I didn’t want to do this, not initially at least. I really thought that after sending in my manuscript someone would read my poems and be like damn she’s good AF, because I AM GOOD AF. But that hasn’t happened. Instead I’d open rejection email after rejection email tryna front like it’s not that painful...
but it whomps.
So, I decided to post my poems on my own social media sites to at least get some of my words out there while still submitting, submitting, submitting.
But then I went to this poetry reading, and one of the poets was like, nobody will publish the work you already posted online, since it’s technically published already. And I was like, seriously?
So, that eliminated even more chances of me making some coindollas for my writing, and everyone deserves to get paid for labor, yes, even creative labor can I get an amen?
Don’t let me get on my “exposure” rant cause there ain’t no way all that free labor is ever gonna make me the first jessica edwards to pop up on the google.
So anyway, I decided to do it my dang self. I put all the poems I’ve written in the past couple years that I didn’t ball up in the corner or hoard away for another amazing upcoming project *raps summer sixteen*, into one collection, and I’m quite proud of it.
The tears over formatting issues and the fact that I had negative money (still do but the Lawd will fix it soon), but still needed to pay for yet another proof and then build this website were real... too real. phew lawdamercy.
But here it is.
I’ve always written about my displeasure with this world pretty openly, even back when I was a youngin. If you saw my poems and monologues in high school in front of the world’s deadest audience for our black history month productions, which always sparked the most controversial meetings for worship (Quaker school -- check my bio), you know what I’m talking about. With time I’ve fine tuned my language, but still kept the message.
It is densely packed, and full of metaphors and alliteration, but the frank depiction of the real world is what this collection leaves you with: the anger and frustration from all the black lives we’ve seen taken right before our eyes on looped videos, the reality of experiencing trauma and trying to still live and love, and a good ole middle finger to the media which proves brother malcolm’s quotation true:
This mess is everywhere, and the best way for me to release is with my words- hence: lyrical catharsis.