We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics

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$22.95  $21.34
Nightboat Books
Publish Date
6.0 X 9.0 X 1.3 inches | 1.4 pounds

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About the Author

Kay Gabriel is a poet and essayist. She's the author of Elegy Department Spring / Candy Sonnets 1 (BOAAT Press, 2017), the recipient of fellowships from Lambda Literary and the Poetry Project, and recently completed her PhD at Princeton University.

Andrea Abi-Karam is an arab-american genderqueer punk poet-performer cyborg, writing on the art of killing bros, the intricacies of cyborg bodies, trauma & delayed healing. Their chapbook, THE AFTERMATH (Commune Editions), attempts to queer Fanon's vision of how poetry fails to inspire revolution. Andrea's first book, EXTRATRANSMISSION (Kelsey Street Press, 2019), is a poetic critique of the U.S. military's role in the War on Terror.


"'shit, what the hell/ have I built, ' writes Zavé Gayatri Martohardjono in a poem featured in this exciting and frank anthology of works by trans writers...This anthology imagines poetry as a resource by which the community might stand 'against capital and empire, ' using language to reimagine collective struggle."--Publishers Weekly

"The revolution may not be televised, but if you ask Andrea Abi-Karam and Kay Gabriel, co-editors of We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics, it will most definitely be sexy. A hundred times hotter than anything you're likely to catch on Netflix, Abi-Karam and Gabriel's anthology demonstrates that trans liberation can be felt through the ecstatic joining of policed bodies..."--them

"While this book is for anyone invested in trans literature and (political) literature in general - writers, students, and teachers - in and out of the academy, I believe the primary audience for the anthology is trans poets - searching for lineage and for kin."--Autostraddle

"We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics (Nightboat Books, October 2020), edited by Andrea Abi-Karam and Kay Gabriel, engages and interrogates poetry as a means of trans liberation. Offerings from poets such as Ching-In Chen and Aaron El Sabrout 'pursue the particular and multiple trans relationships to desire, embodiment, housing, sex, ecology, history, pop culture, and the working day.'"--Poets & Writers: The Anthologist

"We Want It All is fecund. It is full-to-bursting with sex and intimacy, mischief and wonder. It is fiendish and puckish and sweet and caring and hot and burn-it-to-the-motherfucking-ground. It is, in short, a behemoth of a book dedicated to imagining a collective, genderful world. For me, as a trans writer, it felt like being nestled into a queer bar or knee-to-knee at a Bluestockings reading or arm-in-arm chanting words of protest in Washington Square Park. Which is to say: it felt like being in community."--Guernica

"This collection is impressive in scope, style, and time, including intergenerational poets on everything from work to sex to pop culture. This is the kind of book you can pick up and read a few selections from, and be reminded that trans identity, like all identity, is vast and beautiful."--Shondaland

"Anthologies, like canons, often fall apart when looked at with any sincerity. The intention to encapsulate poets of a specific identity often fails in one or more respects due to the multitudes they contain. Andrea Abi-Karam and Kay Gabriel, co-editors of We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics, take up this problem of representation -- specifically of trans lives... These are poems that do not compromise."--Hyperallergic

"If there's one thing I can get behind, it's more trans voices and/or gender fuckery in literature, always. This stunner of an anthology brings together an intergenerational mix of poets who expertly write/graffiti on that (imaginary) line of the personal and the political by exploring love, work, bodies, social justice movements, rage, tenderness, and pop culture. With creativity and insight, the poems in this collection are truly a rich tapestry that belongs on the shelf next to editor Christopher Soto's Neplantla: Queer Poets of Color (which was also released by Nightboat, thank you Nightboat!)."--Literary Hub's Bookmarks

"Nightboat's anthology We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics gave me everything I wanted and more, the perfect supplement as I started my hormone transition journey. The Zoom reading was one of the best virtual events I attended in quarantine--a riotous joy fest with a veritable who's who of the genderqueer literati."--Poetry Foundation Harriet Staff

"If you're looking for it, this book is a guide that will teach you the ways in which we continue to fight, that will remind you that the fight is important and that there's no room for complacency. That there's a future here that isn't only ours for the taking, but ours for the making as well, that we are able to reach out and touch each other, sustain each other, until the future that might now only exist on the horizon, is something we can hold in our hands, bringing it to life together."--Tripwire

"[Andrea] Abi-Karam and [Kay] Gabriel artfully curate a pioneering assemblage of work to showcase anticapitalist, ecological, and deeply personal verse, as stylistically dynamic and ranging as the trans community itself. Their emphasis on radical trans poetry sets an essential, unwavering stake against the systemic totality of gender oppression, with its too-few protections and even fewer allies across the broader sociopolitical landscape. At once violent and tender, We Want it All breaks open the gender binary with enigmatic force [...]"--Jacket2

"Groundbreaking and urgent, this collection features poems that investigate, interrogate and innovate trans relationships, embodiments, ecologies, emotions and expressions. It shines a much-needed light on the power of poetics in care, understanding and resistance."--Ms. Magazine

"We Want It All is a big, unwieldy, overflowing book--in this particular moment, there is a need for excess to respond to excess; to the smug American Horror Story of overblown, overglossed oppression and hatred... Whether you love a certain type of delicately opaque lyric, or a litany of facts and/or bodily functions and/or daily minutiae, or typographical experimentation, or heartfelt declarations of self-love and self-loathing, there is something here to linger over, to savor and even to overindulge."--The Anarchist Review of Books

"Come on over in whatever vehicles, in French, in Korean, in Chinese, in Electronics, in Transenglish, and so on. Here are some gorgeous scenes of open-ended retrofutural arrival, l'avenir (the future, time to "come"), rendered in commenstrualese. Wouldn't want to miss them." --Kyoo Lee, Jacket2

"This is an incredible and necessary collection of work that celebrates queerness and queer identity. The editors put it succinctly, stating in the introduction, 'The title of this volume is therefore entirely literal. What we want is nothing other than a world in which everything belongs to everyone.'"--Luna Luna Magazine

"This book means so much to so many of us. The choice for the word Radical in the title is why I trusted the editors from the beginning. Radical as in, we care that much to be outside the respectable world. As though there was ever a choice, but still, care is there. I used this book as divination by asking it a question, then opening and closing it 9 times. These poets gave me the weird answers I needed. As Trish Salah told me two days in a row, "Is there a dare, a bid for love, a survival equation / lust for life unburdened of fear's repetition?""--CA Conrad

"Encompassing not just the United States but English-language writers from a multitude of other countries and backgrounds, this anthology is clearly impressive, and a foundational collection of exactly what it declares itself to be. If you are interested in where writing is going, or what conversations on writing you should be considering, We Want It All: An Anthology of Radical Trans Poetics is a book of endless possibilities."--rob mclennan

"Reading Sensoria alongside We Want It All proved fruitful, even at the outset both introductions set up the parameters: Wark wants us to consider the production of theory as an end in itself: 'a free and self-directed inquiry that takes its own time.' Contrast this with Abi-Karam and Gabriel's intro: 'We believe that poetry can do things that theory can't, that poetry leaps into what theory tends towards.' I felt myself rewarding myself with a poem from the anthology after I got through a chapter of Sensoria, and each poem brought with it a direct or indirect correspondence."--A conversation between Emily Colucci and Jessica Caroline, Filthy Dreams

"The editors present this anthology as an experiment: how far can literature written and/or collected from a standpoint of identity. We see a new language and a new form to express the desire to shake the American public out of its lethargy. We see courage here as the writers face suffering. Pain is singular yet it reaches its targets one at a time. We live at a time of indifference and here we are reminded that each one of us is somehow responsible for everything that is done."--Amos Lassen