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A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poetry

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The literary tradition of persona, of writing poems in voices or from perspectives other than the poet's own, is ancient in origin and contemporary in practice. The embodiment of different voices is a moment of true empathy, as the author moves beyond his or her own margins to fully inhabit the character, personality, and mindset of another human being. While there are a g The literary tradition of persona, of writing poems in voices or from perspectives other than the poet's own, is ancient in origin and contemporary in practice. The embodiment of different voices is a moment of true empathy, as the author moves beyond his or her own margins to fully inhabit the character, personality, and mindset of another human being. While there are a great number of poems written in persona, there are no current anthologies that collect and celebrate the diverse writers who work in this mode today. Stacey Lynn Brown and Oliver de la Paz have selected a superb collection of approximately two hundred persona poems. These poems embody characters from popular culture, history, the Bible, literature, mythology, and their diversity is reflective of the wide range of authors working in this genre. The anthology also contains brief explanatory notes written by the poets to help historicize and contextualize their characters and personae.


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The literary tradition of persona, of writing poems in voices or from perspectives other than the poet's own, is ancient in origin and contemporary in practice. The embodiment of different voices is a moment of true empathy, as the author moves beyond his or her own margins to fully inhabit the character, personality, and mindset of another human being. While there are a g The literary tradition of persona, of writing poems in voices or from perspectives other than the poet's own, is ancient in origin and contemporary in practice. The embodiment of different voices is a moment of true empathy, as the author moves beyond his or her own margins to fully inhabit the character, personality, and mindset of another human being. While there are a great number of poems written in persona, there are no current anthologies that collect and celebrate the diverse writers who work in this mode today. Stacey Lynn Brown and Oliver de la Paz have selected a superb collection of approximately two hundred persona poems. These poems embody characters from popular culture, history, the Bible, literature, mythology, and their diversity is reflective of the wide range of authors working in this genre. The anthology also contains brief explanatory notes written by the poets to help historicize and contextualize their characters and personae.

30 review for A Face to Meet the Faces: An Anthology of Contemporary Persona Poetry

  1. 4 out of 5

    Michalina

    3 stars

  2. 5 out of 5

    Courtney Smith

    Excellent collection of contemporary persona poems and dramatic monologues. The introduction is also quite good regarding what the persona poem is, what it does, and why we write them.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Juliana Gray

    Like all anthologies, this one is uneven, but there's plenty of good stuff, including standout poems by Caki Wilkinson, Dan Albergotti, Adam Vines, Gregory Fraser, Jeannine Hall Gailey, Frank Giampietro, Cornelius Eady, Jake Adam York, Patricia Smith, John Poch, Jehanne Dubrow, Chad Davidson, Derrick Harriell, and others. I'm using this anthology in a class on persona poems this semester; I'm looking forward to the day when my students come in, eager to talk about Greg Santos's "Hulk Smash!"

  4. 4 out of 5

    Mike Good

    Didn't quite finish, but loved nearly every poem! Especially "Hulk Smash" by Greg Santos - http://thebestamericanpoetry.typepad.... Didn't quite finish, but loved nearly every poem! Especially "Hulk Smash" by Greg Santos - http://thebestamericanpoetry.typepad....

  5. 5 out of 5

    La

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dinah

  7. 4 out of 5

    Heather Whitley

  8. 5 out of 5

    Lynne

  9. 4 out of 5

    Kevin

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kathryn

  11. 4 out of 5

    Ethan

  12. 5 out of 5

    Reilly

  13. 5 out of 5

    Daudi Mlengela

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kate

  15. 5 out of 5

    Julie

  16. 5 out of 5

    Ivy

  17. 4 out of 5

    Leah Sewell

  18. 5 out of 5

    Bhava Devi

  19. 4 out of 5

    Savannah

  20. 4 out of 5

    Greg Santos

  21. 4 out of 5

    Paige

  22. 5 out of 5

    Vivienne

  23. 5 out of 5

    Starr Davis

  24. 5 out of 5

    Karen

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ayse Bucak

  26. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca Brown

  27. 4 out of 5

    Susan

  28. 5 out of 5

    Michael

  29. 5 out of 5

    Khadijah

  30. 4 out of 5

    Diana

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