books mostly by going to a library)

--as regards Poetry’s “gift-economy”, one could devote a whole study on this aspect. By backchannel, I’ve received stories of how important poets’ generosities can be to young poets, especially young, broke poets. Here’s one story:
“I remember when I was 17 years old and living in a tiny town in Oklahoma having first moved away from home. I got the New Yorker because my mother had bought me a subscription to it, knowing how much I liked poetry. I wrote a "fan" letter to XXX through the New Yorker telling her how much I admired her writing and loved her poetry. I told her about how I wanted to be a poet. I didn't expect a response from her because I figured she got fan letters all the time. *chuckle at my naivety* Two weeks later, a box arrived in the mail, and I saw it was from her. She had sent me a signed copy of her latest book of poetry and a wonderful letter written by hand saying she hoped I kept writing and generally encouraging a 17-year-old girl who wanted to be a poet. I was SO thrilled! I put the letter in a frame and hung it on the wall. // Those kinds of things mean so much to people... If XXX had sent a form letter back saying, "Thank you for your interest, kid. Go ask your local library to buy my book," who knows? Maybe I would have been disgusted and thought poets were assholes, and gone on to pursue a career selling shoes. I have a hard time understanding people that don't get this.”

But there’s also this from poet-publisher Mark Young: “There are a lot of people out there who expect to be given a copy of a book because they have a nodding acquaintance with the author & who, put out by not being considered worthy of gift, won't actually support the poet by buying a book.” And here’s my take -- I will give a free copy of my poetry books to anyone who asks me for one; in my experience, that’s a low-risk proposition; even freebies don't interest that many people when it comes to poetry books.

I’m pressed for time so I’ll leave the anecdotes at the above -- more can be gleaned by going direct to the survey’s RAW DATA responses. I will say that in a world where the gift economy plays a huge role, buying needs to be proactive. My favorite example is, of course, that Poetry Angel who tithes 10% of her income to purchasing poetry publications. On this note, I hereby announce that moving forward, I shall “give back” to all the free reads I’ve gotten through Galatea Resurrects (GR) by incorporating a new purchase-structure. That is, in the past, I’ve compensated GR’s reviewers by offering books from my library or from titles I publish through Meritage Press. Moving forward, I’ll also choose a different poetry press per issue whose books I shall purchase if a GR reviewer expresses interest in them.

As for the rest of you, you know what to do.



[I believe I made "Anonymous" all the respondents who asked for anonymity. If I erred, email me at and I'll swiftly correct.]

(Three questions; each response listed in same order per question)

Survey conducted by Eileen Tabios; background info to survey and her own replies HERE, HERE, and HERE.

1) Have you bought a poetry publication in the last 12 months?
Ernesto Priego: Yes.
Barbara Jane Reyes: (8/7/08 reply) yes, last weekend.
Miguel Syjuco: I'd like to help out by answering. My answers are shameful, and therefore I hope they are helpful. // No, actually. I haven't [bought any poetry books in the last 12 months]. I'm so ashamed to admit! It's been years.
Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor: Yes
ANONYMOUS #1: Ten per cent of my income goes to pay for poetry publications. [Please keep name to yourself, Eileen, I don't want to become a sitting duck for poets trying to push stuff down my throat because of my tithing process.]
Becca: Yes! Lots!
John Bloomberg-Rissman: Yes
Crag Hill: I must buy 25-30 books a year (get another dozen or so sent to me). I buy more books in the summer and consequently read more in the summer. Can't remember all the titles, but in the last few weeks I bought the following (see next question):
Bino A. Realuyo: i know i did.
K. Silem Mohammad: Yes, I've bought a fair number of poetry books and chapbooks in the last year.
Logan Ryan Smith: Yes.
Chris Stroffolino: Probably not. I'm hoping this changes
ANONYMOUS #2: Yes, I buy poetry frequently. I'm about to use a $4000 grant I have to, for the most part, buy a bunch of poetry.
Michael Wells: Yes
Jordan Stempleman: Yes
ANONYMOUS #6: I have bought bundles of books of poetry – more than I can count. YES!
Bruce Covey: YES
Claudia Carlson: Yes
Steffen Brown: Yes
Jesse Glass: Yes, all of the time.
Andrea Baker: Yes.
ANONYMOUS #9: I'm given many books of poetry (20? 40? 60?) each year because I do criticism, esp. reviews. However, I did buy a few books of poetry this year.
Mark Young: Yes
ANONYMOUS #10: yes
J.P. “Jude” Dizon: yes
Joel: Yes
Catherine Wagner: Yes, lots
ANONYMOUS #12: yes, altho lack of funds prevent me from being a better patron of poetics -- which is one reason why online poetics has been crucial to my reading development, continuing to great effect the "free store" of the "trade economy" that has traditionally been associated with the radical branches of poetics. People trading their work (books) with one another is beautiful, almost an ideal utopia, where the transaction is one of energy as opposed to cold hard cash -- however, the sad fact is that perhaps a lack of financial support has held back an even greater amount of innovation & progression, by which i mean a certain freedom for the poet/artisit to finalize their work in solid form with no regard to operating costs. i am a rabid bibliophile & still hold books to be one of the greatest technologies humanity has produced.
Richard Lopez: it seems odd to me that anyone who professes to be a poet would not buy a poetry book. eileen, i'm running outta room at me abode! i don't keep receipts but i'm always stopping in at the local indie and commercial book stores on the way home from work and on the weekends. they are one of life's deep pleasures, browsing the stacks, picking up a tome and smelling the paper, ink and binding. as much as i love the ether, i can't do without being in physical contact with books.
Guillermo Parra: Yes
Dan Waber: Yes. I don't even know how many in the last 12 months. Easily over a hundred.
Tom Beckett: I estimate that I've bought in the neighborhood of 100 poetry publications--and that's just poetry-- in the last twelve months. When you factor in lit crit, art related publications, biographies and philosophy books, the total will go over 200. This is not unusual for me. Much to my spouse's dismay. Books, journals, chapbooks, CDs, DVDs and, etc, are flying in and out of our household all the time. // I also trade my own publications for those of others, receive comp and review copies of books, and even beg copies from time-to-time. I can't afford to purchase every publication I would like to have or to support, but I do what I can.
V. Ponka: Yes
Eric Gamalinda: Yes
Lars Palm: Yes
Lee Herrick: Yes
Geof Huth ( [PREFACE:] Eileen Tabios is distributing a tiny little survey on the subject of purchasing poetry, so I thought I’d respond. As a crazed book collector, I buy many books of poetry but I also acquire poetry books as gifts or review copies all the time. The list below is light on the small press titles that I acquire through trade or as gifts, though the list still is a bit eclectic. Looking over this list, I note that the three presses I’m most likely to buy from are Otoliths, Redfoxpress, and the University of California Press. [ANSWER:] Certainly. I buy far too many books each year, certainly over 100, and many of them poetry
Burt Kimmelman: Yes
Marcella Durand: Yes
Anthony Robinson: Yes, a lot
Anny Ballardini: Thanks to Tom Beckett on Slim Windows who reminded me of Eileen Tabios’ mail some time ago. As I said on his blog, I starred her mail to go back to it later and then forgot about it. I will therefore take Tom’s example and answer on my blog. // Tom talks of about 100 poetry publications. I don’t think I am close to that number, but I did buy a lot. I just ordered 100 dollars in books, plus forty for the shipping. It is money, and it goes away, and then I have little time to read books because I am always here on the net reading, when I have time. I will have to reason things out with myself a little.
Jonathan Cohen: I have bought poetry in the past twelve months.
Remy: yes
Tess Crescini: Yes
Rhodora: Yes, in the last 6 months, about four or five.
ANONYMOUS #14: I have e bought, lessee, 3 poetry publications in the last 12 months. Not proud of this.
Rebecca Loudon: Yes.
Ross: Yes
Vangie Buell: Yes
firstcitybook: See #2
Kelli Agodon: Yes
Aileen Ibardaloza: Yes
Reb Livingston: Um, duh, yes.
Ed Baker: See #2
Carter Monroe: I've literally purchased too many too remember or even count.

2) If so, which one(s). If not, why not?
Ernesto Priego: Just some journals. The Poetry Review and The Wolf. I'm broke too and I'm trying not to get any more physical books. I'm trying to live and move lightly. PS. I should say that nowadays most of my reading material I get on line, or in the library.
Barbara Jane Reyes: a used copy of ginsberg's kaddish (city lights pocket poetry series) at moe's in berkeley
Miguel Syjuco: I rarely buy books, and when I do they are fiction and non-fiction. But I'm always pleased when I do turn to poetry that I find myself saying, "Gosh, why don't I read poetry more?" I think it's been years since I bought a poetry book. Maybe because I'm still not finished reading my massive Norton Anthology of Poetry. Actually, no, I just remembered, I bought a collected works of William Butler Yeats about a year ago, but that was because it was 75% off. The short answer, I think, is that I am poor, and since I am a fiction writer I buy fiction books as a professional expense.
Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor: I've bought two books, The Business of Fancy Dancing (Sherman Alexie) and an anthology with poetry for young adults, I Feel A Little Jumpy Around You by Naomi Shihab Nye and Paul B. Janeczko.
ANONYMOUS #1: There are too many to list, but most recently, I bought POEM, REVISED by Laura Cherry.
Becca: Too many to remember off the top of my head, but books by Hoa Nguyen, Brenda Shaughnessy, Danielle Pafunda, Jennifer L. Knox, Bernadette Mayer, Bill Luoma, Graham Foust, Jasper Bernes within the last few months. I usually buy from SPD, Amazon, or make a couple treks a year from Chicago up to Woodland Pattern. Helping to run a small press has encouraged me to buy more books directly from publishers, too.
John Bloomberg-Rissman: At least 50 titles. I can’t easily tell you which because I don’t shelve by date. I don’t even make piles on the floor by date. [Bought most of the Meritage Press titles and then from this weekend...:]:
Clark Coolidge – At Egypt
Tyler Doherty – Bodhidharma Never Came to Hatboro
Brandon Downing – Dark Brandon
Norman Fischer – Success
Edmond Jabes – The Book of Margins (also borderline – purportedly essays but read just like his poems)
Frank Lima – Inventory
Laura Moriarty – Ultravioleta (probably actually a novel, more or less …)
Friederike Mayrocker – Raving Language
Friederike Mayrocker – Brutt, or the Sighing Gardens (one of the borderlines – called a novel but reads a hell of a lot like her poems)
Mckenzie Wark – Dispositions (another borderline – called a novel on the back cover but if this is a novel then all walls are down … which they are of course …)

Also just bought from BlazeVOX's Bake Sale--gave a donation that will get me ten books including by kari edwards, Geoffrey Gatza and Alan Sondheim.
Crag Hill:
Given, Wendell Berry (new)
The Ends of the Earth, David Bromige (used)
Situation Sings, Jack Collom & Lyn Hejinian (new)
The Human Abstract, Elizabeth Willis (used)
The Dream of a Common Language, Adrienne Rich (used)
Slinger, Ed Dorn (used)
nothing doing, Cid Corman (new)
Lit Interim, Christopher Arigo (new)
In the archives, Christopher Arigo (new)
this connection of everyone with lungs, Juliana Spahr (new)
Recyclopedia, Harryette Mullen (new)
The Outernationale, Peter Gizzi (new)
Night Scenes, Lisa Jarnot (new)
The Fatalist, Lyn Hejinian (new)
Time and Materials, Robert Hass (new)

Bino A. Realuyo: but since all my books are in boxes in jersey, i cant think of which ones.
K. Silem Mohammad: In the last few weeks, I've bought Ted Greenwald's 3, Dodie Bellamy's Barf Manifesto, a chapbook by Mike Young, Jackson Mac Low's Thing of Beauty, Sianne Ngai's Ugly Feelings (cultural theory essays by a poet), James Schevill's bio of Bern Porter, Jack Collom's Red Car Goes By ... these are just off the top of my head.
Logan Ryan Smith: Hard to recall all of them, but here's a try:
David Larsen, THE THORN
Kate Greenstreet, THIS IS WHY I HURT YOU
Michael Palmer, SUN
Michael Slosek, Z FORMATION
Garret Caples, Complications
Landis Everson, When You Have a Rabbit
Frank Sherlock, Daybook of Perversities & Main Events

That's all I can remember. I'm sure there are others. But, now that I look at that list I realize just how much I receive thru trade versus how much I actually buy.
Chris Stroffolino: A crippling (expensive) injury. No money, no space to store books. Not making enough money off my art to support other people's these days.
ANONYMOUS #2: The most recent books I got were by Lucy Brock Broido, Ann Carson, and Mary Jo Salter. That's not typical of my buying habits--I usually buy more small press stuff.
Michael Wells: I've bought Poetry Magazine, Court Green, Glimmer Train, Michigan Quarterly Review, and New Letters. I subscribe to Poets & Writers. On books:
Migration - W.S. Merwin
Later - Cecilia Woloch
What is This Thing Called Love - Kim
Small Knots - Kelli Russell Agodon
Honey and Junk - Dana Goodyear
Where Shall I Wonder - John Ashbery
The Poet's Notebook: Excerpts from the Notebooks of Contemporary American Poets (Paperback) - David Weiss
Poemcrazy: Freeing Your Life with Words (Paperback
The Poet's Companion: A Guide to the Pleasures of Writing Poetry (Paperback) - Kim Addonizio

Want, Rick Barot (Sarabande Books)
Hallelujah Blackout, Alex Lemon (Milkweed Editions)
Donner, A Passing, Shana Youngdahl (Finishing Line Press)
Profane Halo, Gillian Conoley

Jordan Stempleman: When I lived in a town that had an excellent selection of both journals and books, I bought directly from the bookstore. Now that I don't have that option I tend to buy all my journals, chapbooks, and collections online. I have bought books from SPD, Lulu, small bookstores which sell used books on Amazon, etc.
ANONYMOUS #4: Gertrude Stein, Last Operas and Plays; Ron Silliman ed, In the American Tree; Grinnel et al eds., Aufgabe 7; Tan Lin, Ambiance Is a Novel with a Logo; Alan Davies, Book 6; Jules Boykoff and Kaia Sand, Guerrilla Poetry & Public Space; Kristin Prevallet ed., A Helen Adam Reader; Tom Hibbard, Critique of North American Space; Gail Scott ed., The Collected Poems of Marsden Hartley; Jackson Mac Low, Thing of Beauty; Tom Raworth, Complete Poems; and at least as many others.
ANONYMOUS #5: I bought a book by Will Alexander and one by Douglas Messerli at Skylight Books. I bought a load of books at AWP. I bought some books to replace books damaged, lost, or given away. I bought copies of my books.
ANONYMOUS #6: I am unable to list them all, but I have purchased individual collections (multiple), anthologies, and texts relating to particular poets (letters, etc.)
Bruce Covey: probably close to--or over--100 journals, chapbooks, books, etc., online & in bookstores
Claudia Carlson: Well yes, I am here at the Frost Place Seminar, in Franconia, New Hampshire, and so far I have bought Jim Schley's new book of poetry As When in Season. I plan on buying one of Andrea Hollander Budy's books as well and will pick one after I hear her reading tonight. Whichever poem blows my socks off, I'll get that book. [The Woman in the Painting] // And I plan on ordering David Trinidad's Plasticville which has a poem with troll dolls in it that he read in Robert Frost's barn and I LOVED, and he dedicated the reading to me because I too have placed trolls in a poem. // I think I will get a subscription to A Public Space, it really keeps catching my attention. I had heard about it starting when the editor left the Paris
ANONYMOUS #7: I can't list them all. Most recent ones were from Ugly Ducking Presse, but I have some Tinfish books coming.
ANONYMOUS #8: New Jon Godfrey (Wave Books); Jason Appleman's "Make Loneliness" (Seismicity Editions); several chapbooks from Catfish Press and Effing Press; "Not for Mother's Only" anthology; "Lyric Postmoderisms" anthology.
Steffen Brown:
gone, fanny howe
the language of inquiry, lyn hejinian
my life, lyn hejinian
field-russian, gennady aygi
everything from ugly duckling press released this year
everything from ahsahta press released this year
prairie style, c.s. giscombe (pre order)
my vocabulary did this to me: the collected poetry of jack spicer (pre order)
saga-circus, lyn hejinian
selected poems of friedrich holderlin, trans. maxine chernoff and paul hoover
the california poem, eleni sikelianos
lyric postmodernisms, reginald shepherd
the house that jack built, ed. peter gizzi
in the pines, alice notley
the importance of peeling potatoes ukraine, mark yakich
the fatalist, lyn hejinian
infamous landscapes, prageeta sharma
a magic book, sasha steensen
make loneliness, j. reuben appleman
isa the truck named isadore, amanda nadelberg
new jersey, betsy andrews
god bless, h.l. hix
your ten favorite words, reb livingston
the attention lesson, pf potvin
the color of dusk, robin caton
the cry at zero, andrew joron
fathom, andrew joron

Jesse Glass: Penguin book of Hebrew Verse; American Poetry Since 1950 (Weinberger); Poetics of the Pretext Reading Lautreamont
Andrea Baker: William Blake: The Complete Illuminated Books. Selected Poems of Rene Char. Both of these are from talking to Matthew Henriksen. // At AWP I purchased Grossman’s Descartes Loneliness (I like Grossman who Matt also turned me onto), Awe by Dorothea Lasky (hard to know what the origin of the buzz about that book was: readings/seeing poems/her “tour”....), and a New Directions book of spiritually oriented writing (because it’s an interest of mine)... I don’t remember what else. // Bookstore purchases are generally contemporary poets whose work I’ve seen in journals but I’m not sure exactly what I’ve bought.... Certainly much less than normal as I’m getting a philosophy/religious studies degree and most of my reading has been in that direction. (And I’ve been obsessed with Rilke so never feel I really need a new book to satisfy me.) // Oh, and I know I ordered Max Winter’s book from Tarpaulin Sky Press book after hearing him read.
ANONYMOUS #9: I'm given many books of poetry (20? 40? 60?) each year because I do criticism, esp. reviews. However, I did buy a few books of poetry this year. In BORDERS, I purchased a new SELECTED POEMS of Federico Garcia Lorca, and at a reading I gave with one of the editors of LANGUAGE FOR A NEW CENTURY, I bought that. (You're in it.) And I could swear I bought a third book, but I can't remember which one or where I got it. (In 2007 I remember buying Silliman's UNDER ALBANY.)
Mark Young:
Eileen Tabios has just posted a three-question survey enquiring about the patterns & motives of people for buying — or not buying — books of poetry. The questions can be found here, Eileen's own answers & reasons behind the survey can be found at the link embedded in her statement above.

As a publisher who is quite amazed at the lack of a genuine poetry book-buying public out there, I'll be very interested in what she turns up. & yet, knowing some of my own reasons for why I buy or don't buy, I really shouldn't be amazed.

I do read a lot of poetry, partially because, as an editor, an awful lot of poetry — & a lot of awful poetry — traverses my monitor; I read a lot of stuff on blogs & e-zines; I tend to get a number of books sent to me; many of the books I would be tempted to buy are actually the books I publish. I also live in a geographically isolated place — only one bookstore which doesn't stock poetry unless it's "famous Australian" (& my thoughts on that category can be ascertained by a post not too far below this one); a substantive postal impost on anything bought on line — which tends to make for buying books on my, increasingly less frequent, trips to something that approximates a big city, the leave-home-with-an-empty-suitcase / come-back-with-an-overweight-one method. All of which means that I don't really buy much poetry, instead tend towards detective fiction with, if I'm buying on line, maybe a book, generally a selected/collected, of poetry added to my purchase.

a.) The books that I sell most of are those from poets who are young & energetic & who have the ability to self-promote, & those sell mainly at readings.

b.) There are a lot of people out there who expect to be given a copy of a book because they have a nodding acquaintance with the author & who, put out by not being considered worthy of gift, won't actually support the poet by buying a book.

c.) There are a number of sneaky people out there who write asking for copies so they can review the book, but never do. (& I'm willing to bet that if you asked a number of small press publishers who made such requests of them, the same names would continue to appear.)

d.) As Ron Silliman continues to remind us, there are an enormous number of books of poetry being published.

For the record, these are the books of poetry I've bought in the past year.
The Gary Snyder Reader
The Collected Poems of Ted Berrigan
David Shapiro: New & Selected Poems
Unfathoms by Kirsten Kaschock
Thing of Beauty by Jackson Mac Low
These are my Rivers by Lawrence Ferlinghetti
The Age of Huts (compleat) by Ron Silliman

ANONYMOUS #10: Surviving the Storm -oh it was JUST over 12 months ago. . .
ANONYMOUS #11: I have bought 3 second hand copies of Landfall (207, 208,209). I have bought new “Contemporary New Zealand Poets in Performance” edited by Jack Ross and Jan Kemp. I also swapped 3 jars of homemade chutney for 2 poetry books direct from the author (Peter Bradburn).
J.P. Dizon:
Moon over Magarao--Luis Cabalquinto
The Sorrows of Water--Neil Garcia
Jolography--Paolo Manalo
Decimal Points--Ricardo de Ungria
Renaissance--Ruth Forman
THe Other Side of the Night--Francisco Alarcon
Powerless--Tom Dlugos (might be wrong)
My American Kundiman--Patrick Rosal
Some book of poems by Jose Maria Sison from when he was in prison
A book on japanese tankas
an anthology of mahmoud darwish's work
danger/beauty--jessica hagedorn

Joel: Jane Hirschfield, Chase Twitchell, D. Nurkse
ANONYMOUS 11B: I subscribe to some mags. bought some books written by people I know. one or two from people I don't know. only remember some of the titles. most from very small presses.
Catherine Wagner: Oh lord. I have no idea, I prob buy 2-3 books or more a month, more if I happen to go to a big city/festival. Bad, bad; really fucks with my budget. Latest, from this summer and late spring, heavily skewed toward British stuff b/c I was teaching over there this summer:
Dana Ward's new chap
Allen Fisher, Place
Maggie O'Sullivan, Body of Work
Peter Manson, Between Cup and Lip
Tom Pickard, Ballad of Jamie Allen
Christine Hume, Lullaby
Jonty Tiplady chap
Frances Kruk, A Discourse on Vegetation and Motion
Jennifer Moxley, The Middle Room
Jennifer Moxley, The Line
Stephen Rodefer, Mon Canard
H.D., Trilogy
Oulipoems, Philip Terry
Implexures, Karen Mac Cormack
Kevin Nolan, Loving Little Orlick
William Fuller, Three Poems
Simon Jarvis, The Unconditional
Poemas, Cesar Vallejo, tr. William Rowe
Harriet Tarlo, Poems 1990-2003
Salt Companion to Geraldine Monk
Keston Sutherland, Hot White Andy
Alice Notley, Above the Leaders
Alice Notley, In the Pines
Jackson Mac Low, Selected
Susan Howe, Souls of the Labadie Tract
Jasper Bernes, Starsdown
Brandon Downing, Dark Brandon

A few mags -- Abraham Lincoln and Pilot and /NOR are mags I remember buying. // I subscribe to Reality Street Editions; I think I subscribe to Ugly Duckling but maybe my subscription has run out?
Geof Huth "Longfellow Memoranda"
Geof Huth "Out of Character"
Rachel Blau DuPlessis "Torques"
Steve McCaffery "seven pages missing vol. 2"
Yoko Ono "grapefruit"
Bill Kennedy and Darren Wershler-Henry "apostrophe"
Tom Phillips "a humument"
Spaltung #2 (Atlanta poets group)
Pissing Ice (an anthology of 'New' Canadian poets)
misc. chapbooks from Rust Belt books whilst visiting Buffalo NY
Ronald Gross & George Quasha "open poetry" anthology
bp nichol "martyrology book 5"
many more..

Richard Lopez: these are a few of the poetry books i've purcharsed these past few weeks or so.
8x8x7 by colin smith
red shifting by aleksandr skidan
the sense record and other poems by jennifer moxley
20 questions by dennis phillips
burning in water drowning in flame by charles bukowski
nine alexandrias by semezdin mehmedinovic
pieces by robert creeley
poem on a train by jordan davis
anxious moments by ales debeljak

and here is a short list of some of the poetry pubs i've picked up from a local magazine shop, the newsbeat, in the past month or so.
jubilat 14
black warrior review, fall - winter 2007
6x6 15 [got at pegasus bookstore in berkeley]
580 split 10

and these don't include the genre fiction as well as movie and art pubs, and dvds.
1. XXXXX, by XXXXX, Why? Two reasons: Poet’s work is wonderful, but mostly because … she is a poet in need. I was a single mother for 17 years and know how hard it is.
2. The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry. Why? Because I once owned a copy and it has terrific work in it.
3. The Best of American Poetry 2008. Why? I buy it every year. This year it had some poems from some of my favorite poets.
If not, why not?
I am not working because of health problems and can barely afford to eat, much less buy books. I eat PBJ sandwiches for dinner 4 nights a week. There are probably 100 books of poetry I would have bought this year, had I been able to buy them. I should not have bought the books I did buy, because I really couldn't afford to buy them. When I was working, I spent, on average $2,500 a year buying books, including books of poetry.
Guillermo Parra: The collected poems of Trinidad-born, Venezuelan poet Miguel James (1953): An anthology called "Mi novia Ítala come flores y otras novias" Mérida: Ediciones Mucuglifo/CENAL, 2007)
Dan Waber: I am traveling at the moment, so a comprehensive list is not going to be possible. But, I'm not sure you want a list of over a hundred
Tom Beckett: I don't have the time or energy to run down the whole list of titles I purchased. Here are the ones that come to mind immediately:
Book 6 by Alan Davies
Dark Brandon (the dvd) by Brandon Downing
Vertigo by Martha Ronk
Green and Gray by Geoffrey G. O'Brien
Rising, Falling, Hovering by C.D. Wright
Collected Poems by Philip Whalen
Thing of Beauty by Jackson Mac Low
sexoPUROsexoVELOZ by Dolores Dorantes
The Romance of Happy Workers by Anne Boyer
Collected Long Poems, Kenneth Koch
Flim-yoked Scrim by Diane Ward
Notes from the Air by John Ashbery
Situation, Sings by Hejinian and Collom
The Cow by Ariana Reines
Day Ocean State of Stars' Night by Leslie Scalapino
Way More West by Ed Dorn
Ripple Effect by Elaine Equi
Broken World by Joseph Lease
Capital of Pain by Paul Eluard
Complete Minimal Poems by Aram Saroyan
One Big Self by C. D. Wright
Inbox and a few other books (the titles of which escape me now) by Noah Eli Gordon
A Semblance by Laura Moriarity
The Lyrics by Fanny Howe
Recyclopedia by Harryette Mullen
The Odyssey by Homer
The Transformation by Juliana Spahr (plus her Meritage Press tiny book, the title of which escapes me now -[from THE TRADITION]).

I'm sorry I don't have the energy to list more right now. I know I'm leaving a lot of great things out. And then there are all the great things I've been gifted with or traded for. Ach.
V. Ponka:
The Complete Kenneth Rexroth
Pelican Dreaming: Collected Poems of Mark Young
My Vocabulary Did This To Me: Collected Poems of Jack Spicer (pre-order)
The Collected Long Poems of KennethKoch
The Collected Short Poems of Kenneth Koch
The Cantos by Ezra Pound
The Maximus Poems by Charles Olson
The Collected Poems of Charles Olson
Compleat Book of Huts by Ron Silliman
The Angel Hair Anthology, ed. by Anne Waldman

(I bet I am forgetting some….)
Lars Palm: a few. Maybe ten or so
Lee Herrick: Some of the many include: Juan Felipe Herrera's Half of the World in Light and 187 Reasons Mexicanos Can't Cross the Border, Cate Marvin's Fragment of the Head of a Queen, Matthew Shenoda's book, Rigoberto Gonzalez's Other Fugitives, Other Strangers, Oliver de la Paz's Furious Lullaby, Ivy Alvarez's Mortal, Gillian Wegener's The Opposite of Clairvoyance, two books by Eloise Klein Healy, Jon Pineda's Birthmark, Jennifer Kwon Dobbs' Paper Pavilion.
Geof Huth:
Armantrout, Rae. Next Life
Ashbery, John. The Mooring of Starting Out: The First Five Books of Poetry
Baroni, Vittore. Don’t You Rock Me Dada-O
Bennett, C. Mehrl and Collaborators. My Kimono Book (visual poems)
Berrigan, Ted. The Collected Poems of Ted Berrigan
Blaine, Julien. Poëmes des années 50 quelques ihali «équilibre» ballades (originellles [sic] & finallles [sic] 7 pas d’autres texts (visual poems)
Booth, Philip. Lifelines: Selected Poems
Corman, Cid. The Next One Thousand Years
Creeley, Robert. The Collected Poems of Robert Creeley, 1945-1975
Creeley, Robert. The Collected Poems of Robert Creeley, 1975-2005
Creeley, Robert. If I were writing this
Creeley, Robert. Thirty Things
Delvaux, Jean. Eloge d’Océana
Dunn, Stephen. The Insistence of Beauty
Everson, Landis. Everything Preserved: Poems, 1955-2005
Everson, Landis. When You Have a Rabbit
Gorrick, Anne. Kyotologic (Well, I traded for this one)
Hass, Robert. Time and Materials
H.D. Collected Poems, 1912-1944
Herbert, Zbigniew. The Collected Poems, 1956-1998
Huth, Geof. Longfellow Memoranda
Justice, Donald. Collected Poems
Kinnell, Galway. Mortal Acts, Mortal Words
Klane, Matthew and Adam Golaski. A Sing Economy
Klane, Matthew and Adam Golaski. Oh One Arrow
Kleinzahler, August. Sleeping it Off
Kunitz, Stanley. The Collected Poems
Lamantia, Philip. Meadowlark West
Laughlin, James. Poems New and Selected
Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth. Poems by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow: Complete in Two Volumes (1864)
Matsuo, Basho. Basho: The Complete Haiku
Matthews, William. Search Party: Collected Poems
Mitchell, Susan. Erotikon
Nakamura, Keiichi. Z
Nichol, bp. The Alphabet Game: a bpNichold reader
Olson, Charles. The Collected Poems of Charles Olson Excluding The Maximus Poems
Olson, Charles. The Maximus Poems
Otoliths Issue Nine, Part One, Southern Autumn, 2008
Otoliths Issue Nine, Part Two, Southern Autumn, 2008
Patchen, Kenneth. The Walking-Away World (visual poems)
Patchen, Kenneth. We Meet
Philips, Rodney. The Hand of the Poet: Poems and Papers in Manuscript
Pomerand, Gabriel. Saint Ghetto of the Loans (visual poems)
Rich, Adrienne. Midnight Salvage: Poems, 1995-1998
Rothenberg, Jerome and Pierre Joris. Poems for the Millenium, Volume One
Ryan, Abram J. (Father Ryan). Poems: Patriotic, Religious, Miscellaneous
Scalapino, Leslie. way
Selby, Spencer. Flush Contour
Silliman, Ron, ed. In the American Tree
Simic, Charles. That Little Something
Simic, Charles. Night Picnic
Stein, Gertrude. Stanzas in Meditation and Other Poems [1929-1933]
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight: A New Verse Translation by Simon Armitage
Valentine, Jean. Door in the Mountain: New and Collected Poems, 1965-2003
Vengua, Jean. Prau
Walcott, Derek. Collected Poems, 1948-1984
Weinberger, Eliot, ed. American Poetry Since 1950: Innovators & Outsiders: An Anthology
Whitman, Walt. Leaves of Grass (a nice big edition from 1931 to supersede my paperback)
Williams, Jonathan. An Ear in Bartram’s Tree
Wolfe, Thomas. A Stone, A Leaf, A Door: Poems by Thomas Wolfe, Selected and Arranged in Verse by John S. Barnes
Wood, Reid. Work Anonymously (visual poems)
Zukofsky, Louis. All: The Collected Short Poems, 1923-1958

These are not all the books I’ve bought in the past twelve months. I know that at least two are not on this list, though I can’t remember what they were and can’t find them to confirm.
Burt Kimmelman: I bought some chapbooks and full length books at readings and via mailings from Finishing Line Press. P.S. I am probably forgetting other poetry books I’ve purchased in the last year.
Marcella Durand:
On Spec, Tyrone Williams
Unexplained Presence, Tisa Bryant
Newcomer Can't Swim, Renee Gladman
The Cry at Zero: Selected Prose, Andrew Joron
Woods and Chalices, Tomaz Salamun
Think of One, P. Inman
Selected Poems 1965-2000, Merril Gilfillan
Autoportraits, Stacy Szymaszek
Some Mariners, Stacy Szymaszek
Incubation: a space for monsters, Bhanu Kapil Rider
Selected Letters, Emily Dickinson
Anthony Robinson: Too many to recall, but I remember these:
Kim Chinquee's Oh Baby (ravenna)
Afterpastures recently, the Caketrain contest winner
Amanda Nadelburg's Isa the Truck Named Isadore from Slope
Two books by Ashbery, The Tennis-Court Oath, and A Worldly Country.
Tao Lin's Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (Melville House)
Matt Cook's The Unreasonable Slug (Manic D Press)
Stacy Szymaszek's Emptied of All Ships (Litmus maybe?)
Ann Boyer's chap from Mitzvah Press.
Two issues of PHOEBE. One issue of KEYHOLE. One of NOON (which I guess isn't poetry). One REDIVIDER.

Anny Ballardini: I don’t really have a preference. Or if I do, I have so many preferences that I cannot keep up with them. I know I badly wanted to start reading some Tinfish books, and finally I took a course with Susan Schultz for extra credits and she used her books and recommended some more, so I ended up with a bunch of ten in a coup, and I enjoyed every one of them. That is maybe also why I started my MFA (by now ended), to be obliged to read books. I need books, how can I say it better? I need them as much as I need my food, maybe that gives an idea.
Jonathan Cohen: The books are:
My Life in the Nineties Hejinian, Lyn
My Life Hejinian, Lyn
Centuries, poems and thanksgivings. Traherne, Thomas
Complete short poetry Zukofsky, Louis
Just in time : poems, 1984-1994 Creeley, Robert
Track Finkelstein, Norman
Tjanting (Salt Modern Classics) Silliman, Ron
"A" Zukofsky, Louis
Algernon Charles Swinburne : major poems and selected prose
Swinburne, Algernon Charles
Torques: Drafts 58-76 (Salt Modern Poets) DuPlessis, Rachel Blau
Drafts (Salt Modern Poets) DuPlessis, Rachel Blau
The age of huts (compleat) Silliman, Ronald

Radio, Radio, Ben Doyle
Captivity, Toi Derricotte
Splay Anthem, Nathaniel Mackey
For the Confederate Dead, Kevin Young
Miracle Fruit, Aimee Nez.
Rules of the House, Tsering Wangmo Dhompa
Uproar, Brooks Haxton
Pictures from Brueghel and Other Poems, William Carlos Williams
After a Spell, Nance Van Winckel
100 Love Sonnets, Pablo Neruda, Tr. Gustavo Escobedo
Book of Luminous Things: An International Anthology, Czeslaw Milosz
Sea Change, Jorie Graham
God Particles, Thomas Lux
Burnt Island, D. Nurkse
Portable Kisses, Tess Gallagher
Poems and Prose, G.M. Hopkins
Sound and Form in Modern Poetry, Harvey Gross and Robert McDowell
Frost : Centennial Essays

Rhodora: [books by] Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Alicia Suskind Ostriker, Liesel Mueller, Yehuda Amichai.
Bino Realuyo: The Gods We Worship Live Next Door.
Luis Francia: Museum of Absences.
Collected Poems of Philip Whalen
Until recently, I've been flat out broke, busted, in debt. And since, at one point, I had 4 part time jobs, I hardly had time to think about purchasing poetry books.
Also, people keep mailing me poetry books, for which I am grateful. // Philip Whalen's Collected Poems is the first major poetry book purchase I've made since I became more or less in the black. I already have a list ready for my next purchases, though. For me, buying poetry is a luxury, and now that I have a regular income, I still have to condition myself into believing that it's really ok for me to spend my money on such books.
Rebecca Loudon: Tin House, The Paris Review, The Believer, Lungfull!, Forklift Ohio, Chicago Review, Farid Matuk’s Is It The King, Amy Gerstler’s Crown of Weeds, Cal Bedient’s Candy Necklace, Cal Bedient’s The Violence of the Morning, Franz Wright’s God’s Silence: Poems. Sometimes Poetry if I am tricked into it by the cover. Ploughshares for the fiction.
Ross: About 100, so I won't name them all, but my most recent purchases were Robert Hass's Praise and a subscription to New England Review.
Vangie Buell: Something about the Blues by Al Young California Poet Laureate
ANONYMOUS #15: A sampling: After the Poison by Collin Kelley, Trouble & Honey by Jilly Dybka, Queen of a Rainy Country by Linda Paston, The Fotieth Day by Kazim Ali, Theories of Falling by Sandra Beasley, Selected Poems by Frank O'Hara, Selected Poems by Robert Creeley, God Particles by Thomas Lux, Behind My Eyes by Li-Young Lee, Life For Us by Chorman Hardi.
firstcitybook: Most recently, I discovered Robert Wrigley's Earthly Meditations, his collection of new and selected poems, at Foozles, a discount bookstore in the Kansas City metro area. Since I have two other of his books, I decided to augment my collection by getting his selected poems and reading some of the poems from earlier books of his. // I pre-ordered Derick Burleson's Never Night from the publisher and received my copy in June. Derick and I were friends once while in graduate school together at Kansas State. I continue to follow his career even though we no longer talk or exchange letters. // I picked up a copy of Paul Zimmer's Family Reunion when I was browsing at Half Price Books in Lawrence, Kansas. I already have his Crossing to Sunlight. Even though Family Reunion is an earlier collection of selected poems, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to get another book by Paul Zimmer. // therwise, I ordered B.H. Fairchild's The Art of the Lathe, The Arrival of the Future, and Early Occult Memory Systems of the Lower Midwest from Amazon and got all three books at a reduced price by purchasing used copies. I had read these books before by having ordered them through interlibrary loan, but I decided to purchase them earlier this year because I remembered to and because his poems often deal with his life in Kansas. It seemed important to obtain the books of a poet who identifies with the region where I Iive. // I didn't purchase any books of poems by women this year. That fact doesn't mean I don't read poems by women. When I was working as a judge for the Bluestem Press, I selected books by Deborah Gregor, Sherry Fairchok, Sheryl Luna, and Virgina Chase Sutton, all of whom had their books published elsewhere. The judge during those years apparently didn't agree with my choices.
Kelli Agodon:
Hardscrabble, Kevin McFadden
Unmentionables, Beth Ann Fennelly
2 Lorna Crozier books
Mary Oliver's new and selected
Lia Purpura's King Baby
duende by Tracy K Smith
Meaning a Cloud by JW Marshall
Joannie Stangeland's chapbook

For gifts--
Cures Include Travel Susan Rich
Blue Positive Martha Silano

There was more, these are what I remember...
Aileen Ibardaloza: Birthday Letters by Ted Hughes, I Know why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou and Rappin' with Ten Thousand Carabaos in the Dark by Al Robles
Reb Livingston: I'm not sure if this is a complete list, to the best of my recollection:
Open House, by Hannah Weiner
When I said Goodbye, by Didi Menendez
Romance of Happy Workers, by Anne Boyer
Necropolis, by Jill Alexander Essbaum
Irresponsibility by Chris Vitiello
Language for a New Century: Contemporary Poetry from the Middle East,
Asia, and Beyond byTina Chang (Editor), Ravi Shankar (Editor),
Nathalie Handal (Editor)
Reptile House by Lisa Jarnot
From the Beginning by Alice Notley
Awe, by Dorthea Lasky
Talk Poetry by Mairead Byrne
Radish King by Rebecca Loudon
Bone Pagoda by Susan Tichey
The Totality for Kids by Joshua Clover
Necessary Stranger by Graham Foust
Folly, by Nada Gordon
Wicked, Excellently by Brent Terry
[one love affair] by Jenny Boully
F2F by Janet Holmes
Document by Ana Bozicevic-Bowling
Figures for a Darkroom Voice by Noah Eli Gordon, Joshua Marie Wilkinson,
Notes for My Body Double by Paul Guest
Gone by Fanny Howe
Bliss to Fill by Prageeta Sharma
Borrowed, Love Poems by John Yau
The Stunt Double in Winter by Robyn Art
Birds and Fancies by Elizabeth Treadwell
Sappho: A New Translation
The Collected Poems of Ted Berrigan
The Name Encanyoned River: Selected Poems 1960-1985 by Clayton Eshleman

Ed Baker: I bought a book in 1999, Carl Rakosi's THE OLD POET'S TALE // and since then,
Hilda moreley's CLOUDLESS AT FIRST
Micheline's RIVER OF RED WINE (Harvey is a distant cousin)

I also just bought 20 copies of my own book (as we speak at publisher's printer), RESTORATION POEMS ( // and ALL purchases made via my monthly Social Security check ($400!)
Carter Monroe: All were books of poetry as such, with the exception of about three books of criticism/biography such as David Lehman's "The Last Avant-Garde." None were journals, magazines, or random mixed collections.

3) If you have bought a poetry publication, how did it/they come to your attention?
Ernesto Priego: Browsing in book shops. Also through friends’ recommendations. (Ivy Alvarez told me about The Wolf, I think.)
Barbara Jane Reyes: always known of and am now catching up on my ginsberg
Miguel Syjuco: I tend to buy those names I already know, or of people I know personally. I admit that I am wary. I read a lot of stuff I hate in magazines and lit journals, so I am afraid of spending my scarce money on poetry collections that I may not like. I tend to stick to work that has already been vouched for by history, critics, or friends who know. // Hope this helps! Sorry for my troglodyte confessions!
Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor: I wanted to read Alexie's poetry and I chose BFD over his other collections because of the movie, and the anthology was recommended to me for my daughter to read. The anthology has poems about love and relationships from both the girl and boy POVs and the bookseller thought it was a good step beyond the Shel Silverstein series. // Sadly, with my current studies in Children's Lit writing, I don't have occasion to buy poetry like before
ANONYMOUS #1: Different ways.
Becca: I usually find out about new books online (blogs, SPD bestseller list, GoodReads, listservs like Pussipo), or simply by keeping tabs on what my favorite poets/presses are up to. // I know way too many poets who never buy books of poems, or who feel too overwhelmed to start digging through SPD to acquaint themselves with what smaller presses are producing. But I think most of these people, if they don't want to spend money, do want to learn about books that are inaccessible to them via Borders/B&N/Amazon.
John Bloomberg-Rissman: Mostly word of mouth, SPD catalog, author’s rep, ownership of previous publications by same author, because the author’s a friend, or a friend of a friend, etc. In no particular order. Rarely because of reviews, except of course, reviews at Galatea Resurrects. And bought books from BlazeVOX's Bake Sale as "can't let a good press go down"...
Crag Hill: I have about three dozen poets I'll buy/read every book they've done (I rarely read reviews anymore, though I read a ton about poetry on blogs). When I go to a bookstore like Powell's in Portland, I'll pick up a book or two from poets whose work I've seen in zines or on-line over the years but haven't read a book from yet (Gizzi's The Outernationale). I've also been re-acquiring books that kicked my ass 20-30 years ago (e.g. Dorn's Slinger).
Bino A. Realuyo: NA
K. Silem Mohammad: Through various forms of word of mouth, usually web announcements.
Logan Ryan Smith: Mostly thru friends and blogs.
Chris Stroffolino: this may change, i hope
ANONYMOUS #2: I usually buy because I've either read something in a journal that intrigued me, I picked up a book off the shelf and it intrigued me, or I've just had some interest in checking out that poet for a while.
Michael Wells: In some instances I attended readings of a poet that I learned was featured in an upcoming issue. Poetry Magazine I bought off a magazine rack after seeing who was in a particular issue. Court Green I bought because of a theme I heard about on the Internet, but mostly I;ve bought them because of someone featured in them. On Books:
Migration - W.S. Merwin - bought in part because of review - but also because I particularly like Merwin's work.

Later - Cecilia Woloch - Bought largely because I had read poetry she wrote online and liked it

What is This Thing Called Love - Kim Addonizio - Bought at a reading of hers

Small Knots - Kelli Russell Agodon - Bought because of internet contact with poet

Honey and Junk - Dana Goodyear - Had read about her in Poets & Writers - went to a reading of her's and bought book

Where Shall I Wonder - John Ashbery - Saw it at the Bookstore, it was Ashbery, did I need another reason? ;)

The Poet's Notebook: Excerpts from the Notebooks of Contemporary American Poets (Paperback) - David Weiss - Bought after reading about it on Internet.

Poemcrazy: Freeing Your Life with Words (Paperback) - Bought on impulse

The Poet's Companion: A Guide to the Pleasures of Writing Poetry (Paperback) - Kim Addonizio - Bought at Reading

ANONYMOUS #3: Word of mouth (publications by peers), recommendation
Jordan Stempleman: I am finding many, many things that I need to read on Goodreads, trolling my friends bookshelves. I also find quite a few books from reading blogs, and picking up a copy of Rain Taxi, or any of the other publications that print book reviews--Jacket, Galatea Resurrects, Constant Critic, etc.
ANONYMOUS #4: I buy books at readings I attend, through small press' websites (that I check regularly for updates, or sometimes via links from email blasts), through Small Press Distribution (sign up for their newsletter!), and from used book stores. I used to purchase new books from my local, non-chain, independent bookseller, but the only worthwhile store that fits that description here in my new hometown of Chicago is Seminary Co-op, and that's very difficult for me to reach with any regularity. I almost invariably purchase several books from Bridge Street Books in Washington D.C. via mailorder when prompted by their regular email blasts. When I lived near Ann Arbor, I would try to purchase from Shaman Drum, but their selection was and apparently remains mediocre. Talking Leaves in Buffalo was much better, as was Prairie Lights in Iowa City. When I lived in Berkeley, CA, I had the great advantage of browsing the SPD warehouse shelves. If I may take this opportunity to encourage everyone reading this who feels underserved by indie booksellers to buy directly from presses--especially if they offer subscriptions--or from SPD. If you buy from Amazon, Borders, or Barnes and Noble, you are not only constricting your access to poetry of certain usually bland stripes but you are also doing possible damage to the presses you are ostensibly supporting with your purchase (due to enforced high overhead costs which trickle down to the publishers).
ANONYMOUS #5: I gave all my Will Alexander books to another poet who did not return them.
ANONYMOUS #6: Blog references, Review references, Library meanderings, Personal discovery online, etc. etc.
Bruce Covey: SPD catalogue, AWP, blogs, email, postcards, announcements from friends, facebook, goodreads, reviews, etc.
Claudia Carlson: See #2
ANONYMOUS #7: blogs, listserves, poetry reviews
ANONYMOUS #8: I read the authors work on online journals, or I know the author, or I am a fan of the press, or I wanted to know more about the press before I submitted work to them. Also, of course, to support small presses.
Steffen Brown: I keep an eye out for people i like. i subscribe to presses that continually put out great work. i read blogs and check out review sites like and silliman, etc.
Jesse Glass: Bookstores, Amazon
Andrea Baker: William Blake: The Complete Illuminated Books. Selected Poems of Rene Char. Both of these are from talking to Matthew Henriksen. // At AWP I purchased Grossman’s Descartes Loneliness (I like Grossman who Matt also turned me onto), Awe by Dorothea Lasky (hard to know what the origin of the buzz about that book was: readings/seeing poems/her “tour”....), and a New Directions book of spiritually oriented writing (because it’s an interest of mine)... I don’t remember what else. // Bookstore purchases are generally contemporary poets whose work I’ve seen in journals but I’m not sure exactly what I’ve bought.... Certainly much less than normal as I’m getting a philosophy/religious studies degree and most of my reading has been in that direction. (And I’ve been obsessed with Rilke so never feel I really need a new book to satisfy me.) // Oh, and I know I ordered Max Winter’s book from Tarpaulin Sky Press book after hearing him read.
ANONYMOUS #9: See Answers 1 and 2.
Mark Young: See #2
ANONYMOUS #10: Again-over 12 months ago, but the poet read at the Carmel author event last year
ANONYMOUS #11: Landfall – a friend was in it. Contemporary Poets - I read a good review of it. Imago and Mercurius – a friend wrote them
J.P. Dizon: Referred to me, some I just picked up by random I suppose in bookstores
Joel: Website reviews, editorial picks, author's websites, etc...
ANONYMOUS 11B: usually because I know someone involved or know someone who knows someone involved. sometimes through a review.
Catherine Wagner: Blogs; encountering the publication at a reading or festival or conference; word of mouth; ads (these only work if I am already a fan of the poet)
ANONYMOUS #12: Often, i am guided by chance browsings at the local indie bookshops -- itsa satisfying rush to have that rare moment: "holy shit! they gotta book by ___________ !"
Richard Lopez: from browsing the stacks at local bookstores, or trips to moe's in berkeley, or reading a review then looking for the book online, or going thru the spd catalog like a kid eyeballing the toys in the toys r us xmas wishbook, or every permutation of search inbetween.
1. Blog
2. I had previously owned it
3. Saw it at the bookstore
Guillermo Parra: A friend of mine recommended Miguel James to me years ago, and I came across this new edition of his work at a bookstore in Caracas last month.
Dan Waber: Lots of ways. Browsing bookshops, at small press book fairs, the new books of people whose work I know and like, visiting other small presses and finding books they're publishing that I'm interested in, I collect the work of a hugely prolific poet, visiting the homes of other poets and looking through their books and listening to their recommendations, recommendations from others. I will say this (sorry), I've never purchased a book because of a review I read or because of the blurb on the back.
Tom Beckett: I actively seek out books. I regularly read reviews. I regularly explore new and used brick and mortar bookstores. Online bookstores and blogs are also great resources. If I like a writer, I try to read everything they do. I'm also constantly looking for what's new and innovative.
V. Ponka: Read about online, for the most part… But many of the above books are classics that I have been wanting to pick up for a long time.
Lars Palm: in all manner of ways
Lee Herrick: From the authors themselves, other friends' recommendations, online or print magazines.
Geof Huth: For some of these books, I’ve no idea how I first heard of them. They are part of my psyche now, and I just needed to buy them. // The Redfoxpress books I learned about first by finding a few of the titles at Printed Matter in New York City, but now I subscribe to their “C’est mon dada” series. // Some books (the first Creeley Collected, the Oppen, the Olson, the Silliman) I’ve been looking for in bookstores for a while, but only the Olson showed up in a bookstore. The others I had to purchase online. // I learned of some of these books (Vengua, the Everson Rabbit book) via blog postings. // Some I purchased almost for a lark (the Ryan, having graduated from a high school named after him; the Longfellow, deciding I should give this guy a chance; the Wolfe, since the queer found poetry aspect of this interests me and since Wolfe was important to me in my adolescence). // Most books I found by chance by checking the poetry sections of used and new bookstores. A few are from poets I’m unfamiliar with. And I’ve begun a practice of purchased collected poems by almost anyone when I run across them. That way I can learn a lot about individual poets and move on, without overworrying about what of their work I may have missed. // As a poet, I believe that purchasing books of poetry is a requirement of life, a pact I’ve made with other poets.
Burt Kimmelman: The authors made me aware of these books or had me on mailing lists that publishers used.
Marcella Durand: Chance operations, mostly--spotting them at a used bookstore or writers' event such as AWP or Naropa--and "must having them." Then, for the others, reading a good review or hearing from other writers.
Anthony Robinson: I think I just have my ear to the ground.
Anny Ballardini: I could copy Tom [Beckett]’s answer here. I am also influenced by what other people are reading, what they advise. One book leads to all the books written by an Author, and then to his favorites, and then to those who influenced him/her and the ones influenced by him/her and then and then…
It is a never-ending exponential process, and well, you will have to deal with it.
Jonathan Cohen: I got some of them because I saw them on Ron Silliman's or Mark Scroggins's blogs. Others, like the Traherne and the Swinburne, I heard of independently.
Remy: Most were from browsing used bookstores, I'll buy most anything if its under four dollars (re: Tess Gallagher, Sound & Form). Others came from word of mouth or from the trades (Nurkse, Van Winckel), I'm distantly related to Brooks Haxton. Graham and Lux weedled a gift certificate from me. I translate Neruda. Who doesn't buy a well priced Frost, Milosz, Hopkins, or WCW? I moved from two favorites Kevin Young and Aimee Nez to Mackey and Derricotte and Dhompa respectively.
Tess Crescini: (No Answer)
Rhodora: anthologies, Poets & Writers, reluctantly walking into a bookstore when I mean to shop for other things ( browsing in the Poetry corner.)
ANONYMOUS #14: I bought them while attending readings, and in the case of Whalen, I read a review, and purchased it from
Rebecca Loudon: I buy Tin House when I can because I love the fiction in it, and the independent bookstore near my house carries it. I bought The Believer because someone I know had a piece in it. I have a subscription to Forklift Ohio, it’s my favorite journal. I bought Matuk’s book because I read a poem of his online and loved it. I bought Lungfull! Because there is an ad in it for my forthcoming book. I bought Amy Gerstler’s book because a friend loaned me a copy of Ghost Girl and I fell in love and when I fall in love with a poet, I have to read everything they’ve written. Same with Cal Bedient. I bought some books that John Marshall at Open Books recommended to me and he is always good at that. The other books were impulse buys, usually because someone gave me a gift card. There have been many more, and I’m sorry to say I can’t remember them all. But books come to my attention when I see them at my favorite independent bookstore, when they come highly recommended by a friend, or when I read poems by poets online that I love. I don't have enough money to buy a book a friend publishes just because I love that person. I have to really pick and choose what I buy based on the poems themselves. I wish I had enough loose cash to buy every book every blogger I know publishes, but that time has not yet come for me.
Ross: Recommendations, reading about them on the web, and print book reviews all play in.
Vangie Buell: Al Young is a long time friend..and I have collected his works for many years. He wrote a blurb for my book "Twenty five Chickens and Pig for a Bride".
ANONYMOUS #15: Friends, Surfing blogs, reading the Amazon top 100 poetry books list.
James Cooper: See No. 2
Kelli Agodon: Most are from poems I read online then googled to the poet to see if I liked more of their work, then I bought their book. // Others are from readings.
Aileen Ibardaloza: The 'Bargain-priced' section at B&N and Poetry readings
Reb Livingston: Too many ways to include here. Followed people's work, followed what a press publishes, read reviews, recommended by friends, saw on a bookstore shelf, saw on goodreads, etc. // Like you, I get a lot of books sent to me or trade.
Ed Baker: See #2
Carter Monroe: I have a mentality that, for lack of a better term, logically connects. At least that's what I "think" happens. It goes back to reading "Trout Fishing in America" back in 1971 and noting that Brautigan dedicated the book to Jack Spicer. It was like I had to know who Jack Spicer was. One thing always seems to lead to another. It's the same with music. I could hear what I thought to be a great pianist on an album/cassette/cd and at some point down the road when the man/woman ceased to be a sideman and had his/her own production, I'd buy it. Plus, I tend to explore and define "movements" in depth. I search for the answers to questions like, "What constitutes a first generation member of The New York or Black Mountain Schools."

I see a great number of books I want to buy in such places as the introductions to other books or even specific poem dedications. In short, I simply want "to know." Also, I seem to have the ability to totally separate the dancer from the dance. A poet on a blog might render an opinion that I think is total trash, but that doesn't deter me from buying his/her work and doesn't affect my opinion of it. Virtually all readers of poetry tend to abuse verbosity when the end result almost always boils down to "like/don't like."

I "will" render a very rare opinion in this answer that would likely rattle a few heads. I firmly believe that history names its movements. I think that to label and describe such things in process is like someone once said about Wynton Marsalis. "He needs to quit working to define his place in jazz history and just play."


Sunday, August 17, 2008


Dealing right now with ramifications of having to leave the country soon for approximately six weeks.

So if I'm ignoring you, it ain't personal.

More deets later.

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Saturday, August 16, 2008


So I inadvertently joined GOODREADS (don't ask how "inadvertently" coz I'm a luddite and I can't explain how because I'm a ... luddite). But since I was on, I started logging in my books. Well, about 200 books later, I realize, I'm supposed to rate them as to how, I suppose, they're "good reads." I'd been rating every book I list the maximum five stars since, following how I define "Relish" on moi "Relished W(h)ine List", if the book got me to read it through its last page, then that's good enough for me.

All these peeps who look at the five stars I list on GOODREADS should obviously be aware of above caveat. When it comes to poetry, I practice what I preach -- I don't have gates to guard.

But speaking of more GOOD READS, the deadline is coming up for the special RELEASE OFFER for Mark Young's long-awaited PELICAN DREAMING: POEMS 1959-2008! You have until the end of the month to avail yourself of this GIFT!

Meanwhile, Ahhhh...the pleasure Moi dears of exercising my culinary skills utilizing what I harvest from the garden (and the Peeps who know her relationship with the kitchen shake their heads, rub their eyes, not sure they're reading correctly....). Today, I made fried rice for L U N C H! But, chopped into said rice were green onions, green peppers and tomatoes from the garden! Along with left-overs from the fridge: a carrot, some chicken, half a yellow onion, garlic and broccoli. Geoffrey Gatza -- you better watch out! I'm hot on your trail! (But for dessert, exotic spices and other non-pretender culinary delights, do try BlazeVOX's Extraordinary Bake Sale (with literary raffle) HERE!)

And here's the latest Relished W(h)ine List:


12 Santa Rosa plums
50 apricots
82 strawberries
1,451 basil leaves
327 purple basil leaves
267 mint leaves
405 pinches of parsley
3 zucchini
2 yellow squash
1 orange squash
84 tomatoes
40 green figs
11 green onion stalks
33 green peppers
8 Japanese eggplants
45 purple table grapes

OSTERGOTLAND (A FOUND POEM), hay(na)ku sequence by Lars Palm

TERGIVERSATION, poems by Bruna Mori

SEPARATE OBJECTS, poems by Dennis Barone


VERTIGO, poems by Martha Ronk

LOST ORPHICS, poems by James Stotts

NURSERY RHYMES, poems by James Stotts

SKIRT OF BLACK, poems by Sun Yung Shin


HAIKU NOT BOMBS by Collectivo Haiku

DECALCOMANIA, ascemic writing by Tim Gaze

SIGNIFICATION & SINIFICATION, essay by Christian Dotremont


RURAL LIFE, essays/memoir by Verlyn Klinkenborg



THE POSTMAN, novel by David Brin

WHEN THE WIND BLOWS, novel by James Patterson

THE LAKE HOUSE, novel by James Patterson

JACK & JILL, novel by James Patterson

DEATH ANGEL, novel by Linda Howard

QUICKSAND, novel by Iris Johansen

THE FIRST 48 HOURS, novel by Tim Green

2004 Saxum "Broken Stones" Paso Robles
2007 Folie A Deux "Menage A Trois" NV
1994 San Vicente Rioja
2005 Peter Michael "Mont Plaisir"
2003 Dancing Hares cab
1990 Gaja Sperss
2005 or 2006 Verget Chablis
2003 Rausan Despagne
1994 Seavey cabernet

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Wednesday, August 13, 2008


I was over at U.C. Berkeley yesterday doing a lecture to a class that's using the BRICK as a textbook (hiya student peeps!)...and during the Q&A, one of the students questioned how I came to my vocabulary -- that she says I use words she doesn't usually see in poems.

I realized she was referring to a diction highly influenced by Wall Street jargon -- so I mentioned my background as a banker etcetera. But I then also said that what's great about poetry is that it gives you the excuse to delve into as many subjects as possible since Poetry can be about anything and everything. And I said jokingly (though only half-jokingly) that if you want to be a poet, don't be an English major or, as an English major, don't remain an English major if you want to jazz up your raw material of language. (I'm a former English major, btw, so you English-ers just hold your tomatoes, okay?) Of course a whole slew of poets come to mind whose non-literary experiences benefit their poems -- Forrest Gander, Diane Ackerman, the doctors, etcetera etcetera.

All this is to lead to where, finally, my M.B.A. counts for something. I've got a couple of questioning if not questionable poems in Marne Kilates' fabulous blog-based literary/arts journal Poets' PictureBook. It's for a so-called "Poetry and Math" issue and Marne thought my poems were "algebraic"...then notes in his Editor's Intro that I have an M.B.A. His take is amusing and amusingly welcome to Moi; even if inaccurate, I never challenge how others read my poems. Anyway, check out this lovely use of Blogger -- and of course I'm highly honored to be featured in there with three of the Philippines' top poets: Cirilo Bautista, Marjorie Evasco and Victor Penaranda.

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