My Rating: 5 Stars!
Publisher: Button Poetry
Publish Date: October 24th
Received: Netgalley provided an e-arc in exchange for an honest review
Still Can’t Do My Daughter’s Hair is the latest book by author William Evans, founder of Black Nerd Problems. Evans is a long-standing voice in the performance poetry scene, who has performed at venues across the country and been featured on numerous final stages, including the National Poetry Slam and Individual World Poetry Slam. Evans’ commanding, confident style shines through in these poems, which explore masculinity, fatherhood, and family, and what it means to make a home as a black man in contemporary America.
*subject to change*
“If I say that I am an old man now, what I mean is that my daughter once pointed her finger at me and yelled, Bang, Daddy, you’re dead, and I fell down in a heap of my murdered youth and yelped in theater to her giggling applause, this time without tasting a friend’s blood spray against my profile or feeling the weight of his expiration fall against the summer of my fifteenth year, no longer picturing the mural of our collapse against the already red brick wall of a school that he never got to walk the halls of again.”
The hurt in this poetry is real. The sorrow of this poetry comes from outsiders blindness. The joy of this poetry is from the little things, the texture of the daughters hair, her smile, her light, her beauty. The worry of this poetry comes in hushed tones of a man in wife wondering how to tell their little girl that she lives in a world built to be against her. Worrying that one day the father will go out and never come back. The truth that that almost happened years before.
This poetry made me ache. It made me feel so sorrowful because we now live in Trump’s America and while racism was never a thing of the past that it is rising like a demon created to divide all of us… all of us human beings (of course we don’t always see that when we look at another human do we?)
This poetry also made me feel sorry, sorry because my skin is of the same skin that has formed this poetry’s hurt. Sorry because no matter how I feel I can’t change another’s hateful heart.
Read this poetry to understand another’s version of what it means to be alive. Read this poetry no matter who you are or what you believe, because this is the stuff we need to mend some of our brokenness.
Thanks for reading! Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.
-Till next time!