Oh the places you’ll go…
10 Poetry Books For The Traveler
Whether you’re traveling through war-torn Ukraine, passing through lands affected by climate change, or experiencing the heights and depths of human emotion, these poetry books for the traveler will accompany you along the path.
No matter where we go or what we do, we are on our way, even when we’re standing still. These expertly curated selections of poetry lend their voices as a proverbial light along what can often be a dim lit road. No matter where you are on your journey, these titles will inspire hope and resiliency, as they seek bridge the gap of human experience and illuminate our way forward.
First thing you pack on a trip? Your favorite travel companion, a poetry book!
Made of Rivers by Emory Hall
In Emory Hall’s Made of Rivers, the path takes the shape of a great river, coursing through the shallows and shoals of the human heart. Each twist and turn transforms our perspectives into tributaries that reach a great ocean of Love that gravity cannot escape.
Climate by Whitney Hanson
Climate by Whitney Hanson is a treatise on change, navigating the constant transformations in our lives we witness both internally and externally. From heartbreak to weather patterns, this complex title puts an emphasizes embracing the beauty of change and the significance of enduring these experiences as we become more present with our shifting interpretations of reality.
If Hearts Had Training Wheels by Ellen Everett
If Hearts Had Training Wheels by Ellen Everett is a collection of poetry centered around the theme of cycling. Each poem takes the reader for a ride along to various destinations, taken from Everett’s experiences on her bicycle. From ‘The Gravel Driveway’ to ‘The Downhill Coast’, the author communicates these moments in time as metaphors for living, and though falls, unexpected turns, and uphill climbs are inevitable, each trip we take is significant and meaningful.
We Are Owed by Ariana Brown
Reflections on the benefits of diversity is not uncommon in poetry collections. Ariana Brown’s We are Owed provides a deep dive into the challenging traditional conventions of identify and how we identify ourselves as humans in the world. This work wholly rejects nationalistic and conventional categorizations and instead seeks to increase an understanding of Black consciousness and identify, in light of our history and genealogical understanding of place. Where we are is characterized by where we’ve been. The author’s ruminations lend a voice to the question, “Who am I in this world?”.
By weaving her own experiences into the craft of poetry, Brown connects, not just with her own, but with other historical and diverse figures that presents a new understanding of identity and self-awareness that bridges gaps in our understanding of what it means to be human in context of our heritage and the places we stop to be along the way.
Lace and Pyrite by Ross Gay and Aimee Nezhukumatathil
Lace and Pyrite: Letters from Two Gardens is a poetry title by two poets: Ross Gay and Aimee Nezhukumatathil. This work seeks to comment on the seasonality and changes observed from the perspective of the author’s two respective gardens, each tended and cared for by fellow travelers. As life unfolds around them — each garden tracing cyclic paths of birth, growth, death, and rebirth – the observations therein lend to our understanding of the illusion of a static life and the changes we experience throughout our lived cycles.
Ukraine is a region that’s experienced deep change in their daily lives and routine. This collection seeks to capture the language of and circumstance of war, commemorating Ukraine’s global fight for democracy and human rights. This work is culturally significant and sets the reader before the perspective of a people. These people are in immediate transition, taking a path that most of us will thankfully never have to experience. You really feel the stories as they seek to translate the complexities and ineffability of war into words.
As She Appears by Shelley Wong
The next collection of poetry included is a debut work by poet, Shelley Wong, As She Appears. Through the lens of a queer woman of color, Wong provides impressions of her own journey. Deeply personal, tragic, and heartfelt, the poet celebrates and reflects on past relationships. Something most people can relate to. The poems showcase art as a means of processing the world and circumstance. This is also shown by her connection with the natural world. Each journey and encounter is a memory in eloquence and form. As the poet expresses her memories and personal experiences in a variety of settings and destinations.
Love and Wine by Alex Diaz
Love and Wine by Alex Diaz provides a captivating reflection on love. She shows how it manifests in romantic, friendship, familial, and self-love. In Diaz, we find a modern poetic voice. Furthermore she invites the reader to experience and recall past and present connections and the distance covered in between.
Absurd Palate by Alysa Levi-d’Ancona
Next we reach a destination, gathered at the table to ingest a feast of language. The poet invites us to partake in a progressive meal that spans themes, covering ‘overt appetites’ and ‘subverted expectations’. Upon each literary delight, the reader will resonate with a blend of poetry and fiction in ways that are fresh and satiating. Course after course, this culinary journey engages the reader and leaves us hungry for more.
For Now I’ll Just Be Okay .002 by Grace Gellatly
Lastly, For Now I’ll Just Be Okay .002 by Grace Gellatly charts a course toward healing and self-acceptance. This work tells a singular story of growing up, heartbreak, travel and disenchantment that offers a literary companion. Readers traverse toward their own journey to embrace themselves as they are. Regardless of where our physical bodies might travel, the ultimate goal of choosing to accept where we are in this moment is always worth the trip.
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