Nayyirah Waheed is black writer girl magic. A multilingual poet of words capable of melting anyone’s heart and sharpening it in the same instance, this amazing scribe has become one of my favorites in a manner of hours. Taking the time to enjoy the second anniversary of her 2013 published poetry collection salt. this past week, I quickly downloaded a free e-book copy of some of her work (thanks to Amazon).
As I dedicated the weekend to self-care, naturally poetry was my first go-to. Scrolling through my Mac’s Kindle app, I find the recently downloaded collection and open it. Two poems in and I’m in love all over again. It’s incredible what words can do and how they can make you feel. Though I won’t go into every one of her pieces, here are 3 reasons to get and to love salt.
1.) It’s concise.
even the small poems mean something.
they are often whales in the bodies of tiny fish.
As a creative that often finds himself being fairly lengthy, Waheed writes about life in simple and elegant poems that many readers will be happy to find don’t take up an entire page. Managing to give just enough to leave you full after reading, she flourishes in pouring just the right amount. In a succinct and eloquent manner, salt. could easily be considered a masterclass on how less is more.
2.) It’s raw and powerful.
my english is broken.
have to try harder to understand
breaking this language
you so love
is my pleasure.
in your arrogance
you presume that i want your skinny language.
that my mouth is building a room for
in the back of my throat.
it is not.
– i have seven different words for love. you
have only one. that makes a lot of sense.
Though it can be hard for some writers to accurately put pure, believable emotion in their pieces, Waheed is definitely not one of them that struggles with this. Using acute language with the precision of a newly sharpened blade, this scribe transforms being vulnerable into a strength and power of an unmatched caliber. If ever challenged to do so, I would never want to face her in a war of wits, words and probably even fists for that matter.
3.) It’s unapologetic.
you still want to travel to
you could not take a camera with you.
– a question of appropriation
Whether checking white folk on their privilege or expressing her adventures in love, Waheed stands proudly through her art. Choosing her words carefully to be create a clearly defined point, no matter the topic, readers will never have to question her rooted foundation in her stances on love, race, culture, or her abilities. In fact, if you do, chances are she’ll have told you by the end of the book.
A prime example of poetic excellence and work that would go well with anyone’s library of contemporary poetry as well as daily motivational tweets and encouragement reading, Waheed is definitely an artist on her way to joining the ranks of greatness. You can find salt., her follow up collection nejma and more of Nayyirah Waheed’s work on her website, www.nayyirahwaheed.com and on Amazon.