29 January 2017
salt. by Nayyirah Waheed
Salt is a journey through warmth and sharpness. This collection of poetry explores the realities of multiple identities, language, diasporic life & pain, the self, community, healing, celebration, and love.
salt. is a self-published book of poems about the experience of being a woman of color, an African-american woman, of African descent, an immigrant, loving an immigrant, of ancestry. A few poems hit back hard at tourism by affluent whites to the poorer, browner areas of the world. I know very little about Nayyirah Waheed herself, her website and Goodreads Author page have no biographical information, so I have to read and interpret these poems without any knowledge of her influences. These poems are stark and raw but also beautiful. Waheed has taken great care not just with her imagery but also with the structure of these poems. Her line breaks are very precisely placed.
And now I come to the rub of publishing. I had to read this wonderful book via kindle app since there doesn't seem to be a way to get this elsewhere except from Amazon. Even my well-stocked, very-up-on-what's-popular-and-relevant local public library doesn't have a copy in either ebook or print. I have tried to order the book through my store's distributors - because we can order CreateSpace books if/when we can - but according to the distributor it isn't available anymore. However, checking the actual CreateSpace site reveals that the book is available to order and that CreateSpace is an Amazon subsidiary.... This is why I included the BN link above. Because of whatever decision made behind the scenes at Amazon/CreateSpace I have no way of getting paperback copies of salt. into my store to push into customers' hands. And I want to push this at everyone who comes in looking for Milk and Honey and Citizen because salt. should reach just as many readers as those books can. So please publishers, offer Waheed a P2P contract. She has a gift.