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DEADNAME

by Abhainn Connolly

So much of life is made of little deaths and rebirths. We all, at some point in our lives, are forced to leave a life or love behind; we must lose who we thought we were in favour of who we are. Often this ruptures, causing a mess. We don’t do it perfectly. In some stories we’re called the villain, and in others, the victim. 

 

What does it mean to be called something? And what does it mean to choose what you’re called? How do we hold the duality of harm and healing? What does it feel like to step into a reinvention of self, one that may not yet be fully structured? DEADNAME is a collection of poems that shares the coming of age of one trans and queer person in the new millennia, yet it echoes across all identities to show how embracing the liberating and revelatory act of queer love and transition can not only free queer people, but all of us.

Praise for DEADNAME

"You’re going to want to sit down for this, put down whatever else you’re reading and call in sick to work. DEADNAME is a pulsing, vibrant and necessary collection that heralds the vivid, visceral experience of heartbreak, joy, wonder, confusion and hope. Technically astute, creatively playful and emotionally honed - I am angry at how incredible these poems are, and that is the highest compliment I can offer." - Ciarán Hodgers, author of Cosmocartography

"Both fierce and delicate at once, this poetry collection is an exceptional celebration of queerness, grief, community, heartbreak, friendship and most of all - love. There is something of a cosmic beauty in Abhainn Connolly’s writing. Each poem is an occasion, perfectly weaving the relatable and magical in form, inviting the reader to witness an internal exploration of gender, and delight in a poet’s arrival home in themselves." - Stephanie Ní Thiarnaigh

"Abhainn Connolly's debut collection DEADNAME is a stunning excavation of the body, the self, the heart and all things loved by it. Connolly's writing is incredibly visceral, erotic, and tender; their poems seem to metabolize themselves, becoming both an undoing and a homecoming. I will be thinking about this book for a long time." - Sierra DeMulder, author of Ephemera

“DEADNAME blows apart a mainstream preference for clean edges by embracing jagged truths. In Connolly’s work, coming of age and coming out as trans do not signal the end, but the ongoing process: This beautiful, messy becoming is in turns delicate and tender, then ferocious and all-consuming. This journey will appeal to every person who wishes to be seen and held in all their imperfections. It is an ode to the scars — all the lovers, pups, car rides with dad — that mark us, make us whole." - Demi Anter, author of Small Machine

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