Hanif Abdurraqib


Hanif Abdurraqib is a poet, essayist, and cultural critic from Columbus, Ohio. His poetry has been published in Muzzle, Vinyl, PEN American, and various other journals. His essays and music criticism have been published in The FADER, Pitchfork, The New Yorker, and The New York Times. His first full length poetry collection, The Crown Ain't Worth Much, was released in June 2016 from Button Poetry. It was named a finalist for the Eric Hoffer Book Prize, and was nominated for a Hurston-Wright Legacy Award. With Big Lucks, he released a limited edition chapbook, Vintage Sadness, in summer 2017 (you cannot get it anymore and he is very sorry.) His first collection of essays, They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us, was released in winter 2017 by Two Dollar Radio and was named a book of the year by Buzzfeed, Esquire, NPR, Oprah Magazine, Paste, CBC, The Los Angeles Review, Pitchfork, and The Chicago Tribune, among others. He released Go Ahead In The Rain: Notes To A Tribe Called Quest with University of Texas press in February 2019. The book became a New York Times Bestseller, was a finalist for the Kirkus Prize, and was longlisted for the National Book Award. His second collection of poems, A Fortune For Your Disaster, was released in 2019 by Tin House, and won the 2020 Lenore Marshall Prize. In 2021, he will release the book A Little Devil In America with Random House. He is a graduate of Beechcroft High School. Source

It's Just That I'm Not Really Into Politics

violence begets more / violence / or so I've been told / but all of this country's skyscrapers / are still standing / despite the blood / that builds a boat underneath the tongue / after speaking its name / violence begets / more photo opportunities / at the feet of a burning / temple / I show up to the resistance / and someone hands me a rose / the color of surrender / violence begets thirst / a new thing in need / of clean water / once / towards the black / and spotted sky / I raised a fist / inside of a glove / sewn in a country / torn apart by our bombs / I purchased the gloves in a store / after midnight / from a cashier who wore a picture / of her daughter on her chest / and looked as though she might have been crying / before I arrived / violence begets a hunger for warmth / at all costs / I sit in a running car / and count all of the things / yet to be swallowed / by the horned ghosts of empire / If you make your own prison / you can find your own map / to freedom / the smoke from all our engines / is beckoning the sun / close / the oceans are rising / to the height of a child / sitting on a mother's shoulders / pointing to the horizon with a single / trembling / finger





Literary Movements:


Anthology Years:





Violence & War

Literary Devices:


the repetition of the same letter or sound at the beginning of words appearing in succession


a comparison between two unrelated things through a shared characteristic

Varied Punctuation

diverse use of punctuation.