As I mentioned yesterday, I read a lot of great poetry in 2022, so it was tricky to put together this list. A lot of my poetry reviews boil down to ‘vibes good’ and ‘imagery or lines that just hit me in the chest’ so this isn’t the most articulate list of why these collections are good, but just some of my favourites of 2022. Links to full reviews in the titles where I’ve written them.
- Please Press by Kat Sinclair – A powerful pamphlet that I sadly cannot say anything else about because I am many miles from my copy currently and I did not write anything about it at the time. But go get it from Sad Press and see why it’s great.
- Limbic by Peter Scalpello – I ended up with two copies of this, one from each of the book subscriptions I had in 2022 (Cipher Press and Lighthouse bookshop’s poetry subscription), which tells you it must be a good intersection of my taste. Sex, queerness, tracksuits, tiny moments – there’s plenty to enjoy.
- All The Flowers Kneeling by Paul Tran – A collection exploring violence and storytelling that was so compulsive I accidentally stayed up late reading it, not something I tend to do with poetry.
- A Little Resurrection by Selina Nwulu – Some of my favourite parts of this great collection was the use of imagery and the engagement with space, as poems look at race and place and bring in elements of climate and convenience.
- Yo-yo Heart by Laura Doyle Péan – Powerful poems moving through a breakup to show the political nature of healing, filled with wit and sadness.
- The Moral Judgement of Butterflies by K. Eltinaé – I loved the form of these poems, which explore trauma and immigrant experience and the idea of home. One of the books I got from my Lighthouse bookshop poetry subscription and wouldn’t have discovered otherwise.
- Time Is A Mother by Ocean Vuong – Beautiful and highly readable. I expected a lot from Vuong and wasn’t disappointed.
- At Least This I Know by Andrés N. Ordorica – Going to steal a line from my own review to sum it up: “I knew I was going to like the collection from the first poem ‘November 16th, 2014’, which is a perfect opening for it: a moment at border control, encapsulating fear and desire for a place to belong, and a poem that almost makes you laugh and cry at once.”