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Literature: Poetry

Use this research guide to find credible information on literature in books & videos, library databases, and websites.


This page includes tools you can use to research poets and poetry specifically.

You can also find related information on the poetry anthologies assignment page.

Reference Books

Reference books are on the 1st floor and there are several online databases which contain reference books about literature (including poetry).

Reference Books, like encylopedias, are great starting point for research. Here are some examples:

book cover for Twentieth Century Literary Criticismbook cover for Contemporary Authors

Gale Literary Criticism series:

Excerpts of literary criticism spanning from the time a work was written until present time:

  • Contemporary Literary Criticism (CLC)
  • Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism (TCLC)
  • Nineteenth Century Literature Criticism (NCLC)

Biographies of contemporary authors:

  • Contemporary Authors (CA)
  • Contemporary Authors New Revision Series (CANR)

[Use the index in the back of any recent volume, or the paperback TITLE index to search for a work, or use the online index at:]

More reference books:


Find more e-encyclopedias in these SCC library databases

Print poetry journals in the Library

The library houses two literary journals which contain poetry. 

Find these periodicals in the library periodicals room:

PennSound Daily

Listen to poetry from hundreds of poets at PennSound from U. of Pennsylvania's Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing.


Use the library Search to find books on specific subjects. You'll find print books and some ebooks.

Books about Poetry are located in the 800s call number section of the collection

  • Books that check out are on the library 2nd floor in the
  • Reference books are on the 1st floor. They're a great starting place for research.
  • Partner Libraries search will find books at Gonzaga and other area college libraries.

Your SCC Library has books on these subjects and more:

  • Maya Angelou
  • Sherman Alexie
  • English Poetry - !9th Century
  • Indians of North America - Poetry

eBook Database:

Library Databases


The Library subscribes to a variety of databases that contain quality information for student research.  The following databases will be especially useful researching poetry topics: 

Resources for teaching poetry

Open Educational Resources (OER)

There are lots of open courses which are available for free online. The content of these courses can be adapted (with permissions) and reused as a teaching resource.

In a web search engine, try searches like the following, or consult with your SCC Librarians for help finding appropriate open course content. Searches to try on the web:

  • poetry and open course
  • poetry and opencourseware
  • poetry and mooc

You will find open courses from Yale, MIT, U of Penn, and other institutions of higher learning.

About this guide

This guide was created by Librarians at 

Spokane Community College Library 

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