America: A History in Verse, Volume 1 – SAVE 30%!:


“Seething Nation! Vast & Flowing! Day & Night & Dawn!” Bold, sweeping, investigative, rhapsodic, hilarious, heart-rendering, thought-provoking, Edward Sanders’ three-volume, America: A History in Verse uniquely and brilliantly tells “the story of America…a million stranded fabric / woven by billions of hands & minds”. It is by turns angry, wistful, defiant and extremely funny re-inventions of historical and biographical worlds, a highly original mix of chronicle, anecdote, document, reportage, paean and polemic.

Volume 1, 1900-1939 chronicles the birth of the American century through one world war and to the brink of a second. Not since Leaves of Grass has there been such an un-ironic attempt to give voice to “the rhapsody of a great nation / where so many sing without cease / work without halt / shoulder without shudder / to bring the Feather of Justice to every / bell tower, biome & blade of grass / in Graceful America.”

Long may Sanders sing our common song, and long may his America “dwell in peace, freedom & equality / out on its spiraling arm / in the Milky Way.”

Godine, Publisher | Black Sparrow Press is distributed to the trade by Two Rivers Distribution, an Ingram brand. For more info, click here.

Edward Sanders wrote his first poem on jail-cell toilet paper after being arrested for protesting the launch of nuclear submarines in 1961. Political protest remains an intrinsic part of his poetic vision to this day. In 1976, Sanders founded Investigative Poetry; the principles of this movement appear most prominently in his History in Verse series.
Sanders’ signature is an imaginative compression of historical fact into poetic myth; his mode of “compacted history.” Angry, wistful, defiant and extremely funny, Sanders’ reinventions of historical worlds offer a moving masque of time constructed out of multiple narrative aspects and tones, skillfully and variously implemented by rhetorical techniques of chronicle, anecdote, document, reportage, paean and polemic. “Poetry should again assume responsibility for the description of history,” Ed Sanders proclaimed in his momentous 1976 manifesto on Investigative Poetics. Dedicated since then to a “relentless pursuit of data,” Sanders has distinguished himself as the historically engaged poet of his generation, the one poet of imagination whose work also brings us an important vision of a world existing outside itself.