Remember when I said I love the parenthetical after? How they’re doorways to other poems? This month, I read H. Melt’s On My Way to Liberation and There Are Trans People Here which led me to other poems. One of them was Ross Gay’s “Sorry Is Not My Name,” from his collection Bringing the Shovel Down.
It didn’t stop there – the conversation H. Melt had with Ross Gay in their poem “Dysmorphia Is Not My Name” led me to the conversation he had with Gwendolyn Brooks.
While it is unnecessary – what am I saying?! It’s totally necessary! – you should read Gwendolyn Brooks’ “To the Young Who Want to Die” before following along with Ross Gay’s poem.
And while you’re at it, pick up copies for H. Melt’s work. Because honestly, their words are powerful and important to the conversation at large. Especially with the laws being passed and pushed in Florida, Texas and every red state. I haven’t been able to find any recordings of them reading their work (as of this writing).