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Don't call us dead : poems /

by Smith, Danez [author.]; Bemis/Flaherty Collection of Gay Poetry; Minnesota State Arts Board [funder.]; Wells Fargo Foundation [funder.]; Jerome Foundation [funder.]; Lannan Foundation [funder.]; Target Corporation [funder.]; McKnight Foundation [funder.]; Amazon Literary Partnership [funder.].
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: Minneapolis, Minnesota : Graywolf Press, [2017]Description: 88 pages ; 23 cm.ISBN: 9781555977856; 1555977855.Other title: Do not call us dead.Uniform titles: Poems. Selections.Subject(s): African American men -- Poetry | African American men -- Violence against -- Poetry | HIV-positive men -- Poetry | Gay men -- Poetry | Transgender people -- Poetry | Gay erotic poetry | Spoken word poetry | Poetry | Poetry
Contents:
Summer, somewhere -- Dear white America -- Dinosaurs in the hood -- It won't be a bullet -- Last summer of innocence -- A note on Vaseline -- A note on the phone app that tells me how far I am from other men's mouths -- & even the black guy's profile reads "sorry, no black guys" -- O nigga O -- ...nigga -- At the down-low house party -- Bare -- Seroconversion -- Fear of needles -- Recklessly -- Elegy with pixels & cum -- Litany with blood all over -- It began right here -- Crown -- Blood hangover -- 1 in 2 -- Every day is a funeral & a miracle -- Not an elegy -- A note on the body -- You're dead, America -- Strange dowry -- Tonight, in Oakland -- Little prayer -- Dream where every black person is standing by the ocean -- Notes.
Summary: Smith's unflinching poetry addresses race, class, sexuality, faith, social justice, mortality, and the challenges of living HIV positive at the intersection of black and queer identity. The collection opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police, a place where suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten and replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved on earth. "Dear White America," which Smith performed at the 2014 Rustbelt Midwest Region Poetry Slam, has as strong an impact on the page as it did on the spoken word stage. Smith's courage and hope amidst the struggle for unity in America will humble and uplift you.
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Item type Home library Collection Shelving location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Books Books Altadena Main Library
Adult Collection Adult NonFiction 811.6 SMI Available 39270004669721

Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

<p> Finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry <br> Winner of the Forward Prize for Best Collection <br> <br> "[Smith's] poems are enriched to the point of volatility, but they pay out, often, in sudden joy."-- The New Yorker <br> <br> Award-winning poet Danez Smith is a groundbreaking force, celebrated for deft lyrics, urgent subjects, and performative power. Don't Call Us Dead opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police, a place where suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten and replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved here on earth. Smith turns then to desire, mortality--the dangers experienced in skin and body and blood--and a diagnosis of HIV positive. "Some of us are killed / in pieces," Smith writes, "some of us all at once." Don't Call Us Dead is an astonishing and ambitious collection, one that confronts, praises, and rebukes America--"Dear White America"--where every day is too often a funeral and not often enough a miracle.</p>

Summer, somewhere -- Dear white America -- Dinosaurs in the hood -- It won't be a bullet -- Last summer of innocence -- A note on Vaseline -- A note on the phone app that tells me how far I am from other men's mouths -- & even the black guy's profile reads "sorry, no black guys" -- O nigga O -- ...nigga -- At the down-low house party -- Bare -- Seroconversion -- Fear of needles -- Recklessly -- Elegy with pixels & cum -- Litany with blood all over -- It began right here -- Crown -- Blood hangover -- 1 in 2 -- Every day is a funeral & a miracle -- Not an elegy -- A note on the body -- You're dead, America -- Strange dowry -- Tonight, in Oakland -- Little prayer -- Dream where every black person is standing by the ocean -- Notes.

Smith's unflinching poetry addresses race, class, sexuality, faith, social justice, mortality, and the challenges of living HIV positive at the intersection of black and queer identity. The collection opens with a heartrending sequence that imagines an afterlife for black men shot by police, a place where suspicion, violence, and grief are forgotten and replaced with the safety, love, and longevity they deserved on earth. "Dear White America," which Smith performed at the 2014 Rustbelt Midwest Region Poetry Slam, has as strong an impact on the page as it did on the spoken word stage. Smith's courage and hope amidst the struggle for unity in America will humble and uplift you.

Publication is made possible, in part, by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant. Funding also provided by Wells Fargo Foundation, Jerome Foundation, the Lannan Foundation, Target, the McKnight Foundation, and the Amazon Literary Partnership.

Includes bibliographical references (page 85).

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Summer, somewhere (p. 3)
  • Dear white America (p. 25)
  • Dinosaurs in the hood (p. 26)
  • It won't be a bullet (p. 28)
  • Last summer of innocence (p. 29)
  • A note on Vaseline (p. 31)
  • A note on the phone app that tells me how far i am from other men's mouths (p. 32)
  • & even the black guy's profile reads sorry, no black guys (p. 33)
  • O nigga O (p. 34)
  • ... nigga (p. 35)
  • Bare (p. 37)
  • Seroconversion (p. 38)
  • Fear of needles (p. 40)
  • Recklessly (p. 41)
  • Elegy with pixels & cum (p. 48)
  • Litany with blood all over (p. 49)
  • It began right here (p. 55)
  • Crown (p. 56)
  • Blood hangover (p. 60)
  • 1 in 2 (p. 61)
  • Every day is a funeral & a miracle (p. 64)
  • Not an elegy (p. 67)
  • A note on the body (p. 72)
  • You're dead, America (p. 75)
  • Strange dowry (p. 78)
  • Tonight, in Oakland (p. 79)
  • Little prayer (p. 81)
  • Dream where every black person is standing by the ocean (p. 82)
  • Notes (p. 85)

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

In this remarkable second collection from Kate Tufts/Lambda Award winner Smith, the content as well as the writing is transcendent. A core poem, "dear white america," already viewed in a YouTube reading by over 300,000 people, opens with the observation, "i've left Earth in search of darker planets," and every line that follows is a stab-in-the-heart summation of the consequences of racism, delivered in taut, pearlescent prose. Claiming that "my grandmother's hallelujah is only outdone by the fear she nurses every time the blood-fat summer swallows another child," Smith demands, "take your God back," adding "I am equal parts sick of your go back to Africa & I just don't see race." In the end, the poet looks for a place where there's a "history you cannot steal or sell or cast overboard.or redline or shackle or silence." That longing also surfaces in the opening poem, which evokes a sort of sunlit afterlife where black males killed violently gather freely and "jump// in the air and hang there," unburdened by fear. These two poems alone are worth the price of admission, but the whole collection measures up. VERDICT Highly recommended. © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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