Though Obsession may sound like the title of a movie, or the name of a perfume, I’m talking about a new anthology edited by Carolyn Beard Whitlow and Marilyn Krysl, subtitled Sestinas in the Twenty-First Century. The sestina is a complex poetic form of medieval French origin, but as the subtitle indicates, the poems in this anthology were written not so long ago, by our contemporaries. Among the poets included are Rhina Espaillat, Michael Cantor, Marilyn Nelson, Rafael Campo, Marie Ponsot, Dana Gioia and Donald Hall, along with many others, including myself. The poems are organized by theme: Americana; Art; Love and Sex; Memory; etc., and the editors have written introductions to each of the sections, making for a most pleasant reading experience. As a final touch, Lewis Turco, an expert on poetic forms, has provided an Afterword. This is an anthology like no other. I recommend it highly.

Here’s a link: Obsession

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