Unlike many other genres of literature, poetry tends to be an all-or-nothing type of experience. While some readers thoroughly enjoy poetry their entire lives, others may have no interest in the lyrical prose that poetry presents. Whether it’s intimidation, an assumption of misinterpretation, or a general lack of interest, even the most avid readers will shy away from books of poetry.
But poetry is unique, emotional, and completely creative. It pulls on the personal and imaginative parts of our hearts and brains, helping every reading to expand their minds and experience a deeper connection to literature as a whole. No matter your reason for staying away from poetry, these 7 books of poetry you’ll find below are sure to change your mind.
1. The Rose by Li Young Lee
If wordy, lengthy prose is the reason you’ve stayed away from poetry, Li Young Lee is here to save the day. This amazing poet uses simple, almost naive, language to address universal themes that people all over the world can relate to. Addressing his own tragic family history, the author takes readers on a journey that pulls on the heart from start to finish. As his first published book of poetry, the book is full of raw and honest poetry that hits home in areas of love, life, and family. Short and sweet, The Rose is a quick but emotional read you’ll want to pick up again and again.
2. The Last Night of the Earth Poems by Charles Bukowski
Author Charles Bukowski is extremely bold, honest, and unafraid to say things you may never dare to say aloud. These reasons, among many others, have made him a favorite poet all over the globe. Inspired by his own experiences in poverty, relationships, and hardship, The Last Night of the Earth speaks on modern subjects like war, poverty, illness, art, relationships, death, addiction, and more. No matter your experience with poetry (or lack thereof), you will find a relatable friend in Bukowski. This author’s ability to hold a conversation with every reader with such honesty will forever change your idea of poetry.
3. Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
This classic anthology of poems may be aimed at people of a younger generation, but who says children’s poetry can’t be read by adults? Where the Sidewalk Ends is loaded to the brim with poetry that stretches the imagination, but with very profound meaning. Shel Silverstein has been a favorite author among poetry lovers for decades. His unique ability to blend real-life situations and feelings is both wildly creativity and fun. We firmly believe that you can read and reread this collection at any age. Breezing through its pages, we dare you not to smile.
4. Teaching My Mother How to Give Birth by Warsan Shire
Many people may not know the name of Warsan Shire, but you definitely should. Not only is she featured in Beyonce’s Lemonade, but Shire is a force to be reckoned with in her own right. Teaching My Mother How to Give Birth is hard to dislike for anyone who breezes through its pages, with simple and easy-to-read prose. Warsan Shire is fearless with her words and as her debut pamphlet of poetry, she speaks on subjects like sensuality, feminism, trauma, and life, in a way that strikes a personal chord in every reader.
5. The Half-Finished Heaven by Tomas Transtromer
Tomas Transtromer became a global voice in the 20th century, translating into more than 50 languages worldwide. His descriptive, beautiful way of capturing the world around him into poetry even earned him the Nobel Prize in literature in 2011. The Half-Finished Heaven blends imagery and words together to discuss and describe the human condition in a mystical, bewitching way. As a trained and educated psychologist in Sweden, Transtromer has an enchanting way of putting imagery to every person’s humanity. His use of brilliant vocabulary and adjectives, as well as his ability to blend them all together in a song-like manner are only a few of the reasons he’ll be a favorite for centuries to come.
6. Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine
If you’re someone who has never had a desire to read poetry, this selection is the ideal first choice for you. Citizen: An American Lyric has won just about every award out there, and it’s easy to see why. As a contemporary and modern take on today’s society, it’s hard to put down. Bold, honest, and powerful, Claudia Rankine uses brilliant poetry to highlight racial issues, cultural tendencies, injustices, and life in modern society. Through each page, you are pulled into a heartfelt testament on the effects of injustice and simple assumptions in today’s world. Rankine’s words easily slip off the tongue in this fierce, groundbreaking book of poetry.
7. Sailing Alone Around the Room by Billy Collins
Billy Collins may not focus on any one specific theme, but his poetic form is unique and non-traditional. Mysterious and hard to put down, Sailing Alone Around the Room takes you on a journey that offers continuous surprises. Unlike any other book of poetry you’ll read, this anthology of poems speaks to a part of every person. Once you start, you’re guaranteed to be curious about what comes next. Collins maneuvers words, lyrical prose, and a simple voice into an enriching experience of wonder and fascination. This collection is the ideal choice for any reader who finds traditional prose mundane.
These books of poetry just scratch the surface of the treasures you can find when discovering new types of writing. Interested in expanding your exploration of new reads outside of your normal genres? Uncover new and exciting stories on BookBoro today!