Book picks similar to
Rise Up by Matthew Rohrer


Nick Demske

Nick Demske - 2010
    "Nick Demske writes from culture like the Hollywood version of a rebellious slave, the role shredding off him, culture's synthetic exemplary tales shredding and piling up on the floor of the projector room."—Joyelle McSweeneyHis name is "a transcendant uber-obsenity that can be understood universally by speakers of any language."

Your Time Has Come

Joshua Beckman - 2004
    This new collection showcases Beckman’s ability, even within the confines of a few brief lines, to suggest and sustain emotions, landscapes, humor and desire.

The Pajamaist

Matthew Zapruder - 2006
    In his second collection he engages love, mortality, and life in New York City after 9/11. The title piece, a prose-poem synopsis of an unwritten novel, turns all literary forms upon themselves with savvy and flair, while the elegy cycle “Twenty Poems for Noelle” is a compassionate song for a suffering friend.Noelle, somewhere in an apartmentsymphony number twolistens to you breathing.Broken glass in the street.What was once unglowing glows. . . The Pajamaist is an intimate book filled with sly wit and an ever-present, infectious openness to amazement. Zapruder’s poems are urbane and constantly, curiously searching.

You and Three Others Are Approaching a Lake

Anna Moschovakis - 2011
    Plato would have loved them."—Ann LauterbachIn a world where we find "everything helping itself / to everything else," Anna Moschovakis incorporates Craigslist ads, technobabble, twentieth-century ethics texts, scientific research, autobiographical detail, and historical anecdote to present an engaging lyric analysis of the way we live now. "It's your life," she tells the reader, "and we have come to celebrate it."

Seven Notebooks: Poems

Campbell McGrath - 2008
    Written in forms that range from haiku to prose, and in a voice that veers from incanta­tory to deadpan, these seven poetic sequences offer diverse reflections on language and poetry, time and consciousness, civilization and art—to say nothing of bureaucrats, surfboards, and blue margaritas. Taken collectively, Seven Notebooks composes a season-by-season account of a year in the life of its narrator, from spring in Chicago to summer at the Jersey Shore to winter in Miami Beach. Not a novel in verse, not a poetic journal, but a lyric chronicle, this utterly unique book reclaims territory long abandoned by American poetry, a characteristic ambition of Campbell McGrath, one of the most honored, accessible, and humanistically engaged writers of our time.

Invisible Bride

Tony Tost - 2004
    Like a fantastic film, a feverish delirium, or a dream state, these prose poems use an experimental lexicon of imagery that goes beyond anything typically poetic. Tost's point of departure is the loss of the Other that makes the I: Agnes, And in a sort of coming-of-age soliloquy song, he meditates on a range of topics: fatherhood, childhood, identity, poetry. Together his poems express the unburdening of consciousness, a consciousness that contains the likes of Blake, Italo Calvino, Allen Grossman, and Frank Stanford, among others (including Tost himself), Surreal and surprising, Invisible Bride showcases the prose artistry of a new American talent.

If Birds Gather Your Hair for Nesting

Anna Journey - 2009
    Her poems are haunted by demons, ghosts, and even the living who wander exotic landscapes that appear at once threatening and seductive. In these poems, her sly speaker renames a pink hibiscus on display at Lowe's, "Lucifer's Panties"; another character chants, "I'd fall devil / over heels over edge over oleander"; and one woman writes a letter to the underworld:Dear black bayou, once, by a riverI bit a man's neck. His scent: the rawteak air husked inside stomachs of sixRussian nesting dolls--the ones in the attic I pulledapart and open. The ones Ipulled apart and open like Styrofoam cups.

A Gringo Like Me: Poems

Jennifer L. Knox - 2005
    Knox’s A Gringo Like Me contains poems at once raucous and sexy, tender and raw. Knox has collected dramatic monologues, personal lyrics, and even screenplays together in a single energetic volume for a genuinely surprising debut. In favorites such as “Hot Ass Poem,” “Cruising for Prostitutes,” and “Chicken Bucket,” Knox’s quirky characters appear ornery, hickish, misogynist, or worse, but each elucidates a truth worth knowing, even if it’s not always welcome. In poems like "A Common American Name" and "Freckles," Knox’s lyrical voice charms readers. Between the poles of her unique range, Knox straddles and tames what she may yet prove to be an artificial divide in American poetry: she's a former slam champion, but also a two-time contributor to The Best American Poetry; she's a hilarious performer on stage, but also a deeply intellectual and formally disciplined poet.

Gardening in the Dark

Laura Kasischke - 2004
    Her poems take us to the flip side of human consciousness, where anything can happen at any time. Tinged with surrealism, her work makes visionary leaps from the quotidian to sudden, surprising epiphanies.

Theories of Falling

Sandra Beasley - 2008
    THEORIES OF FALLING is the winner of the 2007 New Issues Poetry Prize. Judge Marie Howe said of THEORIES OF FALLING, "I kept coming back to these poems--the tough lyric voice that got under my skin. Clear, intent, this poet doesn't want to fool herself or anybody else. Desire pushes defeat against the wall, and the spirit climbs up from underground." "Sandra Beasley slices her way down the page with precision and punch. Her haunting 'Allergy Girl' series will set off such an itch, I doubt you'll ever fully recover...This poet leaves us to smolder and ache in small kingdoms where 'even the tame dogs dream of biting clear to the bone.'"--Aimee Nezhukumatathil.

X: Poems

James Galvin - 2003
    In his sixth book of poems, James Galvin writes from a deep, philosophical engagement with the landscape and faces a "vertigo of solitude" with his marriage dissolved, his only daughter grown and gone, and the log house he built by hand abandoned. "What did I love that made me believe it would last?" he asks.Something has to be true enough to beTaken for granted.In the hospital I sawAn old manCaressing the face of an old woman.This same man, young, caressed her faceIn just that way.That’s the stillnessAt the center of change—A sadness worth dying for, I swear—There is no other.—from "Dying into What I’ve Done""James Galvin has a voice and a world, perhaps the two most difficult things to achieve in poetry."—The Nation"In James Galvin we have a superior poet."—American Book Review"Galvin’s poems have the virtues of precise observation and original language, yes, but what he also brings to the table is a rigor of mind and firmness of phrasing which make the slightest of his poems an architectural pleasure."—Harvard ReviewJames Galvin has published five collections of poetry, most recently Resurrection Update: Collected Poems 1975–1997, which was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award and the Lenore Marshall/The Nation Prize. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed prose book, The Meadow and a novel, Fencing the Sky. He lives in Laramie, Wyoming, where he works as a rancher part of each year, and in Iowa City, where he is a member of the permanent faculty of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop.

The Dollmaker's Ghost

Larry Levis - 1981
    A reissuing of The Dollmaker’s Ghost, poetry by Larry Levis.

The Legend of Light

Bob Hicok - 1995
    But his resilient voice and consistent perspective is neither blaming nor didactic, and ultimately enlightening. From the shadowed corners into which we dare not look clearly, Hicok makes us witness and hero of The Legend of Light.

Case Sensitive

Kate Greenstreet - 2006
    Greenstreet's highly original CASE SENSITIVE posits a female central character who writes chapbooks that become the sections in this book. What happens in the book I want to read? Greenstreet asked herself. And how would it sound? Everything the character is reading, remembering, and dreaming turns up in what she writes, duly referenced with notes. Using natural language charged with concision and precise syntax, Greenstreet has created a memorable and lasting first collection. A poem intrigue of the highest order. Greenstreet has made a brilliant beginning with this first book--Kathleen Fraser. A beautiful dwelling of ideas. CASE SENSITIVE suggests that there need be no divide between the associative connections of poetry and the extended thinking of the essay. This is a book full of luminous footnotes, details, and attentive readings. CASE SENSITIVE strings together a series of moments to create something resonate, large, and inclusive--Juliana Spahr.

Hourglass Museum

Kelli Russell Agodon - 2010
    Her uniquely true and mystical voice is like a glass of pure water: refreshing, healing, and oh, so necessary."—Nin Andrews"Her poems are an intense vision of the power of art to heal, to help us understand ourselves and our world. Agodon invokes artists as disparate as Kahlo and Cornell, Picasso and Pollock, as a way into the world she creates for us in her deft and musical poems. She brilliantly succeeds."—Wyn CooperKelli Russell Agodon is the author of two previous collections of poetry and lives in Kingston, Washington.