Synopses & Reviews
From "Negro League Baseball":
Mother and Father and other frank nouns flow between freedoms in this stream of conscious dispersal. Rather than say they are musical say: They are music.
I mean we say we mean it
because it feels nice to mean
anything-- it feels childlike a newborn
lost in a beautiful cave on the way to
behavior--It feels and fields and home
and safe only saved, like a packet of foreign sugar
back pocket cafe good nigger swaggerwait.
Harmony Holiday was born in Waterloo, Iowa in 1982. Her father was Northern Soul singer Jimmy Holiday. She is an MFA student at Columbia University.
"Chaotic and mesmerizing, with sex, violence, music, history and semantics moving at breakneck speed, Holiday's debut is a rare event: in prose poems and in isolated lines, her long unruly sentences take in a mother's funeral, a tumultuous love affair, Mississippi family roots, Northern branches, and the partly improvised, often confrontational styles of advanced African-American music from be-bop and post-bop to hip-hop and whatever lies beyond. 'I do not believe in one polished vortex narrower at the core because I do not believe in anything yet,' she says, 'or before or future except that displacement has been one revolution meaning I turned around and said your name.' That part of one sentence gives Holiday's flavor at her most passionately direct, in one of 'these many languages I favor.' The New York poet (whose late father was a soul singer) also sports a mode of teenage defiance, giving loud voice to 'Us kids, us kids just learned to whistle/ The things we'd know were whistleblown.' Hers is an amorous world, full of puns, embracing opportunities, but also one where violence can pop up anywhere, making her 'proud of the things I favor, so sore from them.' Few poets move so fast; few promise so much so enticingly. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
This prizewinning debut collection represents the fullness of Thoughts on Fire” in living color, solid sound, barely arrested motion.
About the Author
Harmony Holiday was born in Waterloo, Iowa in 1982. Her father was Northern Soul singer and songwriter Jimmy Holiday; her mother, 30 years his junior, was studying writing at the University of Iowa at the time they met. Upon her fathers passing in 1987 Harmony moved to Los Angeles, where she spent most of her childhood studying dance before attending UC Berkeley. She currently lives in New York City, and is an MFA student at Columbia University and an instructor of dance and writing courses.