In honor of National Poetry Month, the Academy of American Poets has teamed up with 826 National to highlight and celebrate the work of poets in cities with 826 chapters: Ann Arbor/Detroit, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C. Each chapter selected a poetry ambassador, who selected a poem written by a local poet and wrote a short essay about it. That poet picked another, and the chain goes on. Every Wednesday in April, we will reveal the next round of selected poems.
Last week, we unveiled the second round of picks, including poems by Joel Craig, Tarfia Faizullah, Fanny Howe, Reuben Jackson, Marisela Norte, Cedar Sigo, and Amber Tamblyn. This week we continue as those poets pick some of their own local favorites.
In Boston, Fanny Howe chooses Sam Cornish, describing his poems as “little flames that go up and down at the same time, shifting colors and intensities around a single figure: now a boy, now a man.”
In Chicago, Joel Craig picks a poem from Olivia Cronk’s first book, Skin Horse. According to Craig, Cronk’s poems “take you on a trip through everything you’ve been missing about the word—and your imaginative life.”
Washington, D.C.’s Reuben Jackson continues the chain with a poem by Lisa Pegram, who takes an honest look at what happens “After Dinner.”
Marisela Norte, last week’s pick from 826LA, picks “Sidonie” by Ramón García, who brings us to California where “Every ranchera houses memories / the blissful plaintiveness / of living fully.”
Last week Nick Flynn picked a poem from Amber Tamblyn’s Dark Sparkler for 826nyc, and this week Tamblyn turns to Rachel McKibbens’s “Last Love” poem, which she calls “one of the most haunting and raw contemporary love poems I have ever read.”
Finally, at 826 Valencia, Cedar Sigo picks the metrically and rhythmically diverse “gotham in arrears” by Julian Talamantez Brolaski.
Remember to check Stanza each Wednesday this month for the new poem selections from each city.