Michelle K. Angwenyi’s Gray Latitudes is a body of poems that stretches language to its limit, the subtlety of which surprises the reader as if she wants you to depend on the weight of a word alone. Here is a rare gift that reminds readers of early Modernist women’s attempt to recreate language in ways never done before.Patricia Jabbeh Wesley, from the preface
Michelle K. Angwenyi
These are the elaborate one-sided goodbyes.
The learning to accept tea from strangers.
The voiceless convergence of winds.
A child half-known,
their distance half-known
Escaping the lovers of plants,
tender, soft-hearted, soft-footed,
their lone walks in museums,
the whisperings among fossils.
Their dedication to water,
The inhabitance of pale yellow.
The slowness of arrival. The always arriving.
The day, and its salt pillars.
And the sun, still water.