‘To read Jericho Brown’s poems is to encounter devastating genius’ Claudia Rankine
Jericho Brown’s The New Testament is a devastating meditation on race, sexuality and contemporary American society by one of most important new voices in US poetry. In poems of immense clarity, lyricism and skill, Brown shows us a world where disease runs through the body, violence runs through the neighbourhood, and trauma runs through generations. Here Brown makes brilliant and subversive use of Bible stories to address the gay experience from both a personal and a political perspective. By refusing to sacrifice nuance, no matter how charged and urgent his subject, Brown is one of the handful of contemporary poets who has found a speech adequate to the complex times in which we live, and a way to express an equivocal hope for the future.
The New Testament was winner of the Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry and the Paterson Award for Literary Excellence, 2015.