Deaf Republic – Ilya Kaminsky
A simply astonishing work that both narrates and embodies its central concept. One of the finest books I’ve read in years – finish it in one sitting, and then immediately start over again.
Eunoia – Christian Bök
The standard for anyone seeking to find the balance between exhaustive Conceptualism and ‘beautiful thinking’. Here, Bök outdoes Oulipean experiments with the lipogram, and simultaneously weaves myth, food, sea voyages, and treatises on writing itself, all under nearly unbelievable constraints.
I CAN’T WAIT FOR THE WENDING – Wayne Holloway-Smith
A limited-edition run of 350 copies, so grab one if you see it. Printed on unbound cards, presented in a cardstock sleeve, Holloway’s book is a masterpiece of dry humour about a topsy-turvy world where serendipity feels normal – the looseleaf presentation adds to the sense of a world ‘out of order’.
Throaty Wipes – Susan Holbrook
Whenever I need to remember to have fun, I reach for this book. It’s also a reminder that play is serious business, and these poems never fail to teach me new ways of seeing language (instructors out there – show your students these poems!)
Threads – Sandeep Parmar, Nisha Ramayya and Bhanu Kapil
Part essay, part memoir, part magic – I’m cheating here, because you should go and get everything by all three of these incisive, powerful, and generous thinker/poets.
NASSER HUSSAIN is a Lecturer in Creative Writing and Literature (Leeds Beckett University, UK), author of SKY WRI TEI NGS (Coach House Books 2018)