search by author or title

The Best American Poetry 2022

Guest Editor, Matthew Zapruder


David Lehman (View Bio)
Hardcover: Scribner, 2022.

The Best American Poetry 2022

Since 1988, The Best American Poetry series has been “one of the mainstays of the poetry publication world” (Academy of American Poets). Each volume presents a selection of the year’s most brilliant, striking, and innovative poems, with comments from the poets themselves lending insight into their work.

The Best American Poetry 2022 guest editor Matthew Zapruder, whose own poems are “for everyone, everywhere...democratic in [their] insights and feelings” (NPR), has selected the seventy-five new poems that represent American poetry today at its most dynamic. Chosen from print and online magazines, from the popular to the little-known, the selection is sure to capture the attention of both Best American Poetry loyalists and newcomers to the series.

The series and guest editors contribute valuable introductory essays that illuminate the current state of American poetry.

"Want to read more contemporary poetry but don’t know where to begin? For expert curation and variety, you can’t do better than The Best American Poetry 2022, edited this year by Matthew Zapruder. These 75 poems are arranged alphabetically from Aria Aber to Jenny Zhang, including Terrance Hayes, Sharon Olds, Louise Glück, Diane Seuss, Ada Limón and others I recognize and many I don’t. (One obvious omission is Zapruder himself, but series editor David Lehman singles out one of his great poems in the foreword.) Zapruder strikes just the right note in his introduction. 'If you are reading this and don’t read much poetry, or feel uncertain in relation to it, you are more than welcome here,' he writes. 'Please know that I chose these poems thinking of you. I, too, feel uncertain, unsure of what poetry is for, especially during eerie, frightening, and confusing times.' He finds encouragement—and motivation—in fine writing. 'A hope that starts out as a tentative, inchoate feeling can, in a poem, be dreamed forth, envisioned as a concrete possibility; only then, when we start to imagine how things could change, can we begin to act to make it so,' he writes. 'Poems remind us that, at our core, we share something deep.'" — Ron Charles, The Washington Post