5 February 2024 Releases That Will Make You Fall Deeper in Love with Poetry

February might be a short month, but with these poetry releases, it also promises to be sweet. This month’s releases are all about underrepresented voices making themselves heard, poetry with a clear sense of place, and visceral poems that confront the physical reality of living in a body. This month, poetry promises to illustrate the wide boundlessness of the world around us, as well as the depths of the internal world that we always occupy. Don’t miss these five stand-out titles.


Glitter City by Bonnie Jill Emanuel 

Release date: Feb. 5


Glitter City is the debut poetry collection from Bonnie Jill Emanuel, a rising poet whose work has appeared in American Poetry Review, Mid-American Review, Colorado Review, and other top literary journals. Within its pages, she takes the reader through Detroit, Brooklyn, and many cities and countrysides and everywhere in between, as she traces the geography of her life and mines the emotional resonance of these vivid, juxtaposed settings. 


Essential Queer Voices of U.S. Poetry, edited by Christopher Nelson

Release date: Feb. 6


A necessary and urgent poetry anthology, Essential Queer Voices of U.S. Poetry aims to contrast the stereotypes and single stories that queer writers often face, instead giving voice to the diversity of their lives, experiences, and writing styles. Edited by award-winning poet and writer Christopher Nelson and praised by Pulitzer Prize recipient Diane Suess—who described her experience of reading the anthology as a “re-awakening”—this anthology spotlights the intersectionalities in the queer community, bringing together writers of different backgrounds, ages, locales, class identities, and more. Readers can expect to encounter work by beloved, established poets like Eileen Myles and Danez Smith, as well as be enchanted by emerging voices. 


O Body by Dan “Sully” Sullivan

Release date: Feb. 6


O Body draws a vivid connection between the bodies we inhabit and the way they define us and shape our lives in the outside world. In particular, Dan “Sully” Sullivan—best known for his work in the spoken word and slam poetry communities—examines what it means to live within a male body in a society entrenched in patriarchy and rigid toxic masculinity. As Sully confronts these expectations and hierarchies, he reckons with these harsh archetypes and his own sensitivity and softness. 


Song of My Softening by Omotara James

Release date: Feb. 13


Omotara James’s Song of My Softening, the debut poetry collection from the Cave Canem and Lambda Literary fellow, also starts in the body, considering how one’s relationship with oneself informs and contradicts one’s relationship with the world. Specifically, James considers what it means to be Black and queer in America and the larger world, as well as how to meet external judgment with radical self-compassion. 


Ten Bridges I’ve Burnt by Brontez Purnell

Release date: Feb. 13


With Ten Bridges I’ve Burnt, Whiting Award and Lambda Literary Award winner Brontez Purnell once again defies genre and proves himself to be a bold, unparalleled voice. This memoir in verse continues Purnell’s legacy of pushing boundaries and writing unabashedly about queer sexuality. “The most high-risk homosexual behavior I engage in,” Purnell writes in Ten Bridges I’ve Burnt, “is simply existing.” In the face of this trauma and everyday fight for survival—in which Purnell implicates capitalism and racism, as well as homophobia—Purnell still finds raucous, uncontainable humor in life’s daily absurdities and misadventures. 


Happy reading!