Best Poet: Anna K. Crooks

Anna K. Crooks might not have a chapbook out (yet) or be published in major literary journals (time will tell), but none of that really matters and who needs it anyway? Because we live in a world where everything is instantly sharable, you can find many of her poems on the poetry blog You might also find one or two in a copy of a Proliferate zine (which she co-edited with Ellen Paul) floating around town. Then there’s a chance you’ll catch her at a few of the small poetry readings in some DIY spaces, where she reads her poems about whether or not dolphins and lobsters gossip and how they’re not really like humans except in certain ways, and delivers such lines as “why don’t you drive up to my house/ shirtless astride a motorcycle/ ill jump to your arms/ and never look back.” Crooks reads with a voice that is at once incredibly sweet and conveys “don’t fuck with me”; she tosses aside pages from her ordered stack of poems once she’s done with them, and makes the room knowingly nod, laugh, or snap as she advises listeners, like Cosmo gone rogue, to “kill your man, and/ please yourself.”

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