A running log of the books I finish each month.

It was originally devoted to volumes of poetry I finished each week; I expanded the scope in 2020 to the current monthly update of all books, regardless of genre. To be clear: these are not books I read in their entirety in a given month; some books take me hours or days, others months or years.







  • Ursula Andjær Olsen (trns, Katrine Øgaard Jensen), Outgoing Vessel (Action Books 2021)
  • JM Tyree, The Counterforce: Pynchon’s Inherent Vice (Fiction Advocate 2021)
  • Olivia Laing, Funny Weather: Art in an Emergency (Norton 2021)
  • Marcus Aurelius (trns, Gregory Hays), Meditations (Random House 2003)
  • Jean Daive (trns, Rosmarie Waldrop) Under the Dome: Walks with Paul Celan (City Lights 2020)
  • Bessel van der Kolk, The Body Keeps the Score (Penguin 2015)
  • Hergé, Explorers on the Moon (Atlantic Little Brown, 1976)
  • Hergé, The Calculus Affair (Atlantic Little Brown, 1976)
  • Hergé, The Red Sea Sharks (Atlantic Little Brown, 1976)
  • Hergé, Tintin in Tibet (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, The Castafiore Emerald (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, Flight 714 (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, Tintin & the Picaros (Atlantic Little Brown, 1978)
  • Hergé, Tintin & Alph-Art (Little, Brown 2004)
  • Michael Farr, Tintin: The Complete Companion (Last Gasp, 2002)


  • CG Jung, Synchronicity (Princeton 1973, 2010)
  • Kelli Russell Agodon, Dialogues with Rising Tides (Copper Canyon 2021)
  • Benjamin Dreyer, Dreyer’s English (Random House 2019)
  • Hergé, The Secret of the Unicorn (Atlantic Little Brown, 1974)
  • Hergé, Red Rackham’s Treasure (Atlantic Little Brown, 1974)
  • Hergé, The Seven Crystal Balls (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, Prisoners of the Sun (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, Land of Black Gold (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, Destination Moon (Atlantic Little Brown, 1976)


April Notes

  1. Evening’s Empire was a long time coming. I checked it out of the library in the spring of 2013, and read maybe the first quarter. I bought a copy a year later, starting over from the beginning. I set it down repeatedly over the next six years, and finally finished the last three chapters in a big push over several days. An absolutely excellent book.

  2. All this Rilke over the last month or so is because of a correspondence course called Rilke by Mail offered by the poet Mark Wunderlich. Rilke was an early and, I see now, extremely strong influence on me when I was a young poet starting out in college.

  3. The sudden proliferation of Above/Ground chapbooks is because I became a subscriber in January. Envelopes appear, sometimes several times a week, with two or three chapbooks enclosed. I will apparently be left with roughly eighty chapbooks by the end of the year.




2020 (everything, such that it is, not just poetry)





  • Hergé, Cigars of the Pharaoh (Atlantic Little Brown, 1975)
  • Hergé, The Blue Lotus (Atlantic Little Brown, 1984)
  • Hergé, The Broken Ear (Atlantic Little Brown, 1978)


  • Elaine Pagels & Karen L King, Reading Judas (Penguin 2007)
  • CK Williams, Repair (FSG 2000)
  • Arthur Sze, The Silk Dragon Translations from the Chinese (Copper Canyon 2001)





  • Robertson Davies: Fifth Business (Penguin 1970), The Manticore (Penguin 1972), and World of Wonders (Penguin 1975) (comfort food rereads)
  • Mary Ann Mattoon: Jungian Psychology after Jung (Round Table Press 1992)
  • Luis Sagasti (Petch, trns): Fireflies (Charco Press, 2017)
  • Clarice Lispector (Entrekin, trns): Near to the Wild Heart (New Directions, 2017)



2019 (poetry only)

35/ Week of 26 August

  • Reginald Shepherd: Red Clay Weather (Pittsburgh, 2011)

34/ Week of 19 August

  • Ken Babstock: On Malice (Coach House, 2014)
  • Tracy K Smith: Wade in the Water (Graywolf, 2018)

31/ Week of 29 July

  • Robert Bly: The Light Around the Body (Harper & Row, 1967; Norton, 2018)
  • Laura (Riding) Jackson: Selected Poems in Five Sets (Persea, 1993)

30/ Week of 22 July

  • Reginald Shepherd: Otherhood (Pittsburgh, 2003)
  • James Lenfestey: The Marriage Book (Milkweed, 2017)

29/ Week of 15 July

  • Robert Bly: Silence in the Snowy Fields (Wesleyan, 1962; Norton, 2018)
  • Philip Levine: What Work Is (Knopf, 1991)
  • Tom Clark: Easter Sunday (Coffee House, 1987)

28/ Week of 7 July

  • Frank O’Hara: Meditations in an Emergency (Grove, 1957)
  • CD Wright: The Poet, the Lion, Talking Pictures, El Farolito, a Wedding in St. Roch, the Big Box Store, the Warp in the Mirror, Spring, Midnights, Fire & All (Copper Canyon, 2016)

25/ Week of 17 June

  • Harryette Mullen: Urban Tumbleweed (Graywolf, 2013)

24/ Week of 10 June

  • Tomas Tranströmer (Bly, trns): The Half-Finished Heaven (Graywolf, 2001, 2017)
  • Jenny George: The Dream of Reason (Copper Canyon, 2018)

23/ Week of 3 June

  • Tomas Tranströmer (various translators): For the Living and the Dead (Ecco, 1995)

20/ Week of 13 May

  • Melissa Stein: Terrible Blooms (Copper Canyon, 2018)
  • Ada Limón: Bright Dead Things (Milkweed Editions, 2015):

19/ Week of 6 May

  • Whitman: Leaves of Grass (1855 Edition) (Penguin Classics, 1986)
  • Ron Padgett: Big Cabin (Coffee House, 2019)
  • Todd Boss: Closer than Home (self-published, 1993)

18/ Week of 29 April

  • Christopher Logue: War Music (FSG, 2015)

14–17/ Finished in April

  • JH Prynne: The White Stones (NYRB, 2016)
  • Claire Wahmanholm: Night Vision (New Michigan Press, 2017)
  • Claire Wahmanholm: Wilder (Milkweed Editions, 2018)
  • Ronald Johnson: ARK (Flood, 2013)
  • John Matthias: Collected Longer Poems (Shearsman, 2012)
  • Jim Harrison: Dead Man’s Float (Copper Canyon, 2016)

13/ Week of 25 Mar

  • AR Ammons: Selected Poems (Library of America, 2006)
  • Ursula Le Guin: So Far So Good: Final Poems 2014–2018 (Copper Canyon, 2018)

12/ Week of 18 Mar

  • Aimee Nezhukumatathil: Oceanic (Copper Canyon, 2018)
  • Rosemary Tonks: Bedouin of the London Evening (Bloodaxe, 2014)

10/ Week of 4 Mar

  • Tracy K Smith: Life on Mars (Graywolf, 2011)
  • CK Williams: The Vigil (FSG, 1997)

9/ Week of 25 Feb

  • Paisley Rekdal: Imaginary Vessels (Copper Canyon, 2016)

8/ Week of 18 Feb

  • Basho (Corman, trns): Backroads to Far Towns (White Pine, 2004)

7/ Week of 11 Feb

  • John Taggart: Is Music (Copper Canyon, 2010)

6/ Week of 4 Feb

  • WS Merwin: The Lice (Atheneum, 1967; Copper Canyon, 2017)
  • Anslem Hollo: Guests of Space (Coffee House, 2007)

5/ Week of 28 Jan

  • Galway Kinnell: Three Books (Mariner, 2002)
  • Tomas Tranströmer (Fulton, trns): The Great Enigma: New Collected Poems (New Directions, 2006)
  • Nicola Stӑnescu (Cotter, trns): Wheel with a Single Spoke (Archipelago, 2012)

4/ Week of 21 Jan

  • Harryette Mullen: Recyclopedia (Graywolf, 2006)
  • Linda Gregg: In the Middle Distance (Graywolf, 2006)

3/ Week of 14 Jan

  • Paul Celan (Joris, trns): Breathturn (Green Integer, 2006)
  • GS Giscombe: Prairie Style (Dalkey, 2008)
  • Rimbaud (Ashbery, trns): Illuminations (Norton, 2011)

2/ Week of 7 Jan

  • Larry Levis: The Widening Spell of the Leaves (Pittsburgh, 1991)
  • Erin Belieu: Slant Six (Copper Canyon, 2014)
  • Mary Ann Caws (ed): Pierre Reverdy (NYRB, 2013)

1/ Week of 31 Dec

  • Ken Babstock: Days Into Flatspin (House of Anansi, 2001)
  • Ursula Le Guin: Wild Angels (Copper Canyon, 1975/2018)
  • Shirley Kaufman: From One Life to Another (Pittsburgh, 1979)