Monthly Archives: December 2016

As if you care: My Best of 2016 Lists

Corey’s Much-Anticipated Best of 2016

Making no concession to release dates, all movies, cds and books are ones I encountered for the first time in 2016. Because, you know, if you haven’t read it or seen it or heard it yet, it’s new, right? All lists are in no particular order.

Best books I read

Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky by Patrick Hamilton
Fascinated by Miles Gibson
Living on Paper: Letters by Iris Murdoch
Cold Eye by Margaret Skinner
Leonard Cohen on Leonard Cohen
American Purgatorio by John Haskell
Almost Completely Baxter by Glen Baxter
The Compass Flower by W. S. Merwin
With Ignorance by C. K. Williams
A Game of Hide and Seek by Elizabeth Taylor
Sure Signs by Ted Kooser
Nutshell by Ian McEwan
The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler
Lucky Bastard by Charles McCarry
Cruelty by Ai
Swann’s Way by Marcel Proust
The Holly and the Ivy by Wynward Browne
A World of Difference by Heather McHugh
Butcher’s Crossing by John Williams
And I read the entire Leaves of Grass. Few poets achieved Whitman’s level of richness and depth and music.

Best movies I saw

Mistress America (Baumbach)
The Long Memory (Hamer)
The Salvation (Levring)
Fear Me Not (Levring)
The Apu Trilogy (Ray)
Shark vs. Eagle (Waititi)
Maelstrom (Villeneuve)
Incendies (Villeneuve)
Love and Friendship (Stillman)
Attenberg (Tsangari)
The Beatles: Eight Days a Week (Howard)
Parade’s End (White)
Oedipus Rex (Pasolini)
The Lobster (Lanthimos)
Ex Machina (Garland)
Anomalisa (Johnson/Kaufman)
Carol (Haynes)
Yoyo (Etaix)
The Collector (Rohmer)
Shame (McQueen)
Everlasting Moments (Troell)

Best cds I got:

The Ghosts of Highway 70 by Lucinda Williams
Blackstar by David Bowie
Girls with Guitars and Destroy that Boy: More Girls with Guitars by Various Artists
The Essential Carl Perkins
The Further Adventures of Charles Westover by Del Shannon
Heartaches by the Number by The Bo-keys
Epic Jammers and Fortunate Little Ditties by Bitchin Bajas
Glean and Phone Power by They Might be Giants
Good Times by The Monkees
Cosmetic by NOTS
It’s Too Late to Stop Now, Volumes 2, 3, 4 by Van Morrison
Not Your Standard Monkees Trash Stash by Michael Nesmith
The Band Live at the Academy of Music 1971
Elmer Gantry’s Velvet Opera by Elmer Gantry
Elvis at Stax
The Big Countdown: John Zorn Plays the Music of Ennio Morricone
Circlin’ Back by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band
Skeleton Tree by Nick Cave
You Want it Darker by Leonard Cohen
Peace Trail by Neil Young
The Complete Reprise Sessions by Gram Parsons
The Anthology 1964-1971 by The Kinks

And, at the end of every year, or at the beginning of the next year, I read a BIG classic that I’ve always meant to read. It helps chip away at that “Must-read list” and it helps to slow me down amid or after the tumult of the holiday season. This year I am returning to Proust’s In Search of Lost Time. Last year I read the first book and meant to read the second, Within a Budding Grove, during 2016 but, somehow, didn’t manage it. Hence, it is my BIG classic this year. Happy New Year. And, yes, I am almost without hope concerning 2017.

One new poem, with audio

…Here at Under a Warm Green Linden:

My Year in Books, via Goodreads

Susan Cushman expounds on Robert Walker

Very kind words from a sharp and passionate reader: