View your shopping cart.

Banner Message

Please note that online availability does not reflect stock in store!

For immediate knowledge of what we have in stock, please give us a call at 773-293-2665 or email us at words@bookcellarinc.com

Thank you for your patience and grace during the busy holiday season! 

Poetry

After Party

After Party

$15.00
More Info
A truly moving book. --John Ashbery

Jana Prikryl's The After Party journeys across borders and eras, from cold war Central Europe to present-day New York City, from ancient Rome to New World suburbs, constantly testing the lingua francas we negotiate to know ourselves. These poems disclose the tensions in our inherited identities and showcase Prikryl's ambitious experimentation with style.

"Thirty Thousand Islands," the second half of the collection, presents some forty linked poems that incorporate numerous voices. Rooted in one place that fragments into many places--the remote shores of Lake Huron in Canada, a region with no natural resources aside from its beauty--these poems are an elegy that speaks beyond grief.

Penetrating, vital, and visionary, The After Party marks the arrival of an extraordinary new talent.

After The Reunion

After The Reunion

$16.95
More Info
After the Reunion is an intensely lyrical collection of love poems and elegies from "the most expansive and moving poet to come out of the American Midwest since James Wright," as Marilyn Hacker has described him. In these quiet, powerful, and eloquent poems, David Baker explores the kinship of love to loss, discovering that each is an inevitable component of the other. The final movement of the book is a unification of these two modes and becomes a celebration of continuities, kinships, and renewals.
After Tomorrow the Days Disappear

After Tomorrow the Days Disappear

$19.95
More Info

Translated from the Persian by Rebecca Gould

Hasan Sijzi, also known as Amir Hasan Sijzi Dehlavi, is considered the originator of the Indo-Persian ghazal, a poetic form that endures to this day--from the legacy of Hasan's poetic descendent, Hafez, to contemporary Anglophone poets such as John Hollander, Maxine Kumin, Agha Shahid Ali, and W. S. Merwin.

As with other Persian poets, Hasan worked within a highly regulated set of poetic conventions that brought into relief the interpenetration of apparent opposites--metaphysical and material, mysterious and quotidian, death and desire, sacred and profane, fleeting time and eternity. Within these strictures, he crafted a poetics that blended Sufi Islam with non-Muslim Indic traditions. Of the Persian poets practiced the ghazal, Hafez and Rumi are best known to Western readers, but their verse represents only a small fraction of a rich tradition. This collection reveals the geographical range of the literature while introducing an Indian voice that will find a place on reader's bookshelves alongside better known Iranian names.

Afternoon Masala

Afternoon Masala

$16.95
More Info
2014 cowinner, Miller Williams Arkansas Poetry Prize
Afterswarm

Afterswarm

$15.95
More Info
"You fetch / the daily things. You go on. There's nothing else to do."

In Afterswarm, Margot Schilpp reveals and revels in the deep comfort we take in the common objects, people, and circumstances of our lives. She draws our attention back to those that have grown invisible in their familiarity, asking us to pause and weigh the significance of what we regularly encounter. The poems in this volume question and insist, return and twist, and ultimately point us toward the grace we can find in what's often overlooked.

"Afterswarm is a collection of powerful, sometimes kaleidoscopic meditations on the human condition in a universe akin to Stephen Crane's, one which has 'no sense of obligation' for our existence. The trials of mutability, heartbreak, alienation, and mundanity are met with stoical tenacity (and, occasionally, wry humor) while 'shimmerings' of beauty and love are 'syncopated against loss.' These poems strike deep. And Schilpp's unembellished eloquence, musician's ear, and eye for evocative detail energize every page of this extraordinary book."--William Trowbridge, author of Vanishing Point

Against Forgetting: Twentieth Century Poetry of Witness

Against Forgetting: Twentieth Century Poetry of Witness

$27.95
More Info
This landmark anthology, the first of its kind, takes its impulse from the words of Bertolt Brecth: "In the dark times, will there also be singing? Yes, there will be singing. About the dark times." Bearing witness to extremity - whether of war, torture, exile or repression - the volume encompasses more than 140 poems from five continents, over the span of this century from the Armenian genocide to Tiananmen Square.
Against Heaven

Against Heaven

$16.00
More Info

Winner of the Academy of American Poets First Book Award, selected by Claudia Rankine.

Kemi Alabi's transcendent debut reimagines the poetic and cultural traditions from which it is born, troubling the waters of some of our country's central and ordained fictions--those mythic politics of respectability, resilience, and redemption. Instead of turning to a salvation that has been forced upon them, Alabi turns to the body and the earth as sites of paradise defined by the pleasure and possibility of Black, queer fugitivity. Through tender love poems, righteous prayers, and vital provocations, we see the colonizers we carry within ourselves being laid to rest.

Against Heaven is a praise song made for the flames of a burning empire--a freedom dream that shapeshifts into boundless multiplicities for the wounds made in the name of White supremacy and its gods. Alabi has written an astonishing collection of magnificent range, commanding the full spectrum of the Black, queer spirit's capacity for magic, love, and ferocity in service of healing--the highest power there is.

Against Silence

Against Silence

$16.00
More Info

An urgent new collection from the winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award and "one of the undisputed master poets of our time" (Craig Morgan Teicher, NPR)

Words, voices reek of the worlds from which they
emerge: different worlds, each with its all but palpable
aroma, its parameters, limitations, promise.

Words--there is a gap, nonetheless always
and forever, between words and the world--

slip, slide, are imprecise, BLIND, perish.
-
Set up a situation, --
. . . then reveal an abyss.

For more than fifty years, Frank Bidart has given voice to the inner self, to the depths of his own psyche and the unforgettable characters that populate his poems. In Against Silence, the Pulitzer Prize winner's eleventh collection of poetry, Bidart writes of the cycles we cannot escape and the feelings we cannot forget. Our history is not a tabula rasa but a repeating, refining story of love and hate, of words spoken and old cruelties enacted. Moving among the dead and the living, the figures of his life and of his past, Bidart calls reality forth--with nothing settled and nothing forgotten, we must speak.

Against Silence: Poems

Against Silence: Poems

$25.00
More Info

An urgent new collection from the winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award and "one of the undisputed master poets of our time" (Craig Morgan Teicher, NPR)

Words, voices reek of the worlds from which they
emerge: different worlds, each with its all but palpable
aroma, its parameters, limitations, promise.

Words--there is a gap, nonetheless always
and forever, between words and the world--

slip, slide, are imprecise, BLIND, perish.
-
Set up a situation, --
. . . then reveal an abyss.

For more than fifty years, Frank Bidart has given voice to the inner self, to the depths of his own psyche and the unforgettable characters that populate his poems. In Against Silence, the Pulitzer Prize winner's eleventh collection of poetry, Bidart writes of the cycles we cannot escape and the feelings we cannot forget. Our history is not a tabula rasa but a repeating, refining story of love and hate, of words spoken and old cruelties enacted. Moving among the dead and the living, the figures of his life and of his past, Bidart calls reality forth--with nothing settled and nothing forgotten, we must speak.

Against the Current

Against the Current

$16.00
More Info
The poems in Against the Current expose a mind moving fast as water. Tedi López Mills renders a river as a cool but contaminated space, propelling its detritus through a hybrid rural/urban zone that is inhabited by allegory and rife with collision. As the poems swim upstream, they accrue the impurities and complicities of memory, embodied in the central figure of the brother who is also the other. Wendy Burk reproduces the baroque, occasionally frenetic rhythms of the abecedarian original with lucidity, in these poems that underscore that Mexico is defined by physical and philosophical contrast.
Against Translation

Against Translation

$18.00
More Info
We often ask ourselves what gets lost in translation--not just between languages, but in the everyday trade-offs between what we experience and what we are able to say about it. But the visionary poems of this collection invite us to consider: what is loss, in translation? Writing at the limits of language--where "the signs loosen, fray, and drift"--Alan Shapiro probes the startling complexity of how we confront absence and the ephemeral, the heartbreak of what once wasn't yet and now is no longer, of what (like racial prejudice and historical atrocity) is omnipresent and elusive. Through poems that are fine-grained and often quiet, Shapiro tells of subtle bereavements: a young boy is shamed for the first time for looking "girly"; an ailing old man struggles to visit his wife in a nursing home; or a woman dying of cancer watches her friends enjoy themselves in her absence. Throughout, this collection traverses rather than condemns the imperfect language of loss--moving against the current in the direction of the utterly ineffable.
Age of the Poets

Age of the Poets

$24.95
More Info
The Age of the Poets revisits the age-old problem of the relation between literature and philosophy, arguing against both Plato and Heidegger's famous arguments. Philosophy neither has to ban the poets from the republic nor abdicate its own powers to the sole benefit of poetry or art. Instead, it must declare the end of what Badiou names the "age of the poets," which stretches from Hölderlin to Celan. Drawing on ideas from his first publication on the subject, "The Autonomy of the Aesthetic Process," Badiou offers an illuminating set of readings of contemporary French prose writers, giving us fascinating insights into the theory of the novel while also accounting for the specific position of literature between science and ideology.
Aimless Love

Aimless Love

$16.00
More Info
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"America's favorite poet."--The Wall Street Journal


From the two-term Poet Laureate of the United States Billy Collins comes his first volume of new and selected poems in twelve years. Aimless Love combines fifty new poems with generous selections from his four most recent books--Nine Horses, The Trouble with Poetry, Ballistics, and Horoscopes for the Dead. Collins's unmistakable voice, which brings together plain speech with imaginative surprise, is clearly heard on every page, reminding us how he has managed to enrich the tapestry of contemporary poetry and greatly expand its audience. His work is featured in top literary magazines such as The New Yorker, Poetry, and The Atlantic, and he sells out reading venues all across the country. Appearing regularly in The Best American Poetry series, his poems appeal to readers and live audiences far and wide and have been translated into more than a dozen languages. By turns playful, ironic, and serious, Collins's poetry captures the nuances of everyday life while leading the reader into zones of inspired wonder. In the poet's own words, he hopes that his poems "begin in Kansas and end in Oz." Touching on the themes of love, loss, joy, and poetry itself, these poems showcase the best work of this "poet of plenitude, irony, and Augustan grace" (The New Yorker).

Envoy

Go, little book,
out of this house and into the world,

carriage made of paper rolling toward town
bearing a single passenger
beyond the reach of this jittery pen
and far from the desk and the nosy gooseneck lamp.

It is time to decamp,
put on a jacket and venture outside,
time to be regarded by other eyes,
bound to be held in foreign hands.

So off you go, infants of the brain,
with a wave and some bits of fatherly advice:

stay out as late as you like,
don't bother to call or write,
and talk to as many strangers as you can.

Praise for Aimless Love

"[Billy Collins] is able, with precious few words, to make me cry. Or laugh out loud. He is a remarkable artist. To have such power in such an abbreviated form is deeply inspiring."--J. J. Abrams, The New York Times Book Review

"His work is poignant, straightforward, usually funny and imaginative, also nuanced and surprising. It bears repeated reading and reading aloud."--The Plain Dealer

"Collins has earned almost rock-star status. . . . He knows how to write layered, subtly witty poems that anyone can understand and appreciate--even those who don't normally like poetry. . . . The Collins in these pages is distinctive, evocative, and knows how to make the genre fresh and relevant."--The Christian Science Monitor

"Collins's new poems contain everything you've come to expect from a Billy Collins poem. They stand solidly on even ground, chiseled and unbreakable. Their phrasing is elegant, the humor is alive, and the speaker continues to stroll at his own pace through the plainness of American life."--The Daily Beast

"[Collins's] poetry presents simple observations, which create a shared experience between Collins and his readers, while further revealing how he takes life's everyday humdrum experiences and makes them vibrant."--The Times Leader

Aimless Love

Aimless Love

$26.00
More Info
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

"America's favorite poet."--The Wall Street Journal


From the two-term Poet Laureate of the United States Billy Collins comes his first volume of new and selected poems in twelve years. Aimless Love combines fifty new poems with generous selections from his four most recent books--Nine Horses, The Trouble with Poetry, Ballistics, and Horoscopes for the Dead. Collins's unmistakable voice, which brings together plain speech with imaginative surprise, is clearly heard on every page, reminding us how he has managed to enrich the tapestry of contemporary poetry and greatly expand its audience. His work is featured in top literary magazines such as The New Yorker, Poetry, and The Atlantic, and he sells out reading venues all across the country. Appearing regularly in The Best American Poetry series, his poems appeal to readers and live audiences far and wide and have been translated into more than a dozen languages. By turns playful, ironic, and serious, Collins's poetry captures the nuances of everyday life while leading the reader into zones of inspired wonder. In the poet's own words, he hopes that his poems "begin in Kansas and end in Oz." Touching on the themes of love, loss, joy, and poetry itself, these poems showcase the best work of this "poet of plenitude, irony, and Augustan grace" (The New Yorker).

Envoy

Go, little book,
out of this house and into the world,

carriage made of paper rolling toward town
bearing a single passenger
beyond the reach of this jittery pen
and far from the desk and the nosy gooseneck lamp.

It is time to decamp,
put on a jacket and venture outside,
time to be regarded by other eyes,
bound to be held in foreign hands.

So off you go, infants of the brain,
with a wave and some bits of fatherly advice:

stay out as late as you like,
don't bother to call or write,
and talk to as many strangers as you can.

Praise for Aimless Love

"[Billy Collins] is able, with precious few words, to make me cry. Or laugh out loud. He is a remarkable artist. To have such power in such an abbreviated form is deeply inspiring."--J. J. Abrams, The New York Times Book Review

"His work is poignant, straightforward, usually funny and imaginative, also nuanced and surprising. It bears repeated reading and reading aloud."--The Plain Dealer

"Collins has earned almost rock-star status. . . . He knows how to write layered, subtly witty poems that anyone can understand and appreciate--even those who don't normally like poetry. . . . The Collins in these pages is distinctive, evocative, and knows how to make the genre fresh and relevant."--The Christian Science Monitor

"Collins's new poems contain everything you've come to expect from a Billy Collins poem. They stand solidly on even ground, chiseled and unbreakable. Their phrasing is elegant, the humor is alive, and the speaker continues to stroll at his own pace through the plainness of American life."--The Daily Beast

"[Collins's] poetry presents simple observations, which create a shared experience between Collins and his readers, while further revealing how he takes life's everyday humdrum experiences and makes them vibrant."--The Times Leader

Ain't I a Woman

Ain't I a Woman

$7.99
More Info
Spanning the centuries from Sappho's Greece to tenth-century Chile to Zindziswa Mandela's twentieth-century South Africa, the voices of these women poets express themes of love, injustice, motherhood and loss, and the oppressions of race and sex. The sequence of the poems moves from youth to old age, and they bear witness to the triumphs as well as the pain and frustration of women in many times and in many places.

Ilona Linthewaite began gathering this collection several years ago, initially for a theatrical performance. Here, in this unique exchange between women of many races, affirming their differences and what they have in common, are more than 150 poems which assert the black abolitionist Sojourner Truth's challenge, "Ain't I a Woman!"

Al Que Quiere

Al Que Quiere

$14.95
More Info
Published in 1917 by The Four Seas Press, Al Que Quiere! was William Carlos Williams's breakthrough book and contains some of his best-loved poems ("Tract," "Apology," "El Hombre," "Danse Russe," "January Morning," and "Smell!"), as well as a Whitmanesque concluding long poem, "The Wanderer," that anticipates his epic masterpiece Paterson. Al Que Quiere! is the culmination of an experimental period for Williams that included his translations from Spanish. The Spanish epigraph of Al Que Quiere! is from the short story "El hombre que parecía un caballo" ("The Man Who Resembled a Horse"), by the Guatemalan author Rafael Arévalo Martínez. This centennial edition contains Williams's translation of the story, as well as his commentary from a book of conversations, I Wanted to Write a Poem, on the individual poems of Al Que Quiere!
Albertine Workout

Albertine Workout

$10.95
More Info
The Albertine Workout contains fifty-nine paragraphs, with appendices, summarizing Anne Carson's research on Albertine, the principal love interest of Marcel in Proust's Á la recherche du temps perdu.
Alien vs Predator

Alien vs Predator

$18.00
More Info
The debut collection of a poet whose savage, hilarious work has already received extraordinary notice.

Since his poems first began to appear in the pages of The New Yorker and Poetry, there has been a lot of excited talk about the fresh and inventive work of Michael Robbins. Equal parts hip- hop, John Berryman, and capitalism seeking death and not finding it, Robbins's poems are strange, wonderful, wild, and completely unlike anything else being written today. As allusive as the Cantos, as aggressive as a circular saw, this debut collection will offend none but the virtuous, and is certain to receive an enormous amount of attention.