The poets in this folio dare readers to enter into their world, provoke us to think about how conventions can sometimes act as impediments. These poets make leaps, and are challenging how we view the poem as a vehicle for experiencing the world. Each of them has a very different way of showcasing the experimental but all have one thing in common--they write this way because they must. It is not a form of luxury. These poems search themselves to get closer to the truth.
Often we’re taught that poets of color who engage with the experimental are doing so because they are uncertain, confused, there’s no method to their madness— and there’s no thought behind the craft. On the other hand, their white counterparts’ experimental methods are considered purposeful, fascinating and forward-thinking. I would like to disprove these notions about experimental poets of color in this folio and introduce 15 poets who are quite in fact: radically purposeful.
I invite you to engage with these poems, even when they make you uneasy.Their defiant way of bearing witness & constant persistence may leave you feeling challenged and uncomfortable. You may also leave the poem more confused than when you started. You may feel: marginalized. And this just means you’re closer to the poet’s Truth.
I’m proud to present Radical: Avant-Garde Poets of Color. Revolutionary poems putting in major work.
Ysabel Y. Gonzalez