We have gathered four poetry collections by four exceptional poets that you should know about and dive into next year.
Rudy Francisco’s ‘Helium’ is what all poetry collections aspire to be: memorable. Somehow, Rudy’s anthology manages to be thought provoking, resonant, occasionally funny, and incredibly honest. The award-winning poet skilfully addresses an array of relatable themes, including self-esteem, mental health, love, and trauma, with an artistic flair that compliments each poem delightfully. Francisco’s stunning use of metaphor is both majestic and admirable, and will have readers returning to select poems with hope of discovering new meaning with each individual read through.
Anthony Anaxagorou’s ‘Heterogeneous’ is quite literally the literary embodiment of a powerhouse poetry collection. The 224-page anthology features poetry from the eminently gifted Anaxagorou on a wide array of pertinent subjects that range from politics and oppression to love and relationships. Anaxagorou combines a candid and forthright approach with a studious and eloquently artistic style to create a reading experience that lingers in the mind long after the final poem is read.
2. Medusa Wore a Weave
‘Medusa Wore a Weave’ is the debut collection from rapper and spoken word artist, Tommy A-Man Evans, and collects some of the wordsmith’s best work. Evans, known for his superb lyricism and intellectually driven wordplay, manages to adapt his work for the page in seamless fashion without compromising the integrity of his refreshingly unique and piquant style of poetry. As a result, the reader is treated to an extraordinarily well-written collection that is as much a glimpse into the author’s mind as it is a lesson in structure and storytelling.
1. Postcolonial Banter
The debut anthology from Suhaiymah Manzoor-Khan, ‘Postcolonial Banter’, is as strikingly evocative as it is felicitous, collecting some of the 2016 Roundhouse Poetry Slam semi-finalist’s greatest work to date, such as ‘British Values’ and ‘This is Not a Humanising Poem’, along with many anthology exclusives. The author’s keen sense of purpose and altruistic motivation remains present throughout the collection, which features poetry on a variety of relevant topics including politics, oppression, and identity, and firmly establishes the writer as one of the most accomplished, and equally uncompromising, contemporary poets.
Written by: Liam Spencer