Poet Natalie Diaz discusses her new collection, Postcolonial Love Poem, longlisted for the 2020 National Book Award, with Live Wire Radio host Luke Burbank and announcer Elena Passarello. Join us for a live streamed discussion, recording for later broadcast on Live Wire Radio.
About Postcolonial Love Poem
“Diaz’s collection is no doubt one of the most important poetry releases in years, one to applaud for its considerable demonstration of skill, its resistance to dominant perspectives and its light wrought of desire.”
—The New York Times Book Review
Postcolonial Love Poem is an anthem of desire against erasure. Natalie Diaz’s brilliant second collection demands that every body carried in its pages—bodies of language, land, rivers, suffering brothers, enemies, and lovers—be touched and held as beloveds. Through these poems, the wounds inflicted by America onto an indigenous people are allowed to bloom pleasure and tenderness: “Let me call my anxiety, desire, then. / Let me call it, a garden.” In this new lyrical landscape, the bodies of indigenous, Latinx, black, and brown women are simultaneously the body politic and the body ecstatic. In claiming this autonomy of desire, language is pushed to its dark edges, the astonishing dunefields and forests where pleasure and love are both grief and joy, violence and sensuality.
Diaz defies the conditions from which she writes, a nation whose creation predicated the diminishment and ultimate erasure of bodies like hers and the people she loves: “I am doing my best to not become a museum / of myself. I am doing my best to breathe in and out. // I am begging: Let me be lonely but not invisible.” Postcolonial Love Poem unravels notions of American goodness and creates something more powerful than hope—a future is built, future being a matrix of the choices we make now, and in these poems, Diaz chooses love. (via)