New Poetry to Read in the Summer Sun

little infinite poetry summer reading list

New collections to throw in your bag for a sunny afternoon.

What is better than sitting out on a nice day enjoying a bit of poetry? Sometimes you just have to take a moment, or two, or a lot, and just relax with a beautiful poem.

Here are a few collections that you should have in your poetry library. Each book is unique. From the love poems of F. S. Yousaf to the politically charged poems of Alli Warren, there is a little bit of everything on this list.

Dear Girl, by Aija Mayrock

Dear Girl, by Aija Mayrock

Spoken-word performer Aija Mayrock’s debut poetry collection takes readers on a journey from silence, wounds, healing, and resilience. Mayrock writes of finding truth in silence and learning how to speak up for themselves. While this is Mayrock’s first collection of poetry, she has another book, The Survival Guide to Bullying, she wrote after being bullied in school. This collection is described as a love letter to the sisterhood.

Savage Pageant, by Jessica Q. Stark

Savage Pageant, by Jessica Q. Stark

Through a series of documentary poems, Jessica Q. Stark takes readers through the history of a defunct Hollywood zoo called Jungleland. Before it closed, the zoo held show animals. While diving into the history of this abandoned location, Stark looks at the American ties to celebrity culture, racist taxonomies, mistreatment of animals, and ecological violence. This collection shows how we like to leave out the dark parts of our past by controlling the narrative. But the ghosts of the past are always present ready to shine a light into those not-so tidy corners of history.

Little Hill, by Alli Warren

Written in seven long poems, Little Hill examines our present and the politically charged moments we find ourselves in. Taking on the topics of gender, love, inequality, resistance, and capitalism, these poems are both energetic and contemplative. They will have you questioning your ideas of these topics while also invoking a sense of activism. Alli Warren shows readers how to live and love in the 21st century, without ignoring the struggles of the time.

I Hope You Stay, by Courtney Peppernell

I Hope You Stay, by Courtney Peppernell

The time after a break up can be some of the darkest moments. It might be hard to even consider putting yourself out there and trying to find love again. This collection of poetry is here to help us through those universal, but uniquely personal times. Courtney Peppernell’s newest collection is just as moving as her previous collections, but this one specifically wants us all to remember the resilience and hope we need to have to work through heartache. Though it might be hard to find the light in the darkness, there will be peace and the sun will rise.

Sincerely, by F. S. Yousaf

Sincerely, by F. S. Yousaf

Imagine trying to find just the right words to express how much you love someone. You might think that a poet would have an advantage, but for F. S. Yousaf, he was having a hard time. So, when he searched for just the right words to ask his girlfriend to marry him, he went back to the poems and letters he had written to her in the past. Inspiration struck, and not just for his proposal. Sincerely is a collection of poems inspired by the positivity, hope, and true love that he found in his old writings. These poems are truly love poems at heart.

We Inherit What the Fires Left, by William Evans

Lived experiences become inheritances in We Inherit What the Fires Left. This collection of poems goes far beyond the emotion, wisdom, and eloquence of William Evan’s voice and looks at the struggles of being a black man raising a daughter in a white suburb. While the beautiful poems of Evans with his daughter might lull you into a sense of serenity, many of the other poems take a hard look at generational trauma. People don’t just inherit physical objects, but they inherit the burdens of legacy. People inherit the price that their ancestors paid to make it possible for them to have a better life, especially for marginalized people. But while Evans looks at inherited pain, he also offers words of hope showing that resilience can grow in the face of prejudice.

Guillotine: Poems, by Eduardo C Corral

Guillotine: Poems, by Eduardo C Corral

Following the stories of immigrants, border patrol agents, and scorned lovers, Guillotine asks what it means to be unwanted or renounced. Eduardo C Corral shows readers the desert landscapes that migrants cross to find a new place to put down roots. Along the way, we begin to understand the need for survival and the need for love. But what makes these poems truly unique is Corral’s way of integrating both Spanish and English. It makes every line even more beautiful.

If you find yourself in need of some new poems, then be sure to grab these collections. So, grab yourself an iced coffee, find a spot in the sun, and read some great poems.

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Featured photo by Nguyen Thu Hoai on Unsplash

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