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If we are to start again, "renewed or better," VILLAINY insists, we’ll first suffer the pain of radical un-making. Willingness to suffer such pains, in, for example, the desire to be "flat" (which would hurt) constitutes villainy while the world belongs to "1. CAPITALISM 2. THE STATE 3. COLONIALISM 4. NAZIS 5. RACISM 6. OPPRESSION." This is a text that performs the awful compression – squeezing – of our capacities collectively to deal with reckless disrespect for life not just under this government. This book is fire. But not to burn-it-down. To light my way to a friend.

—Simone White

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Featured on September 13, 2021

Muscle Memory

The thing that first brought me to Kyle Carrero Lopez’s poetry, and which held me there, which stirred me to stay, is his honesty, an exuberant/charming/fierce/poignant realness that sounds inimitable because it is. Throughout this profuse debut, Kyle encounters and confronts the fetishization, commodification, and resignification of the black experience, navigating the fraught latinx and black [poc] imaginary as it is produced and reproduced by white people while rubbing up against the paradox and privilege of every “Black capitalist wet dream” which, with undeniable Cubanía, here includes a boundless joy, bodied through an inventory of a “quick Thai lunch” and glitters of picadillo and beef empanadas after the confetti of last night’s revelry converges with a march for Black Lives Matter to remind us that all of these, all of this, is a celebration of life. “Symbolism and/Personhood aren’t friends,” Kyle cautions in “Beauty Examined”; MUSCLE MEMORY is a tribute to the African diasporic experience across the Americas and beyond, a confounding that resists simple geographies, neat histories, threadbare politics, inclusion-exclusion dialectics of belonging, and the aesthetic markings of a liberal and cosmopolitan literary art market that consumes black bodies whole and in pieces, in life and in death.

—Chris Campanioni

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Featured on September 6, 2021


VESTIGIAL is a flesh epic braiding time and bodies. Poet and librettist Aja Couchois Duncan writes, “The story of evolution is a love story” and, here, the land, water, and air function as organs in her lovers’ mercurial anatomies. Duncan renders her characters in a language binding them to a natural world, such that science and myth become twinned. The result is a poetry of precise resistance to worldviews that insist on cleaving the human from the environment. At scales simultaneously intimate and monumental, the poet resists the figurative to orchestrate eros, violence, and corporeal transformation. “In the epigenetic drift, she is alternating between ancestry and an impossible future tense,” Duncan says of the VESTIGIAL's odaanisan. She could very well be saying that of her own visionary poetics.

— Douglas Kearney

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Featured on August 30, 2021

Fidelitoria: Fixed or Flux

FIDELITORIA: FIXED OR FLUX navigates interior landscapes, personal cosmology, and the manner in which language shapes our being and being shapes our language via acts of séance, tarot, alchemical interpretation, and psychoanalysis. These are poems written in the wild swing of the scrying stone, poems that ask how to create an identity in the way of perpetual change, constant self-interrogation, and ever shifting psychogeography. What does it mean to live in the orb of uncertainty? To be neither here nor there, neither fixed nor fluxed?

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