About The Heart’s Work:

Jim Harrison’s Poetic Legacy

Jim Harrison referred to the reading and writing of poetry as his “heart’s work.” After Jim passed, Copper Canyon Press envisioned a multi-year, multi-book project called “The Heart’s Work: Jim Harrison’s Poetic Legacy.” 

Our goal was to secure and advance Jim’s legacy as a great American poet. 

With the blessing of Jim’s family—as well as the sustaining support of generous readers and donors like you—thisvisionary project began in 2018. Over the past six years we’ve published Jim’s poetry in hardback, paperback, ebooks, letterpress broadsides, and as a limited-edition box set. 

Photo Credit: Andy Anderson

Together, we have been able to publish the following volumes as part of The Heart’s Work in four incredible phases:

Phase I

  • Dead Man’s Float (paperback, 2018)
  • The Essential Poems (2019)

Phase II

  • Collected Ghazals (2020)
  • Complete Poems (single volume hardback, 2021)
  • Complete Poems (limited edition three-volume box set, 2022)

Phase III

  • Braided Creek: Expanded Anniversary Edition (2023)

Phase IV

  • The Theory and Practice of Rivers (forthcoming 2025)
  • If you’d like to support The Theory and Practice of Rivers, make your gift here!

To catalyze critical conversations and nuanced thinking about Jim’s poetry, we included an introduction and/or afterword for each book. We are honored to have published pieces by:

  • Rebecca Solnit (forthcoming)
  • Terry Tempest Williams
  • Naomi Shihab Nye
  • John Freeman
  • Colum McCann
  • Denver Butson
  • Joy Williams
  • Ted Kooser

Some of these pieces also appeared in publications like The Paris Review and LitHub, and the books were widely reviewed, including starred reviews in Library Journal and Booklist, as well as an “Editor’s Choice” selection in The New York Times Book Review for Complete Poems. We are delighted that Complete Poems is shelved in over 1,100 public and academic libraries throughout the United States.

Of Jim’s work, the Literary Review remarked, “It is important that we have a poet today who understands the world the way he does. Harrison writes about the world of the shrinking outdoors and the world of urban decay and delivers both with wit and insight and gravity.” 

Thank you for joining us on this six-year journey of wit, insight, and gravity.

With your support, Jim Harrison’s “heart’s work” and legacy continues at Copper Canyon Press.