Tuesday, May 8, 2012


Do you know this anthol:

  • Contemporary American Poetry, 8th Edition
  • A. Poulin, Jr. - Late of State University of New York, College at Brockport
  • Michael Waters - Salisbury University
  • ISBN-10: 0618527850  ISBN-13: 9780618527854 
  • 720 Pages  Paperback 

Contemporary American Poetry, the 8th Edition, published 2006 by Wadsworth Publishing Company. 

The paperback list price is $119.95, though you can get it on Amazon for less.

One hundred and nineteen dollars and ninety-five cents.

Its editors are listed as A. Poulin, Jr. and Michael Waters, though Poulin's been dead well over a decade now, the last edition he did was I think the 6th, published in 1996.  Waters has edited the last two editions by himself (though he may have retained some of Poulin's picks).

A new version of this anthology used to be published every five years, but no 9th edition has appeared, and this 8th from 2006 is still in print (I copied the image above from the Wadsworth online catalog just minutes ago—)

I wonder if this is still read in schools today—Are any higher-ed courses in poetry using this anthology?  

The 7th edition came out in 2001. 

And I was in the 7th edition!—

Yes, there I was, right after the Pulitzer Prize winning poets Kinnell and Kizer,

and right before the Pulitzer Prize winning poets Komunyakaa and Kumin,

there was the Knotthead with several pages of pokey little poems,

and everybody who looked at that suspicious insert surely said:

'Now how the fuck did that weako sneak in there between those REAL poets, those PULITZER poets?'

However it happened, I was in the 7th edition. For half a decade, I was part of "Contemporary American Poetry."

I was included! After so many years of excludedness, I was in. In the 7th edition.

But I ain't in the 8th. 

Anyway, there I was, for one bright shining hour (okay, five years), right in the midst of those authentic poets as if I was one of them somehow.

It was like a TV reality show (American Poetry Idol) where they pluck some schmuck out of nowhere

and suddenly he's sharing the screen with allstars whose plaque in the sidewalk he's not fit to lick.


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