Poetry Book Club: BEST AMERICAN POETRY 2017, edited by David Lehman and Natasha Trethewey (Part 1)

  • Sunday, October 14, 2018
  • 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM
  • Wherever you fire up your computer!

FREE Members-only discussion!  

6:00–7:30 PM (Eastern) / 3:00–4:30 PM (Pacific) / Check your time-zone HERE.

REGISTER HERE (NOTE: You do not need to commit to all book-club sessions to participate.)

In our debut poetry book-club gathering, facilitated by Lisa St. John, we will look at the first half of The Best American Poetry 2017, edited by David Lehman and Natasha Trethewey: the foreword, introduction, and first 37 poems, through page 76. To inform the poems, you may also wish to read the Contributors' Notes and Comments on pages 171–196. (We will discuss the rest of this book in our second session, on December 2.)

In his introduction, Lehman asks, “What qualifies as literature?” We will explore this idea as well as consider Trethewey’s comment that “poetry helped [her] contend with the reality of the world.” Come prepared to informally discuss the poems and their resonance for you: what you loved or hated or wondered about, what stuck with you for whatever reason. Let’s have fun and keep in mind what poet Lucille Clifton articulates so beautifully: “[T]he first poets didn’t come out of a classroom . . . poetry began when somebody walked off of a savanna or out of a cave and looked up at the sky with wonder and said, ‘Ahhh.‘ That was the first poem.” 


Click on the book cover to purchase your copy of Best American Poetry 2017!