Debut Poetry: Spring 2018


Let 2018 be the year of knowing all the debut poets—as well as the wonderful publishers making their dreams a reality. Here are 10 collections that came out from emerging poets this spring.


Analicia Sotelo’s


“What I love is how, by leaning into the many registers of heartbreak, Sotelo makes something incredibly beautiful. Something that, in its beauty, is a kind of salve.” ― Ross Gay

Published by Milkweed Editions


Emily Van Kley’s

The Cold and the Rust

“Van Kley precisely captures the deathly pall of a Midwestern winter in this remarkably vivid exploration of how it feels to leave home and then return.” — Publishers Weekly

Published by Persea Books


Julayne Lee’s

Not My White Savior

“Through the lens of her experience, Julayne Lee reveals in these poems the trauma of adoptees, the blindness of the world to their suffering, and the truths we must understand in order to do the work of ending a practice that sees children as profit.” — Beau Sia

Published by Rare Bird Books


Erika Ayón’s

Orange Lady

“Erika Ayón’s debut collection of poetry Orange Lady is an immigrant testimony of survival and resilience, of what it means to be in South Central LA, between San Pedro and 23rd Street.” — William Archila

Published by World Stage Press


Lenea Grace’s

A Generous Latitude

“Lenea Grace’s debut collection maps a series of relationships within a greater exploration of Canadiana, barreling through shield and crag, river and slag.” — ECW

Published by ECW Press


Kyle “Guante” Tran Myhre’s

a love song, a death rattle, a battle cry

“A Love Song, A Death Rattle, A Battle Cry is more than just a book; it is an experience. To say every poem was welcoming would be a lie. To say it gave me hope would be another lie. It gave me fight.” — Hieu Minh Nguyen

Published by Button Poetry


Marcelo Hernandez Castillo’s


“The collection asks: what’s the point in any of this?—meaning, what’s the use of longing beyond pleasure; what’s the use of looking for an origin if we already know the ending?” — NU Press

Published by Northwestern University Press


Lauren Moseley’s

Big Windows

Big Windows by Lauren Moseley traverses both the real and the imagined natural world in pursuit of the sacred — exploring love, family, marriage, and self-knowledge; navigating doubt, fear, wonder, and power.” — Bustle

Published by Carnegie Mellon University Press


Sophie Collins’s

Who Is Mary Sue

“Part poetry and part reportage, at once playful and sincere, these fictive–factive miniatures deploy original writing and extant quotation in a mode of pure invention. In so doing, they lift up and lay down a revealing sequence of masks and mirrors that disturb the reflection of authority.” — Faber & Faber

Published by Faber & Faber


Kai Carlson-Wee’s


““Equal parts dithyramb and lament, the great American bardic tradition celebrates lonesome wandering even as it hungers for enduring communion. Kai Carlson-Wee is a worthy inheritor of its dusty mantle” — Campbell McGrath

Published by BOA Editions