National Poetry Writing Month: Poetry Mixtape #1


Hello! My name is Tyler Tsay, and I am the Program Director of The Speakeasy Project. I'm glad you're here, and hope you're ready for some poetry.

In celebration of National Poetry Writing Month, I wanted to put together a list of some of my favorite poets & poems for your enjoyment! These are in no particular order, and in no particular sequence. I had a lot of fun pairing these poets together, across timelines, topics, styles, etc. Hope you have fun reading them, too :)

I'll be releasing three (3) more of these mixtapes throughout April. If you think I'm missing some writers, please message me at with suggestions for the next one. For now, read, read & read again!

And be sure to explore more work by these artists outside the poem I've selected from each.

Stay tuned for more.

The resistance
of the angler fish

is to end
a billion years
of darkness

by crowning itself
with its own star.
— "The Resistance of the Angler Fish" by Jess X Chen (as previously published in The Offing)

- River by Frank O'Hara

- I'm Not a Racist by Cortney Lamar Charleston

- everywhere and here too by Vievee Francis

- Fairy Tale by sam sax


- cusp by Lydia Havens

- Go Forget Your Father by Cathy Linh Che

- from Deaf Republic: 10 by Ilya Kaminsky

- The House by Warsan Shire

- Lanat Abad / The Place of the Damned by Solmaz Sharif

- Last Night I Dreamed I Made Myself by Paige Lewis

- I'm not a religious person but by Chen Chen

- Poem with a Rat in It by Duy Doan

- A one ended boomerang by Samuel Wagan Watson

Sometimes in a Moment of Déjà Vu by Joshua Jennifer Espinoza

- No is a complete sentence by Kaveh Akbar

- Tonight I Can Write the Saddest Lines... by Pablo Neruda

- Notes on Staying by Hieu Minh Nguyen

- Arise, Go Down by Li-Young Lee

- Hunger Drives the Body Into Imagination by Jess X Chen

- On Hunger by Hanif Willis-Abdurraqib

- Elegy by Erin O'Malley

- It Was the Animals by Natalie Diaz

- What the Body Remembers by Julian David Randall

- Social Work by Jeannine Hennawi

- Carnivore in Love by Kathryn Hargett

The Ballad of Lily Magnolia by Nancy Huang

- Tell Me Something Good by Ocean Vuong

- not an elegy for Mike Brown by Danez Smith

- Ode to Voicemail by Angel Nafis

- Good Bones by Maggie Smith

- Love by Czeslaw Milosz