Winner of the 2021 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry
Finalist for the 2020 National Book Award for Poetry
Finalist for the 2020 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry
Finalist for the 2020 Forward Prize for Best Collection
Postcolonial Love Poem, the brilliant second collection from Natalie Diaz, holds in its pages the urgent appeal for all bodies―bodies of lovers, family, enemies, as well as of language and rivers and land―to be held dearly. In her lyrical landscape, Diaz tenderly prods the wounds inflicted by America onto its Indigenous peoples. When she states “Let me call my anxiety, desire, then. / Let me call it, a garden,” Diaz allows for the sensation of pleasure to be found in pain; in asserting the autonomy found within desire, the poet simultaneously enables the bodies of Indigenous, Latinx, black, and brown women to be both political and euphoric; and by forcing language to its limits, place is imbued with joy and grief, sensuality and destruction.
In this collection, Natalie Diaz opens up and confronts the conditions from which she writes, embracing bodies like hers and those she loves which have been diminished and erased. As Postcolonial Love Poem offers a picture of an America built on hope and the agency of our future choices, it is love Natalie Diaz offers most tenderly in her hands.
Natalie Diaz was born and raised in the Fort Mojave Indian Village in Needles, California, on the banks of the Colorado River. She is Mojave and an enrolled member of the Gila River Indian Tribe. Her first poetry collection, When My Brother Was an Aztec, won an American Book Award. Her second collection is Postcolonial Love Poem (2020). She is a 2018 MacArthur Fellow, as well as a Lannan Literary Fellow and a Native Arts Council Foundation Artist Fellow. She was awarded the Holmes National Poetry Prize and a Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University. She is a member of the Board of Trustees for the United States Artists, where she is an alumnus of the Ford Fellowship. Diaz is the Maxine and Jonathan Marshall Chair in Modern and Contemporary Poetry at Arizona State University.