The New Testament – Jericho Brown
Brown masterfully layers the experiences of being black and queer with the contemporary socio-political sphere, widely cutting between touching and profound lyricism. Their subversive use of the bible to tackle the subject matter also reorients the scope of where queer subjects can, and are, culturally placed.
Black T-shirt Collection – Inua Ellams
Ellams manages to blisteringly weave together spoken word and graphic design to create the story of two foster brothers working together to set up a global t-shirt brand. A story not just of sibling love, but where one finds home in an increasingly global (and capital) landscape filled with the violences of racism and homophobia.
In the Dream House – Carmen Maria Machado
Machado eloquently recreates the trauma of an abusive lesbian relationship, seeking to uncover the violences often left overlooked by wider society. The memoir not only revitalises the content, but realises the potential of the memoir to deconstruct how memory and trauma often collide with devastating consequences.
The Corpse Washer – Sinan Antoon
Antoon takes the well-tread war narrative and centres the violent experiences experienced by the Iraqi population by the aggressive intervention of the United States and crumbling democratic and religious structures during the multiple conflicts in the region. The narrative goes beyond this though, exploring what it means to be a son, not just of a father but of a country amongst the backdrop of erasure and death.
Paul Takes the Form of a Mortal Girl – Andrea Lawlor
Lawlor redefines the bildungsroman through the context of early 90s queer activism and the punk scene. The story follows Paul, who has the ability to shape-shift, as they move through experiences of queer loss and potential set to the vivid backdrop and connectivity that punk and identity provides.
Christopher W. Clark (@chriswillclark) reads, writes, and teaches things. Their poems have featured in various publications including The Cadaverine and Ink, Sweat, & Tears. They have collaborated with The Royal Philharmonic Society and photographer Mick Frank among others. They are currently working on a chapbook and full-length novel that deal with the intersections of class, mental health, and queerness.