From the National Book Award-winning author of Lighthead, Terrance Hayes, a fascinating collection of graphic reviews and illustrated prose addressing the last century of American poetry--to be published simultaneously with his latest poetry collection, So to Speak
Canonized, overlooked, and forgotten African American poets star in Terrance Hayes's brilliant contemplations of personal, canonical, and allegorical literary development. Proceeding from Toni Morrison's aim to expand the landscape of literary imagination in Playing in the Dark ("I want to draw a map, so to speak, of a critical geography"), Watch Your Language charts a lyrical geography of reading and influence in poetry. Illustrated micro-essays, graphic book reviews, biographical prose poems, and nonfiction sketches make reading an imaginative and critical act of watching your language. Hayes has made a kind of poetic guidebook with more questions than answers. "If you don't see suffering's potential as art, will it remain suffering?" he asks in one of the lively mock poetry exam questions of this musing, mercurial collection. Hayes's astonishing drawings and essays literally and figuratively map the acclaimed poet's routes, roots, and wanderings through the landscape of contemporary poetry.
Terrance Hayes is the author of Lighthead, winner of the 2010 National Book Award and finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. His other poetry collections are American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin, How to Be Drawn, Wind in a Box, Hip Logic, and Muscular Music, and he is also the author of To Float in the Space Between: A Life and Work in Conversation with the Life and Work of Etheridge Knight, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism. His honors include a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a 2014 MacArthur Fellowship. Hayes lives in New York City, where he is a professor of creative writing at New York University.
- Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
- Publish Date: July 18, 2023
- Pages: 240
- Dimensions: 6.0 X 9.0 X 0.7 inches | 0.65 pounds
- Language: English
- Type: Paperback
- EAN/UPC: 9780143137733
- BISAC Categories: American - African American, Essays, Poetry