leave anything - ismael luna

leave anything - ismael luna



32 Pages
5.8" x 8.3" 
Ltd. Edition of 100
Release Date: December 12, 2016

Winner of the 2015 Best Prize, selected by Ginger Ko

Looming behind piles of discarded waste, ismael luna’s leave anything weaves a lyric of survival cloaked in a faded tapestry of yellows and browns, wilted flowers, fake flowers, the smell of attics and pink soap. Here, we exist in the “unavoidable smallness” of a reality that is unwelcoming. How waste and beauty mirror each other. How cultural violence is normalized. But though the spreads of this chapbook appear sparse they are never quiet—we are commanded to listen, to watch words interact across pages, to read and feel the power of language, and of intersecting hybrid languages, to grow, create, and keep on living: “we are more / than mantles of / trauma.”

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"This book was written for all of us, and will be burning you even if you don’t believe how much you need this book. I want to offer you this book with a pride that verges on gloating—I want to be the one to bring it to you to discover, to let you in on the elusive fire, the transformed trash, the flowers in disguise. At the same time, the beauty of these trim poems is ancillary to the ethics of ismael luna’s testament to white supremacy and anti-queerness and the execution of oppressions: "did they speak/set on fire/did they//make a/spectacle did/we get ill to/our stomachs did//you post here/because you could go/nowhere else." If you are chilled it is because the climate of this country is unsparing. If you are devastated it is because you already know this, the way these poems already know this. The lines of this book are skeletal because they are unoccupied—they were written in the future looking back at the fuckery of our present. luna’s missives predict us."

-Ginger KoMotherlover and Inherit

"ismael luna's poetry flows borderlessly—Spanish and English mingle throughout verses that refuse to be formally defined—and by extension invites its readers to be as fluid. These poems affirm that we can curve, 'full of grace,' before we crack under history's weight. leave anything is astream-of-consciousness dreamscape, at once ethereal and self-aware. It contains 'ancestral knowledge,' 'the / camp on fire,' and 'a murciélago up there, / dying.' But between the candid revelations leave anything offers there are also 'oiled / blessings.' This gorgeous chapbook is a meditation on grief, a celebration of survival, and a declaration of selfhood that can't help but bless its reader."

-Irène Mathieuorogeny

"ismael luna’ s leave anything is a sad shine. A geologic, anti-colonial, trans-national, queer, deceptively controlled, banger of a chapbook.  If 'grief...loses / meaning / inside your / mouth / becomes a / wad of / chewed up / receipts,' these poems await you, reader. These spare poems, these lakes of  'oiled / blessings,' resist this 'saddened colonial ritual.' Even when moving against the 'whole spectacle of / nationalism,' luna reminds us that “we are more than mantles of trauma” and they are right."

-Kamden HilliardPerceived Distance From Impact and Distress Tolerance

"ismael luna has crafted gem after gem of brilliant precision, culled from moments of intensity, sharp longing, transition, memory, and open tender rage. Their work darts through moment after raw moment following the 2015 Paris tragedy, widening its scope to capture global injustice in the same movement as personal, visceral release. Each body in leave anything bears its historical weight as its speaker witnesses its truths. It is a fresh and unflinching critique as much as it is a bodily paean fashioned in language, briefly shining until it too, dissipates like smoke. What a gorgeous debut to bring into this urgent moment."

-Vanessa Angelica VillarrealBeast Meridian