POSTCOLONIAL LOVE POEM
* Winner of the 2021 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry *
“[Postcolonial Love Poem] is a powerhouse, filled with poems that will challenge you, comfort you, and arouse you. These are the kind of poems that inspire the reader to come to the page to make art of their own, and you will surely find your way to your own words.” —Autostraddle
About POSTCOLONIAL LOVE POEM
Natalie Diaz’s brilliant and highly anticipated second collection, Postcolonial Love Poem, is an anthem of desire against erasure. In these poems, she demands that every body — bodies of language, land, rivers, suffering brothers, enemies, and lovers — be touched and held as beloveds and 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, in 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.
Natalie Diaz is the author of Postcolonial Love Poem and When My Brother Was an Aztec, winner of an American Book Award. She has received many honors, including a MacArthur Fellowship, a USA fellowship, a Lannan Literary Fellowship, and a Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Artist Fellowship. She is Mojave and an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Tribe. She teaches at Arizona State University.