This just in! Thanks to the generous support of our major donors, all backers pledging $50 or more will receive not one but three new releases in 2018: OCEANIC by Aimee Nezhukumatathil, THE DREAM OF REASON by Jenny George, and TERRIBLE BLOOMS by Melissa Stein.
“Poetry offers an attention to the world, to beauty, and to love. I think that’s a form of activism: inviting people in this hurting world to see animals and nature and human relationships differently, and to take refuge in beauty.”
—Aimee Nezhukumatathil, author of OCEANIC
You and the poetry-loving Kickstarter community (hello, friends!) have already made a profound impact on the world through poetry—you’ve helped Copper Canyon Press to publish and distribute books by Pablo Neruda, Ocean Vuong, Camille Rankine, W.S. Merwin, and Javier Zamora. So what’s next?
In 2017—this era of slim funding and political uncertainty—we are more reliant than ever on the generosity of our readers to help us thrive as an independent publisher of poetry and continue to offer “refuge in beauty” to readers worldwide. So now we’re back with a book and a poet we think you’ll love, and a message that’s bigger than ever. In a brief, two-week campaign, we are here to:
- Share OCEANIC, Aimee Nezhukumatathil’s generous, earth-loving collection of poetry with backers, hot off the press in spring 2018
- Take refuge in beauty with a selection of backer rewards that celebrate nature and the senses
- Share poetry and conversation with readers: join Aimee on Kickstarter Live Monday, Nov. 13 for a live poetry reading and Q&A session on her work, her book, and what poetry can do for our world.
- Kickstart funding in support of our entire spring 2018 publishing season, which—in addition to OCEANIC—includes books by debut poet Jenny George, Pulitzer Prize winner Ted Kooser, and esteemed novelist and poet Ha Jin!
“I called this book OCEANIC because it’s a word that, to me, encapsulates the world—a sense of an abundance and bounty of love. In naming the book I also thought of my loved ones who are feeling peril in this time and of our planet that's in jeopardy. Like poetry itself, OCEANIC is a love song, to the earth and its inhabitants.”
Aimee Nezhukumatathil is the author of three previous collections of poetry, each beloved by readers and critically acclaimed. Her work is distinguished by a vivid, visceral care for the natural world—including her love of animal and human relationships. OCEANIC will be her first book published by Copper Canyon Press.
Here’s what Aimee says about working with Copper Canyon:
“For over twenty years I’ve eagerly read books from Copper Canyon Press — my bookshelf is full of well-worn and dog-eared favorites. They've ushered in a stunning array of diverse voices throughout the years and I'm truly honored they are about to publish my latest collection.
I’ve been reading Copper Canyon books since I first started studying poetry. I learned about voice from C.D. Wright; the quiet loveliness of staying with an image from W.S. Merwin; and fierce fire from Lucille Clifton. OCEANIC will be the first book of mine to appear with that iconic pressmark."
Aimee was born in Chicago to a Filipina mother and a father from South India. She is the author of three previous collections of poetry. She has served as returning faculty at Kundiman, the Asian American Writers' Retreat, and with Ross Gay, she co-authored the chapbook, Lace & Pyrite: Letters from Two Gardens. Awards for her writing include a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pushcart Prize, and being selected as the 2016-17 John and Renée Grisham Writer-in-Residence. Aimee is poetry editor of Orion Magazine, widely recognized as one of America’s leading environmental magazines. Her collection of nature essays is forthcoming from Milkweed. She is professor of English in the University of Mississippi's MFA program.
We are thrilled to offer the following backer rewards—exclusively for you!
- For $25 or more, receive a letterpress broadside—frameable literary art for your wall—featuring the poem “Sea Church” from OCEANIC. SIGNED by Aimee Nezhukumatathil and numbered by the incredible letterpress artist, Myrna Keliher of Expedition Press
- For $50 or more, receive a copy of OCEANIC hot off the press in early spring 2018! Plus the letterpress broadside described above
- For $100 or more, receive a limited edition print of an original watercolor painting, created by artist and poet Paige Lewis in conversation with OCEANIC, commissioned especially for this campaign—depicting the NARWHAL, one of the animals that Aimee pays tribute to through poetry
Your contribution to the OCEANIC Campaign will help to Kickstart all of the following spring 2018 titles!
Oceanic by Aimee Nezhukumatathil
In her 4th book—her first published with Copper Canyon Press—Nezhukumatathil pays vital and vivid homage to animal and plant life, beauty, and the best of humanity.
Kindest Regards: New And Selected Poems by Ted Kooser
Ted Kooser has delivered one love song after another—mindful, relatable poems on the stuff of life—for five decades. His best new and selected works are assembled here.
A Distant Center by Ha Jin
The poet and acclaimed novelist unfolds the concepts of place and self in moving, far-ranging poems on exile and belonging.
Terrible blooms by Melissa Stein
This second book from APR First Book/Honickman Prize winner Stein subverts the old trope and trappings of femininity with sound-rich lyricism and punch.
The Dream of Reason by Jenny George
A debut collection from a poet with startling talent, George creates a surreal pastoral, narrating the traumas of farm animals and their handlers alike with a mix of absurdity and expansive vision.
Underworld, Otherworld, Prayer Porch by David Bottoms
Memory is “smoke off a damp fire” as Bottoms explores absence, quiet spirituality, and the changing landscape of his childhood.
Purgatorio by Dante, translated by W.S. Merwin
A highlight of Merwin’s prolific and celebrated career as a translator. Led by Virgil and inspired by his legendary love for Beatrice, Dante makes the difficult journey up the Mountain of Purgatory.
Stranger on Earth by Richard Jones
Narrative suites explore romantic ideals, married love, and the confrontations and complexities of the individual within modern family life.
In case you're unfamiliar with us, here's a little more about who we are and what we do.
Copper Canyon Press is a nonprofit arts organization dedicated to publishing extraordinary poetry books, from debut collections to the work of Nobel Laureates and Pulitzer Prize winners.
At Copper Canyon we pride ourselves on taking risks, and we make our publishing decisions based on the aesthetic and cultural value we find in poetry, rather than letting the market dictate our list. As a result, not unlike independent record companies and public radio stations, we rely on the support of donors like you, who share our belief that poetry is vital to language and living.
We are headquartered in the Pacific Northwest, with a longtime office in Port Townsend, Washington, and a Board of Directors based in Seattle. We're a small staff dedicated to our fantastic community of authors, readers, and supporters, and we're grateful to have been doing this good work for 45 years.
Risks and challenges
Publishing poetry is a perpetually risky business due to the relatively small market, and funding for the arts is—especially in our current political climate—wobbly. The current administration has proposed cutting funding for the National Endowment for the Arts in next year's budget, which would impact Copper Canyon Press and our authors significantly. Turning to the fantastic Kickstarter community is one way that we are actively addressing this risk.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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