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Thursday, November 5, 2015

Poetry Shops

The New Yorker has an article "the curious persistence of poetry shops": book stores that specialize in poetry, and how they are surviving, and even in a small way thriving, in an era in which many large bookstores have been failing.

"Retail may not get much more niche than poetry, which historically has never been a lucrative proposition. But it does have cachet in some circles, and a dedicated readership. The best poetry stores mix the scholarly with the whimsical, the linear with the arty. Berl’s is in a former gallery space, subleased from two artists, with exposed brick walls that have been painted white, barrel ceilings, a gray Lego sculpture of Walt Whitman, and an eighteen-chair area for readings. On one wall are seventy black-and-white portraits of anarchists and monarchs by the artist Miranda White, Jared’s sister, with whom he has collaborated on a book."

photo of ironwork outside of Mac's Backs in Coventry
Book Reader (photo by GL)
They somehow fail to mention Cleveland in the article, but we do have a few bookstores that are very friendly to poetry, particularly notably Guide to Kulchur and Mac's Backs.

So, horray to our very own poetry shops

-- and we've got art, too.

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The poet doesn't invent. He listens. ~Jean Cocteau