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What do we talk about when we talk about money? As the forty-four poets in this brilliant new anthology show, the answer is everything. From the impact of global economic crises to local tag sales, from the subversive effects of dark money on politics to the freedom granted by a summer job, from sweatshops where our clothes are produced to the malls where they are sold, this volume gets to the heart of Americans’ relationships to capital as only poetry can.
Editors Benjamin S. Grossberg and Clare Rossini selected poems to reflect broad themes of labor, history and economic forces, social equity, and the environment. In addition, they asked each poet to provide a brief prose comment to introduce their work. Some give broad statements on the nature of wealth in America today; others are intimate, offering insight into how life experiences inform their writing; still others reflect on the art of poetry itself and its unique power to speak to economic pressures of the moment.
Contributors include Mary Jo Bang, Xochiquetzal Candelaria, Alan Chazaro, Mark Doty, Denise Duhamel, Tony Hoagland, Yusef Komunyakaa, Dorianne Laux, Kimiko Hahn, Sharon Olds, George Perreault, Robert Pinsky, Minnie Bruce Pratt, Afaa Michael Weaver, David Wojahn, and others.
Clare Rossini and Benjamin S. Grossberg, Co-editors
Clare Rossini is Artist-in-Residence at Trinity College where she teaches creative writing and directs an outreach program in a core-city public school. Her books include Lingo, WInter Morning with Crow — winner of the Akron Poetry Prize — and Selections from the Claudia Poems.
Benjamin S. Grossberg is the Director of Creative Writing at the University of Hartford. His books include Space Traveler and Sweet Core Orchard, winner of a lambda literary award. His latest collection is My Husband Would.
Alan Chazaro is the author of This Is Not a Frank Ocean Cover Album (Black Lawrence Press, 2018) and Pinata Theory (Black Lawrence Press, 2020). A Lawrence Ferlinghetti Fellow from the University of San Francisco, his poems have appeared in Ninth Letter, San Francisco Chronicle, Puetro Del Sol, and Iron Horse Review.
Mark Doty’s nine books of poems include My Alexandria (University of Illinois, 1993), which won the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Fire to Fire: New and Selected Poems (Harper Perennial, 2009), winner of the National Book Award. His six volumes of nonfiction prose include What Is the Grass (W. W. Norton, 2020) and Dog Years (Harper Perennial, 2008), a New York Times bestseller. He’s taught at Columbia, NYU, Princeton, and Stanford. Currently Distinguished Professor at Rutgers, he lives in New York City.
Edward Hirsch, a MacArthur Fellow, has published ten books of poems, most recently Stranger by Night (2020) and The Living Fire: New and Selected Poems (2010), both from Knopf. He has also published five prose books, among them A Poet’s Glossary (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2014) and How to Read a Poem and Fall in Love with Poetry (Harcourt Brace, 1999), a national bestseller. His latest book is the anthology, 100 Poems to Break Your Heart (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2021). He started out working summer jobs as a bus boy, a soda fountain jerk, a garbage man, and a factory worker. He’s currently president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.
Yusef Komunyakaa’s Neon Vernacular: New and Selected Poems (Wesleyan University Press, 1994) won the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award and the Pulitzer Prize. His most recent collections of poetry include Testimony: A Tribute to Charlie Parker (Wesleyan University Press, 2013) and Emperor of Water Clocks (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2015). Everyday Mojo Songs of Earth: New and Selected Poems, 2001-2021 will appear this June. He served as a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 1999 to 2005 and currently is Distinguished Senior Poet in New York University’s graduate creative writing program.
Sharon Olds has received many awards for her work, including the inaugural San Francisco Poetry Center Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and, for her 2012 collection, Stags Leap (Knopf), the Pulitzer and T.S. Eliot Prizes. Her recent collections include Odes (Knopf, 2016) and Arias (Knopf, 2019), which was shortlisted for the Griffin Prize. She currently teaches in New York University’s graduate creative writing program.
A native of Detroit, Michigan, Crystal Williams is the author of four poetry collections, most recently Detroit as Barn (Lost Horse Press, 2014). Williams is an associate provost and professor of English at Boston University. She is also an advocate for diversity and equity in the arts and serves on multiple arts and culture boards.