Have You Seen This Man?: The Castro Poems of Karl Tierney

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Product Details

$18.00  $16.56
Sibling Rivalry Press, LLC
Publish Date
5.83 X 0.3 X 8.27 inches | 0.38 pounds
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About the Author

Bryan Borland is the author of the American Library Association-honored MY LIFE AS ADAM and the Library Journal-honored ASSARACUS. He is the owner and publisher of Sibling Rivalry Press.


The expansive, posthumous debut from Tierney (1956-1995) considers the myriad ways that everyday experience is politically charged. "It's not easy to propel one's spirit through this/ nocturnal society," he warns, as he documents and humanizes the AIDS crisis. "You won't have to think yourself a victim," he writes, "of talentless pretty-/ boy actors who become Presidents after losing their looks." Though unified by their revolutionary sensibility, the poems in this historically significant volume broach an impressive array of challenging subjects, among them death, acts of God, and vanity. This capacious sensibility allows him to achieve a complex portrait of the community for which he advocates: "Words like lesion, bile, pneumocystis have battled and won over your tongue," he writes in "After His Death." Much of the work proves as formally conservative as it is groundbreaking in its content, and this pairing of sensibilities proves highly readable. "I lose myself in conforming," Tierney writes, as though reflecting on the docile presentation of these politically charged narratives. This book provides an overdue introduction to an important voice in American poetry. - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY STARRED REVIEW


Have You Seen This Man? is staunchly against the possibility of forgetting: not only what happened and who died and how it felt but also how some of those in power who withheld care and compassion are still revered. But Tierney also reminds us that, despite mass death and suffering, despite terminal diagnoses and an entire queer way of life changing forever, life continued. Tierney's poetry offers a language of everyday resistance, of continuing to be oneself despite even the most apocalyptic forces. All of us are alive, after all--even the sickest and most threatened--until we aren't. - POETRY FOUNDATION