What poets changed the way you thought about writing?
Under palm trees on a patio overlooking Tampa Bay, I sipped wine with a bunch of Literature PhD students. One said, “I love Maggie Nelson.” The next said, “No, I love Maggie Nelson.” And I said, “No, I really love Maggie Nelson.” It went around like that for a while until we agreed it’s become a cliché to say Maggie Nelson is your favorite writer.
In the same vein of kickass-female-scholar-writers, Jenny Boully is also fabulous and dreamy. As a fledgling undergrad I read The Body, her book-length essay composed in only in footnotes to an invisible text, and The Book of Beginnings and Endings, a book comprised solely of the beginnings and endings of essays. Boully is forever expanding and collapsing my notions of genre. I cannot recommend her most recent book Betwixt-and-Between: Essays on the Writing Life highly enough.