POETRY

bone

Penguin. Sept. 2017. 160p. ISBN 9780143132615. pap. $15; ebk. ISBN 9780525504528. POETRY
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Transmogrified to poet, what she really wanted, actress/model Daley-Ward had a big hit when she self-published this collection in 2014. In language that's frank, colloquial, and full of yearning, she deals with desire, friendship, sexual predation, and what it's like to be a queer first-generation black British woman. (Her mother is Jamaican and her father Nigerian.) "You are a beautiful/ danger" says the opening poem. "I should not enter./ But I might." And elsewhere: "According to you,/ people like me/ shouldn't go into places like this." Some of the pieces are more adage than fully developed verse, but Daley-Ward has rawness and heart as she expresses wholly relatable feelings.
VERDICT A bright, accessible work for readers beyond the poetry crowd.

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