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Natalie Diaz’s Postcolonial Love Poem has been awarded the Pulitzer Prize for poetry, and Percival Everett's Telephone has been named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for fiction.

Such Color

New and Selected Poems
Tracy K. Smith
Is the world intended for me? Not just me but
The we that fills me? Our shadows reel and dart.

Our blood simmers, stirred back. What if
The world has never had—will never have—our backs?

The world has never had—will never have—our backs.
Our blood simmers, stirred back. What if

The we that fills me, our shadows real and dark,
Is the world intended for me?

—from  “I Sit Outside in Low Late-Afternoon Light to Feel Earth Call to Me”
Celebrated for its extraordinary intelligence and exhilarating range, the poetry of Tracy K. Smith opens up vast questions. Such Color: New and Selected Poems, her first career-spanning volume, traces an increasingly audacious commitment to exploring the unknowable, the immense mysteries of existence. Each of Smith’s four collections moves farther outward: when one seems to reach the limits of desire and the body, the next investigates the very sweep of history; when one encounters death and the outer reaches of space, the next bears witness to violence against language and people from across time and delves into the rescuing possibilities of the everlasting. Smith’s signature voice, whether in elegy or praise or outrage, insists upon vibrancy and hope, even—and especially—in moments of inconceivable travesty and grief.

Such Color collects the best poems from Smith’s award-winning books and culminates in thirty pages of brilliant, excoriating new poems. These new works confront America’s historical and contemporary racism and injustices, while they also rise toward the registers of the ecstatic, the rapturous, and the sacred—urging us toward love as a resistance to everything that impedes it. This magnificent retrospective affirms Smith’s place as one of the twenty-first century’s most treasured poets.

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“Tracy K. Smith’s poetry is an awakening itself.” (Vogue)

About the Author

Tracy K. Smith
Credit: Rachel Eliza Griffiths
Tracy K. Smith is the author of Wade in the Water; Life on Mars, winner of the Pulitzer Prize; Duende, winner of the James Laughlin Award; and The Body’s Question, winner of the Cave Canem Poetry Prize. She is also the editor of an anthology, American Journal: Fifty Poems for Our Time, and the author of a memoir, Ordinary Light, which was a finalist for the National Book Award. From 2017 to 2019, Smith served as Poet Laureate of the United States. She teaches at Princeton University.
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Upcoming Events

VIRTUAL: Tracy K. Smith (WADE IN THE WATER) in conversation with Amanda Gorman, presented by the Los Angeles Times

LA Times Festival of Books in El Segundo, CAview map

5:30 PM Pacific / 7:30 PM Central / 8:30 PM Eastern. With Amanda Gorman. Tickets available upon purchase. Register here.

Tracy K. Smith reading from SUCH COLOR, presented by the Anderson Center's Books in the Barn series

Anderson Center in Red Wing, MNview map
This event is open to the public and is a pay-what-you-can admission. Admission is free to Anderson Center members and youth under 18. More info here.


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