Poetry that grapples with the intersection of natural and cultural crises.
In an age of record-breaking superstorms and environmental degradation, What Nature seeks—through poetry—to make sense of how we interact with and are influenced by nature.
Shifting its focus from what has already been lost to what lies ahead, What Nature rejects the sentimentality of traditional nature poetry. Instead, its texts expose and resist the global iniquities that create large-scale human suffering, a world where climate change disproportionately affects the poorest communities. The intersection of natural and cultural crises—like Standing Rock's fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline and the water crisis in Flint, Michigan—are confronted head on. These poems, lyric essays, and hybrid works grapple with political unrest, refugeeism, and resource exploitation, transforming the genre of ecopoetics.
ContributorsKaveh Akbar, Zaina Alsous, Desirée Alvarez, Rae Armantrout, Aase Berg, Kyle Booten, Jericho Brown, Kyce Bello, Kayleb Rae Candrilli, Jesús Castillo,, Abigail Chabitnoy,Adam Day, Camille T. Dungy, Noah Dversdall, Gyrðir Elíasson, Tracy Fuad, Carolyn Guinzio, Amanda Hawkins, Sheikha Helawy, Claire Hero, Brenda Hillman, Joan Kane, Douglas Kearney, Benjamín Naka-Hasebe Kingsley, Nam Le, Diana Keren Lee, Adrian Lurssen, Matt Massaia, Iréne Mathieu, Ted Mathys, Christopher Nelson, Kathy Nilsson, Greg Nissan, Elsbeth Pancrazi, Sarah Passino, Rowan Ricardo Phillips, Roger Reeves, Evelyn Reilly, Emelia Reuterfors, Mutsuo Takahashi, Brian Tierney, Alissa Valles, Nicole Walker, Ellen Welcker
"In time of crisis, we summon up our strength," wrote poet Muriel Rukeyser. This collection gathers poems—from the eve of the twenty-first century to the month following Trump's election—to mark a moment of political rupture, summoning the collective strength found in the languages of resistance and memory, subversion and declamation, struggle and hope. Poetry is a counterforce. We offer these poems to readers as Rukeyser did—"not walls, but human things, human faces."
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