ENGL 113 Introduction to Poetry

Find Poetry

Searching the Collection

Search by poet or Browse by theme, year or other - and don't forget to search to see if there is a website for the author. 

  • Read and listen to poetry online through the Poetry Foundation. 
  • Search for a poet or browse the website. You can even listen to audiocasts.

(click on image to enlarge)

screenshot of the Poetry Foundation website

  • The Library of Congress Poet Laureate page is a great source of poetry and other works by and about poets.
  • Use if your poet was a poet laureate of the US!

(click on image to enlarge)

screenshot of the library of congress, poet Laureate page

To find poetry in Holman Library books: 

  • Search by Poet or Collection
  • Search by Keyword
  • Browse by Subject Heading 
By Author:
  • Change Contains to: is (exact) or enter the name in quotes.
  • Change Any Field to: Author/Creator.

(click in image to enlarge)screenshot of a search limited to the author's name

  • You can limit to books immediately at Material Type or wait to see what you find and then limit by Source Type.
    • Note: Our books may be print or digital e-books you can read online or download.
    • Also Note: A Search by author will find everything the author has written (in our librray), including poetry, essays, etc.

By Keyword:

Your poet's work may be included in an anthology.

  • To search more broadly for work by your author, do not change Any Field to Author. 
  • A keyword search returns, for example, works by Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey in a collection of poetry by US Poet Laureates.
By Subject:

Subject Headings return all the work we have on a given subject.

  • Use Advanced Search to search by subject at Any Field.

Look for Subjects associated with books by or about your poet. Here's a screenshot of the subjects associated with a book I found with a keyword search of Natasha Trethewey:

(click in image to enlarge)

screenshot of the item, showing the subjects related to the item 

Gale Literature

This is a literary criticism database. Most of the content is mainstream and scholarly criticism, but you will find some work by the poet in his or her own words.

  • Limit to Primary Sources and Literary Works.

Other library databases may have full text or excerpts of works by your poets. Try the following sources:

Requesting Books from Other Libraries

InterLibrary Loan (or ILL) is a service offered by Holman Library for borrowing books and articles from other libraries. 

  • Books and other items that require mailing may take 1-2 weeks.
  • Articles and other digital items may arrive within 2-5 days. Be sure to include your email as your contact info.

To request an item, use information you find in the tools above to fill out the Student Interlibrary Loan form. If you need help filling out this form, call the library reference desk at (253) 931-6480.

InterLibrary Loan requests are free to students, faculty and staff.

Strategies for Finding Poetry

Search Tips

To find poetry, I suggest the following strategies and sources linked to on this page:

Use the tabbed box to the left to search for poetry online, in Holman Library books (including ebooks), in library databases, and in other libraries. 

Here are some key resources:
  • Poetry Foundation: A wonderful source of work by a range of poets. Resources may include: poems, audio, video, articles about the poet, interviews and more.
  • Poets.org: from the American Academy of Poets. Find poems and info on poets. Filter by state (find Washington state poets!), literary movement or year.
  • The Library of Congress: Poets Laureate  
    • To learn about each poet, click on the link: Read more about (poet's name) and find a brief professional biography of the poet and great links to resources about that poet, including samples of their poetry, webcasts of poetry readings and audiocasts.
  • Poets Laureate - WA state. You can also search by city or look for teen poet laureates.
  • Poetry Northwest is a publication devoted to current regional poetry.
  • Poetry books in Holman Library, including works by your poet or collections with work by your poet.
  • Gale Literary Sources database: Primary Sources may return poetry (along with interviews and more) by your poet. 
  • Library Databases: You may also find poetry in the other library databases on this page: Academic Search Complete, ProQuest and JSTOR. 
  • Your local Public Library
  • InterLibrary Loan: As a GRC student you may borrow books for free from other libraries. Use WorldCat to search for works by your poet and then submit an InterLibrary Loan request form to have the book sent to Holman Library for you. Start early. Books may take a week or two to arrive.
  • The Web: A Web search may find your poet's website or an educational website with work by your poet.