The Delicacy of Embracing Spirals

The Delicacy of Embracing Spirals

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Author: mimi tempestt

Publisher: City Lights Books (2023)

the delicacy of embracing spirals investigates the ways in which the personal narrative of Black queer womanhood can be expressed through, a radically human lens. With a visual sensibility that explodes across the page, the collection begins with microcosmic poems of personal struggle and spirals out to macrocosmic texts of social and political critique. The book culminates in a fantastic account of the staging of a play with life-threatening consequences.

"To encounter the words of mimi tempestt on the page, or in performance, is to witness the rare transcendency of language where the line becomes an exacting blade."

-Truong Tran

"mimi has honed her super power as a dynamic writer who is able to swiftly insert oneself into her art in a rhythmically unique and immortal kinda way. A way that makes you see her, yourself and the placement of the universe as we've known it to be. the delicacy of embracing spirals is an astonishing creation that will be to the times what Lorraine Hansberry's Young, Gifted and Black was in the 70's and beyond. This work of art spirals from the page to the stage. From the personal (innerspace) to the universal (outerspace). mimi tempestt is truly out of this world! "

-Leelee Jackson

"the delicacy of embracing spirals (re)tracks mimi tempestt making a bloody break north: out the ravenous L.A. grotesquerie Mama Wanda warned us about over and again. And like the late Mz. Coleman, this poet has it down pat that grit teeth sometimes mean to be shivs as much as grimace and that a grimace may as well be a smile under misogynoir's butchering ogle. Recognize, as tempestt does, that what distinguishes a casting call from a cattle call is how long the gaze fixes on you and whether the credits say your name. For tempestt, whose 'body armor is a pound of sweat,' the role has been to be gored again again again again, dying fiercely in scenes of such drylongso vérité you might mistake them for surreal. In this way, she carries Coleman and Kaufman with her to make a poetry I found too livid to be abject and too vivid to forget. Even as the theater's lights go up: tempestt, tempestt, tempestt."

-Douglas Kearney