Electronic book text
February 13, 2018
9780819577719
English
104
9.00 Inches (US)
7.00 Inches (US)
$12.99 USD
v2.1 Reference
Paperback / softback
March 6, 2018
9780819577627
English
104
9.00 Inches (US)
7.00 Inches (US)
.55 Pounds (US)
$15.95 USD
v2.1 Reference
Hardback
March 6, 2018
9780819577702
English
104
9.00 Inches (US)
7.00 Inches (US)
.85 Pounds (US)
$30.00 USD
v2.1 Reference

Inquisition

During the 1982 air strikes on Beirut, Faiz Ahmed Faiz asked his friend Mahmoud Darwish “Why aren’t the poets writing this war on the walls of the city?” Darwish responded, “Can’t you see the walls falling down?” Queer, Muslim, American, Kazim Ali has always navigated complex intersections and interstices on order to make a life. In this scintillating mixture of lyrics, narrative, fragments, prose poem, and spoken word, he answers longstanding questions about the role of the poet or artist in times of political or social upheaval, although he answers under duress. An inquisition is dangerous, after all, especially to Muslims whose poetry and art and spiritual life has always depended not on the Western ideal of a known God or definitive text but on the concepts of abstraction, geometry, vertigo. “Someone always asks ‘where are you from,’” Ali writes, “and I want to say ‘a body is a body of matter flung/from the far corners of the universe and I am a patriot/of breath of sin of the endless clamor/out the window.’” Ali engages history, politics, and the dangerous regions of the uncharted heart in this visceral new collection.

Review

"Ali confronts philosophical quandaries capable of leading readers into their own reveries of the sublime."—Publishers Weekly

“In the end, the extravagance of Inquisition, its restless, inclusive, fast-moving modes and methods, is in the service of an exploration of how poetry can work when more and more people come from many places at the same time." ”—Dan Alter, Angel City Review

Endorsement

"What a gift Kazim Ali's Inquisition is, what a generosity, in its sustained and sustaining inhabitation of the mystery. That, without ignoring heartbreak or rage, it understands that we are always 'at the end of knowing,' and shows us how we might reside there. And from which residence, Inquisition reminds me: love."—Ross Gay, author of Catalog of Unabashed Gratitude

"Ali's use of the inherent musicality of language gives the poems an incantatory beautyThe poems feel vibrant and effortless, with one sound, one word, blending into the next. The resulting music, that lives in the mind, in the mouth, and the air, offers its own meaning, a sense of understanding on an elemental level that is satisfying and complex." —Vandana Khanna, author of The Goddess Monologues
Wesleyan University Press
Wesleyan Poetry Series

9780819577627 : inquisition-ali
Paperback / softback
104 Pages
$15.95 USD
9780819577702 : inquisition-ali
Hardback
104 Pages
$30.00 USD
9780819577719 : inquisition-ali
Electronic book text
104 Pages
$12.99 USD

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Sky Ward

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May 2013 - Wesleyan University Press
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