Brandon Shimoda's selections:
... if by BEST is meant those books of poetry that inflame both conscious and subconscious mind to such a point that not only the poetry, as fluid summons, but I, as fluid respondent, both obese and fall away at once, then these few books have provided such something, for whatever and individual reason (in no particular order):
The Shape is Space by Karena Youtz (Privity Press)
Privity Press is in Boise. This book actually came out towards the end of 2008, though it is STILL one of the best of 2009, not to mention 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013...
INRI by Raul Zurita (Marick Press)
A tremendous fortune that Zurita's works continue to be brought into English. Among the bravest most critically fierce and imaginative RESPONSES and continuing acts of poetic RESISTANCE of the latter 20th 21st or any century.
The Desert by Jen Bervin (Granary Books)
The machine-sewn edition is astoundingly beautiful (and $4000), though the edition I spent time with was a borrowed reading copy -- which, even still, found me within the surprise that erasing the desert would give spring to the most mesmerizing blue-bladed meadow.
Kiss a Bomb Tattoo by Hoa Nguyen (effing press)
Nguyen's new book just came out, though I'm still stuck on this one, still aspiring into its spaces. A continuation of a record of another, though equally necessary, order.
Lake Antiquity by Brandon Downing (Fence Books)
At the time of mentioning, LA was still en route from Singapore. I was able to view (courtesy of Mr. Dark Brandon) a full PDF which, holy fuck, suffered me a stockpile of flashbacks (and forwards). I am sweating to think of the actual object!
Where Shadows Will: Selected Poems 1988-2008 by Norma Cole (City Lights)
A slight Selected, thinner than some of her individual volumes, though still requiring (softly, assuredly) the best of attention. Any invitation of accessing Norma Cole's work must be taken.
New Roman by Phil Cordelli (self-published)
Produced in an edition of 19, which I believe have all been dispersed, and eaten. Phil Cordelli's poems and constructions are quite literally my sustenance, and I hope they remain so long after I'm dead.
Purgatory by Raul Zurita (University of California Press)
See note for INRI above.
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Brandon Shimoda's collaborations, drawings and writings have appeared in The Alps (Flim Forum Press), The Inland Sea (Tarpaulin Sky Press), and elsewhere.