In January, Knopf published Gregory Pardlo’s Spectral Evidence. “Spectral evidence” is an actual legal term referring to “witness testimony that the accused person’s spirit or spectral shape appeared to him/her in a dream at the time the accused person’s physical body was at another location.” Huh? Yes, I am serious. And so is Pardlo. This kind of evidence was accepted during the Salem Witch Trials. Pardlo’s poems brilliantly explore this notion as he brings forward the fear of “the other” not only in terms of gender but also of race—America’s continual projection and demonization. Pardlo’s poems takes us through history, the big injustices alongside the microaggressions of today. Here is his wonderful poem “Theater Selfie.”

Congratulations, Gregory!

February 21


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Author: Denise Duhamel

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