Author: Phillip B. Williams
Publisher: Penguin (2021)
Mutiny: a rebellion, a subversion, an onslaught. In poems that rebuke classical mythos and western canonical figures, and embrace Afro-Diasporanfolk and spiritual imagery, Phillip B. Williams conjures the hell of being erased, exploited, and ill-imagined and then, through a force and generosity of vision, propels himself into life, selfhood, and a path forward. Intimate, bold, and sonically mesmerizing, Mutiny addresses loneliness, desire, doubt, memory, and the borderline between beauty and tragedy. With a ferocity that belies the tenderness and vulnerability at the heart of this remarkable collection, Williams honors the transformative power of anger, and the clarity that comes from allowing that anger to burn clean.
“The mutiny that gives Williams’s second collection its title is a wholesale rebellion against a culture that too often erases Black queerness; with punchy lines and formal play, the poems here make equal room for rage and tenderness.”
–The New York Times Book Review
“[Mutiny] demonstrates the significance of writing for oneself in a world that often denies Black queer people personhood . . . From grief, death, and destruction, Williams spins gold. He resists false senses of security, instead offering readers room to sit in the flood of feeling that characterizes our daily reality. Absorbing even the most torrential emotional downpour at the current state of the world, Williams work builds a kingdom of queer splendor and satisfaction for the reader to rest in.”
“This book is for the ages. It hits on so many levels: urgency, complexity, formal inventiveness, depth of feeling, and pleasure in language . . . Sweeping and intimate, fierce and tender, visceral and virtuosic . . . Rage and pure passion jump off the page.”
–The Adroit Journal