Don't Call Us Dead: Poems
Date: January 2020
Duration: 1 hours 15 minutes
Finalist for the National Book Award for Poetry
Winner of the Forward Prize for Best Collection
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.