Terrance Hayes - American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin

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Monday, July 16, 2018 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Written during the first two hundred days of the Trump presidency, these charged sonnets mark “the umpteenth slump / In our humming democracy, a bumble bureaucracy.” Angry, sarcastic, and playful, Hayes explores, reinterprets, and riffs on the meanings of “American,” “assassin,” and “future.” Notable Americans he turns to include James Baldwin, Amiri Baraka, and Toni Morrison, but he also has to reckon with “James Earl Ray Dylann Roof... /…George Zimmerman John Wilkes Booth.”  The author of acclaimed books including Hip Logic, How to Be Drawn, and the National Book Award-winning Lighthead, Hayes has consistently been one of the most innovative and technically accomplished poets, and here he brilliantly reinvents the Renaissance sonnet as a specifically “American sonnet that is part prison,/part panic closet …/that is part music box, part meat/grinder,” because, as he says, “when the wound/ is deep, the healing is heroic.”


5015 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
Fiction & Poetry
American Sonnets for My Past and Future Assassin (Penguin Poets) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780143133186
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Penguin Books - June 19th, 2018

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