Poetry

  • YEAR IN REVIEW

    Alta’s Best Poetry 2019

    - Works by West Coast poets Katie Peterson, Ishmael Reed, Luis J. Rodriguez, and Tennessee Reed reveal our shared humanity.
Bay Area–based poet Jane Hirshfield has also published two collections of essays.
CURT RICHTER
POETRY

Cold, Clear

Jane Hirshfield has been honored with the Poetry Center Book Award and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Academy of American Poets.

Poet Jane Hirshfield stopped writing for eight years to study at the San Francisco Zen Center.
POETRY

Paint

Jane Hirshfield is a Bay Area-based poet, essayist, and translator. Her newest book, Ledger: Poems, will be published in 2020. 

Oakland's Tennessee Reed is the author of six books of poetry.
POETRY

Like an Old Friend Whom You Had Given Up for Dead Rain Returns to Oakland

Tennessee Reed is the author of six books of poetry, including City Beautiful, Airborne, and Electric Chocolate.

Luis J. Rodriguez was poet laureate of Los Angeles from 2014 to 2016. He is also the author of eight books of poetry.
ARLENE MEJORADO
POETRY

Make a Poem Cry

Luis J. Rodriguez was poet laureate of Los Angeles from 2014 to 2016. He’s the author of eight books of poetry and the founding editor of Tia Chucha Press.

This poem by Katie Peterson appears in her book A Piece of Good News. Peterson’s honors include the Howard Mumford Jones Prize, the New Issues Poetry Prize, and the Rilke Prize.
YOUNG SUH
POETRY

‘Paul Bowles’

This poem by Katie Peterson appears in her book A Piece of Good News. Peterson's honors include the Howard Mumford Jones Prize, the New Issues Poetry Prize, and the Rilke Prize.

Acclaimed poet Ishmael Reed is based in Oakland.
NOAM GALAI/GETTY IMAGES
POETRY

‘Pluto and Luca Walk Into a Bar’

A new poem by Ishmael Reed. His latest honors include the Alberto Dubito Award for International Poetry and the AUDELCO award for theatre.

POETRY

Alta Poetry 2018

These works by California poets capture particular, private moments of life in the Golden State