Three Literary Journals with Great Poetry to Teach to Your Students
It is way too often that the canon of our literature focuses primarily on authors who are deceased. However, there are so many talented poets writing today that it is foolish not to teach them as well. With the Twitter movement that has taken hold, #TeachLivingPoets, I decided to use this space to spotlight a few literary journals where you can find some of today’s most vivid poets. They all have work online that is available and the history of their issues can be perused either in their archives or by ordering prior issues.
The Adroit Journal is an American literary journal that was founded by Peter LaBerge. It has been home to some of America’s most prolific young writers and also features emerging writers who should be on your radar. It has published work by Franny Choi, D.A. Powell, Kaveh Akbar. Its overall aesthetic combines vivid imagery with quirky, visceral details and personhood and specificity of experience unique to each author. Similarly to ReDivider, it aims to provide a platform to voices that have frequently been marginalized and eroded in the literary community. This gives the work featured in the issues a wide range of perspectives and styles.
ReDivider is a relatively new online literary journal — at least in comparison to many in print, whose existences span multiple decades — and already has provided a home for poems of some of the most renowned poets alive today. It focuses on providing a platform for underrepresented poets and those with marginalized identities. It is based out of Emerson College in Boston and is run by the graduate students earning their MFA and Ph.D.’s in those programs.
Black Warrior Review is “the oldest continuously-run literary journal produced by graduate students in the United States.” It was established in 1972 at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa. The contributors to this literary journal are relatively high profile and have one numerous award, including Pulitzer Prizes and National Book Awards. It is home to a wide range of magnetic poetry, and its archive is worth a read.