Top Women Making Their Debut Into Poetry- 2023

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Top Female Debut Poets – 2023

In March, we celebrate National Women’s History Month. These top female debut poets of 2023 are definitely making history with powerful and moving poetry collections that will make you feel proud to be a woman.

They hail from all different backgrounds, topics and poetry styles, which means there’s something for everyone. You will see heart, rage, intelligence, artistic passion, and maybe a couple new themes you never thought to review. Let’s show our support to the courage and strength it takes for these women to make their debut into the poetry world the #lisquad loves.

We tip our metaphorical hat and open our subjective minds as we dive into these top female debut poets of 2023.

Victoria Adukwei Bulley – Quiet: Poems 

Victoria Adukwei Bulley was raised in Essex, England with a heritage of Ghanaian. She had a dream of being a film-maker and writer.  Pursuing this dream, she became an alumna of the Barbican Young Poets and recipient of an Eric Gregory Award. Her work led her to many journeys including being able to hold residencies in the United States, Brazil, and in London at the Victoria and Albert Museum. She is the recipient of a Techne scholarship for doctoral research at Royal Holloway, University of London.

Her debut book, Quiet: Poems, transitions from rage to tenderness in the search for quietness in a world full of noise. These poems dwell on ideas of black interiority, intimacy, and selfhood, and they celebrate as fiercely as they mourn. 
Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Victoria Adukwei Bulley

Does the K have a temper? Perhaps it should

because it sounds like a can’t. Switch the a to 

a u and it sounds like washing your mouth out with  

Listerine. This is a litany against the commonwealth


Maya J. Sorini –The Boneheap In The Lion’s Den

Maya J. Sorini is making her debut in poetry but she has a unique background for a poet. She received her B.A. in Chemistry from Washington University in St. Louis while engaging in clinical trauma surgery research. After finishing her undergraduate degree, Maya pursued a Master of Science in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University. With her background in science and medicine, her writing has a different tactical but meaningful approach But she also shares her side of things when dealing with trauma and what she has witnessed.

Her first collection, The Boneheap in the Lion’s Den, has already won the 2023 Press 53 Award for Poetry, and will be on shelves April 2023. Maya’s poetry focuses on the experience of trauma from multiple angles: from the viewpoint of the victim, the survivor, the caregiver, the physician, the family, and even the perpetrator

What It’s Like Off Shift

The ghost was in my bed again last night

I sang a lullaby, I rocked, she breathed

I held her to me, and she stayed awhile.

Gabriella Bates – Judas Goat: Poems

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Gabrielle BatesGabrielle Bates’s love for poetry has been prominent for years as she’s created a successful podcast, The Poet Salon. There she is a cohost and has brought on tens poets to interview and speak on relevant topics. There are currently two seasons available to listen to. Gabrielle has appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, American Poetry Review, and other publications.

The Judas Goat: Poems brings intimate relationships to the forefront and hides nothings. She uses animals to translate this by comparing leading sheep to the slaughter but the leader survives. In this collection there are 40 poems and each poem transcends you to a deep space that may have never been surfaced thought about obedience, violence, and relationships within womanhood.

The Lucky Ones by Gabriella Bates

Jennifer Rose Welch – Cheeky Poetry 

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Cheeky Poetry

This female debut poet is a more unique selection, and definitely an interesting one. Jennifer Rose Welch is a London based choreographer, theatre company director, published author and performance artist. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in Spanish and French and has experience of traveling throughout South America where she also worked as an English teacher in Buenos Aires.

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Jennifer Rose Welch

Jennifer merged her love of poetry, script, and movement into one where she express all three. She founded her dance studio an theatre, Cheeky Poetry which she named her poetry book after. In August 2021, Jen married her passions of language, story-telling and dance together, resulting in the foundation of her own theatre company, Cheeky Poetry.

Cheeky Poetry is lighthearted and definitely hits the funny bone. Jennifer takes daily or relatable life situations and turns them on their head with rhymes and limericks. If you’re looking for something to eliminate guilt, lift up your spirits, and laugh off life’s misfortunes, then this is the collection for you.

Bethany Breitland – Fire Index: Poems

Fire IndexBethany Breitland was born in northern Indiana. Writing about the people she has come across on her journey through this intense and crazy world. She speaks to multiple walks of life including – cult members, child-mothers, blue collar workers and white collar careerists. Living in all areas on the United States, she’s worked her way through a masters degree and became an educator. She has strong passions as an activists and for over 20 years worked to help women’s rights and the LGBTQ community. She has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.


Maggie Millner – Couplets: A Love Story 

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Maggie MillnerThis female debut poet for 2023 is topping the charts. Maggie Millner is a poet whose work has appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Poetry, Kenyon Review, Bomb, and The Nation, among other publications. She is a lecturer at Yale and a senior editor at The Yale Review. Top Female Debut Poets - 2023 Couplets

Most fans of poetry may have already seen this book. Though just released in early 2023, it’s already setting new trends and records all over the world.  Maggie transforms her couplets into easy reading short stories that transport you into a comforting space. With self doubt to self assurance, methodical day to day tasks with a new light, are shown throughout her debut book. You will see snippets into her own life in New York City where she lives with her boyfriend and her cat. 



I became myself.

I became myself.

No, I always was myself.
There’s no such person as myself.

I wouldn’t have to turn my eye
inward, I thought, if I could train my eye

on him—the one I loved.
But I was wrong. My eye loved

everything it fell upon.
And then one day it fell upon

Sarah Audsley – Landlock X: Poems

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Sarah AudsleySarah Audsley is a Korean American adoptee raised in rural Vermont. Her work appears in New England Review, The Cortland Review, Four Way Review, The Massachusetts Review, Tupelo Quarterly, Pleiades, and elsewhere. A graduate of the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College and a member of The Starlings Collective.

Audsley’s collection of Landlocked X By examines the consequences of her international transracial adoptee experience. Though her deep dive of thoughts end up finding more questions than solid answers. Employing a variety of poetic forms, she points out the fact she was plucked from the belonging to the rural landscape only to be placed in a similar setting but within a new country.

Still Life With Watermelon Seeds, Mannequin By Sarah Audsley

Omotara James – Song Of My Softening

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Omotora JamesAlong with Song Of My Softening, Omotara James has also written the chapbook Daughter Tongue, selected by African Poetry Book Fund, in collaboration with Akashic Books, for the 2018 New Generation African Poets Box Set. She is a fellow of Lambda Literary and Cave Canem Foundation. Born in Britain, she is the daughter of Nigerian and Trinidadian immigrants and currently lives in New York City.

I. Mama Wata

The saliva seeps from the glands at the base of my tongue the way the earth rejects the rain after, (or worse)
during the flood.

Pursed lips seal in the fluid. My tongue womb-ly like a baby


further from consciousness back into the amnio.
is a warning.


Jessica E. Johnson – Metabolics

Top Female Debut Poets 2023 - Metabolics Poems
Jessica Jessica may be new to poetry but she’s a veteran in nonfiction and essay writing. Her work has appeared in the Paris Review, Harvard Review, Poetry Northwest, Prairie Schooner, River Teeth, and Tin House, and many more. Her chapbook In Absolutes We Seek Each Other was an Oregon Book Award finalist.

Jessica uses her experience in nonfiction to channel that in Metabolics. She uses technology and almost a science-fiction feel to showcase the movement between change and balance. She speaks of a family in Oregon being raised in a contemporary style bringing up an environmental and climate change concerns. From speaking to matters as simple as kombucha to dietary changes and screen time throughout the day.

These Top Female Debut Poets of 2023 are making big waves in the industry and we can’t wait to see what they write next in their second set of collections.


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