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The Best American Poetry 2018

Guest Editor, Dana Gioia


David Lehman (View Bio)
Hardcover: Scribner, 2018.

The Best American Poetry 2018

Celebrating thirty years, the 2018 edition of The Best American Poetry collects the most significant poems of the year, chosen by a distinguished poet. The guest editor for 2018, Dana Gioia, has an unconventional poetic background. Gioia has published five volumes of poetry, served as the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts, and currently sits as the Poet Laureate of California, but he is also a graduate of Stanford Business School and was once a Vice President at General Foods. He has studied opera and is a published librettist, in addition to his prolific work in critical essay writing and editing literary anthologies. Having lived several lives, Gioia brings an insightful, varied, eclectic eye to this year’s Best American Poetry.

With his classic essay “Can Poetry Matter?”, originally run in The Atlantic in 1991, Gioia considered whether there is a place for poetry to be a part of modern American mainstream culture. Decades later, the debate continues, but The Best American Poetry 2018 stands as evidence that poetry is very much present, relevant, and finding new readers.

"The poems, ordered alphabetically by author, have a wonderful cohesion and flow, as if each contributes to a larger narrative about life today." — The Washington Post

"A ‘best’ anthology that really lives up to its title." — Chicago Tribune

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