So, let's say your local B&N has 10 copies of a book by Charles Bukowski. That is a nice initial buy for a guy who tends to do well in B&N stores. That book could be displayed on a table, an endcap and faced-out in the section. Faced-out books sell 80% better than spined-out books. It catches the eye. And most Americans have trouble reading the titles of books on bookshelves. Assuming things in any particular bookstore are alphabetical to begin with. Which is a 30-70 proposition, especially in the low trafficked Poetry Section. Which unless you have a poet on staff is like the Herpes Section.
So what chance does your book have against Charles'? No chance. Yours, if it's even there, is just another tiny spine crushed between a bunch of other tiny spines. Without publisher backed placement dollars, an in-store event or major review attention (what poetry book gets that?) you gotta hope some totally turned-on person comes in and says, whoa, Rebecca Wolff has a new book. Cool.