Once a year, Pushcart editors ask small press editors to submit six pieces from among the works they published in the year 2015 for possible inclusion in their annual compendium, The Pushcart Prize: Best of the Small Presses. This year, Poet Lore, the biannual poetry journal published by The Writer’s Center, selected works that stopped us in our tracks upon first reading and stuck with us long after. Read below for the list of chosen poems—from established and emerging voices—and information on their authors. But, first, enjoy the Carolyn Supinka’s nominated poem:
In the belly of summer
we walk through red fields
and watch a village burn. Scrub.
They are famous
for this, one boy says, points
at the plain. A long hot snake
winds at the horizon;
it’s easy to imagine the land
squeezing the life out of you.
As a child, I built houses
out of sticks and twine,
little wooden pyramids
testing the meaning of the word. Shelter.
The simplest terms of life. I pretended
I had been a hermit for years,
eating miraculous berries (blue,
deathless sustenance!), befriending
young deer. I pretended I’d died there,
and my nest became a grave,
and in the evening, I resurrected myself.
The boy: Can you believe–huts!
I believe huts. I believe in huts
and heat, the dark doorway,
the threshold between out and in.
Here are the poems Poet Lore chose from the work published on its pages in 2015:
From the Spring/Summer 2015 issue—
"Mending" by Noah Davis
NOAH DAVIS is studying English Literature at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, where he is a member of the men’s basketball team. “Mending” was his first published poem. He spends his free time on the mountains and streams of his Central Pennsylvania home.
"Vernacular Home" by Carolyn Supinka
CAROLYN SUPINKA is a visual artist and writer based in Washington, DC. Her poetry has appeared in journals such as Bodega, Fjords Review, The Allegheny Review, and The Oakland Review. Her artwork combines poetry and visuals to create installations and interventions that transform public space.
“We Grew Up” by Matt Terhune
MATT TERHUNE is the author of Bathhouse Betty (Autumn House Press). His work has appeared in various journals including American Poetry Review, Antioch Review, and Narrative. He lives in Los Angeles.
From the Fall/Winter 2015 issue—
"Bible Still Being Written" by Tony Hoagland
TONY HOAGLAND’s new book of poems, Application for Release from the Dream, is just out from Graywolf Press. He teaches at University of Houston.
"Written in Patria or Muerte" by Margaret Randall
MARGARET RANDALL is a poet, essayist, photographer, translator, and activist living in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Her most recent poetry book is About Little Charlie Lindbergh and Other Poems (Wings Press), and her most recent prose book is Haydee Santamaria, Cuban Revolutionary: She Led by Transgression (Duke University Press).
"Growing Old in the Foothills" by D. Nurkse
D. NURKSE is the author of ten books of poetry, most recently A Night in Brooklyn (Knopf, 2012).
Congratulations to these Poet Lore poets! The issues of Poet Lore featuring these nominated poems may be purchased here, at our E-Store.
Poet Lore would like to thank its publisher, The Writer’s Center, as well its loyal readership for their continued support of its work.