Don't Call Us Dead Poems - Chatto Poetry

Paperback (18 Jan 2018)

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Publisher's Synopsis

*A Finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry 2017*

*A Financial Times and Telegraph Book of the Year 2018*

'[Smith's] poems are enriched to the point of volatility, but they pay out, often, in sudden joy' The New Yorker

Award-winning poet Danez Smith is a ground-breaking 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 an HIV-positive diagnosis.

'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 an America where every day is too often a funeral and not often enough a miracle.

Our Booksellers Say...

"This brilliant collection refuses the shame associated with being HIV positive, and chooses to embrace sex, friendship, and love, in a society that is the opposite of loving to black people. Danez Smith engages with questions of names, naming and the unnameable, to forge a new language of belonging."

Emily, Bookseller (Broad Street)

View all of Emily's recommendations

Book information

ISBN: 9781784742041
Publisher: Random House
Imprint: Chatto & Windus
Pub date:
DEWEY: 811.6
DEWEY edition: 23
Language: English
Number of pages: 88
Weight: 168g
Height: 230mm
Width: 171mm
Spine width: 9mm