Poetry Gets an Obama Bump

It’s heartening to see the chapbook of Elizabeth Alexander’s Inaugural poem, Praise Song for the Day, rise on Amazon. It’s currently at #290 (from #9,059) in overall sales rankings and at #1 in poetry, despite the fact that it was reprinted in newspapers and online.

The AP’s story on the poem noted that the publisher is releasing 100,000 copies of the chapbook, but that Maya Angelou’s poem for President Clinton’s inauguration sold a million copies. At the time of that story, Praise Song was at #429 on Amazon.

Alexander’s earlier poetry collection is at #3 in poetry (#2 is Maya Angelou’s Letter to My Daughter, which is not poetry, but a collection of essays. Amazon’s classifications can be strange) and is at #333 on the overall list. It’s owned in small quantities in most large libraries, with reserves in some areas


Praise Song for the Day: A Poem for Barack Obama’s Presidential Inauguration 
Alexander, Elizabeth

  • Paperback: $8.00; 32 pages
  • Publisher: Graywolf Press (February 6, 2009)
  • ISBN-10: 1555975453
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555975456



American Sublime
Alexander, Elizabeth

  • Paperback: $14; 96 pages
  • Publisher: Graywolf Press (September 22, 2005)
  • ISBN-10: 1555974325
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555974329

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