Blood of the Air creates a new mythology, repurposing spectacle, stereotype, and song. Inspired by the fictions and frictions of the past, each poem in this collection complicates the next. Lush lyrical moments give way to fracture, vulnerability, and reinvention. The title poem-one of several found poems-calls attention to stories told in the wake of sexual violence. In “She Said,” the collection’s longest piece, language culled from the transcript of a seventeenth-century rape trial feels eerily familiar. Formally dexterous and refreshingly bold, the poems in Blood of the Air are urgent, moving, and fiercely imagined. Though blood can flow from the site of a wound, Codjoe seems to say, blood is also a sign of life.
Ama Codjoe is the author of the chapbook Blood of the Air, winner of the eighth annual Drinking Gourd Chapbook Poetry Prize, forthcoming from Northwestern University Press in April 2020. She received a 2017 Rona Jaffe Writer’s Award to support the completion of her forthcoming first collection, Iterations of Being. She is the recipient of a 2019 Creative Writing Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. She lives in New York City where she serves as visiting assistant professor of social justice and inclusion at The New School.
1 – Blood of the Air – Ama Codjoe (Northwestern University Press, 2020)
2 – The Cows – Lydia Davis (Sarabande Books, 2011)
3 – Pieces of Me – Ashley Jataun Moore Ellis (Independently published, 2020)
4 – On Imagination – Mary Ruefle (Sarabande Books, July 2017)
5 – The Animal After Whom Other Animals Are Named: Poems – Nicole Sealey (Northwestern University Press, 2016)
6 – The Tender Atrocities – Alec Ivan Fugate (Independently published, 2020)
7 – Love and Anarchy – Tyler R. Martin, Katie P. Wolffer (Independently published, 2020)
8 – A Gathering of Southern Literary Fiction – Bud Scott (Independently published, 2020)
9 – Automation, Man (Bold Machines) – Wayne Mason (Independently published, 2020)
10 – THE MANUAL – Godefroy Dronsart (Independently published, 2020)