Yomi Ṣode. Penguin. (128p) ISBN: 9780141998572

I was sent this out of the blue by some lovely marketer at Penguin Books and thank you whoever that marketer was as I loved this collection of poetry/works by Yomi Ṣodi.

As always I’m always in awe of poets and writers who bare all to the public in their work, but this is an especially personal journey through the life of a young black man in London and the death of an important matriarch and the emotions that erupt from both of these circumstances.

Initially I found this difficult due to some of writing being Yoruba, but after exploring the nuance of the words I didn’t know and getting a better idea of the contextual use of some of the phrases and how adaptable they were, I found the rhythm and heart of the writing stunning.

Entwining chapters about the violence that Caravaggio consistently displayed and got away with, and the violence expressed against black bodies that is constantly got away with, exploring different cultures and diasporas, different generations, white expectations of black bodies, behaviours men are meant to display and what men still feel under all the braggadocio.

Stunning writing full of passion and anger, an awe inspiring exploration of self and culture that shines the light on places we don’t always want to explore.

Bottom Ko-Fi

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