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Poets House Showcase: selected titles 2011

Reginald Harris (Poetry in The Branches Coordinator, Poets House, New York, New York, USA)
Byron Bartlett (Poets House, New York, New York, USA)

Collection Building

ISSN: 0160-4953

Article publication date: 5 October 2012



Poets House, a poetry special collection in New York, hosts an annual exhibit of the preceding year's poetry publications in the USA. This paper aims to offer a selection of recommended titles that reflect the range of poetry titles including single‐author works, anthologies, and prose about poetry.


The paper researched and requested donations of 2010‐2011 poetry titles from US poetry publishers to assemble and display a comprehensive collection of poetry publications, from which a selection of 50 titles was made. The selections should appeal to a range of poetry readers, from novices and students to poets looking to access the latest work from their peers.


Over 2,500 poetry titles were published and/or available to readers in the USA between June 2010 and June 2011. These titles range from mainstream publishers to independent presses to artists' collectives publishing works from established poets as well as emerging and international poets.

Research limitations/implications

Without a budget for collection development, the exhibit and resulting titles represent those which publishers have opted to donate to the library. Every effort is made to be all‐inclusive, with the understanding that publishers may send only a selection of their list. The selected titles herein are based on the titles received for the exhibition.

Practical implications

For 19 years Poets House's annual Showcase has been the main collection‐development tool. Publishers donate copies of their titles, which are arranged by publisher for a month‐long exhibition. This approach enriches the poetry special collection, a unique poetry library built on community participation. The all‐inclusive collection‐development approach results in a full representation of poetry publishing.


A selection made from a comprehensive collection of the year's poetry titles offers a sample of poetry publishing from large to small presses and the self‐published in the USA.



Harris, R. and Bartlett, B. (2012), "Poets House Showcase: selected titles 2011", Collection Building, Vol. 31 No. 4, pp. 158-165.



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