Publication Date: 02/11/2023 ISBN: 9781802061932 Category:


Yomi Sode

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publication Date: 02/11/2023 ISBN: 9781802061932 Category:
Paperback / Softback


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‘A wonder of a collection’ Caleb Azumah Nelson
‘Thrilling … once-in-a-generation’ Jackie Kay
‘Genius … tells a thousand stories in stunningly crafted verse’ Nikita Gill
‘Remarkable, textured … Yomi Sode is a beautiful storyteller’ Candice Carty-Williams
‘Heartbreaking … This debut is the living heart and soul of contemporary poetry’ Pascale Petit
‘Vivid, beautiful and deeply moving’ Rt Hon Diane Abbott MP
‘Yomi Sode writes with clarity, anger and love’ Andrew Graham-Dixon
‘Searing, shimmering, brilliant’ Yrsa Daley-Ward
‘A must for all lovers of poetry and its power’ Roger Robinson
‘Manorism is a classic’ Caleb Femi

Impassioned, insightful, electric, Manorism is a poetic examination of the lives of Black British men and boys: propped up and hemmed in by contemporary masculinity, deepened by family, misrepresented in the media, and complicated by the riches, and the costs, of belonging and inheritance. It is also an exploration of the differences of impunity afforded to white and Black people, and to white and Black artists.

Caravaggio – originally, unexpectedly – looms large: as a man who moved between spheres of exalted patronage and petty criminality; as a painter who, amid the elegant conventions of late Mannerism, forged his own style of visceral dark and light; and as an individual whose recognized genius was allowed to legitimate and excuse his violence.

In this profound and moving debut, Yomi Sode asks: what does it mean to find oneself between worlds – to ‘code-switch’, adapting one’s speech and manners to widely differing cultural contexts? Who is, and who isn’t, allowed to be more than their origins? And what do we owe each other? What do we owe ourselves?

Publisher Review

Manorism is a wonder of a collection. Yomi writes into the space where silence has been enforced, with language so dexterous it sings, with an honesty that is as sure as it is vulnerable. Throughout the collection, he gives language to grief, acute and enormous. He speaks not only to the moments we might falter in the face of our mourning but also to how we might rebuild, how we might not only survive those who pass, but thrive. What a joy it is to hold these words -- Caleb Azumah Nelson, author of OPEN WATER The mandem, mourning, mores and manners - Yomi Sode's Manorism is a thrilling new world to inhabit. Tender, lyrical, questioning, fierce, these poems make you think about the world we live in and how we treat the black men in it . . . This is one of those books that comes along once in a generation and influences generations to come -- Jackie Kay, author of RED DUST ROAD and former Makar of Scotland Yomi Sode writes with clarity, anger and love. Manorism reminds me of the paintings of Caravaggio. Empathy and chiaroscuro. More shadow than light. But that is the way of the world -- Andrew Graham-Dixon, author of CARAVAGGIO: A LIFE SACRED AND PROFANE Vivid, beautiful and deeply moving. Yomi Sode is a gifted storyteller who pours everything into this sharp and brilliant exploration of Black British masculinity in all its complexity -- Rt Hon Diane Abbott MP Searing, shimmering, brilliant. As hard to swallow as it is to put down. -- Yrsa Daley-Ward, author of THE HOW A remarkable, textured education in what it means to be made up of different parts, of light and dark places, and of worlds that we know, and that we don't. Yomi Sode is a beautiful storyteller who pieces it all together -- Candice Carty-Williams, author of PEOPLE PERSON I don't think I've ever read such a heartbreaking collection as this angry but deeply vulnerable and tender portrait of Black masculinity. Manorism rages, yet plays with its urgent themes, mixing Yoruba with colloquial speech in a luscious mix of registers and references, from Caravaggio to Mr Marcus, inventing new ways to describe generational trauma and what it's like to endure racism. This debut is the living heart and soul of contemporary poetry -- Pascale Petit, author of TIGER GIRL In his juxtapositions of paintings, black urban life and media, he makes us think of what poetry can be: that the book itself is the poem, and each topic a stanza in a bigger epiphany ... A must for all lovers of poetry and its power -- Roger Robinson, author of A PORTABLE PARADISE When I speak of justice and anger written with luminous genius, I will forever be speaking of Yomi Sode's Manorism, a glorious, furious collection that tells a thousand stories in stunningly crafted verse. A triumph that everyone should read -- Nikita Gill, author of GREAT GODDESSES and WILD EMBERS Manorism is a stunning debut collection. Yomi Sode's poems examine the various lenses observing the black body in Britain, the implications of its passage between class, cultural and racial spaces. His words are indelible . . . rich with images that shake your core and a sharpness in its technicality. Manorism is a classic -- Caleb Femi, author of POOR Manorism is a work of sincerity that cuts deep. It's a work that is at once comprehensive and incredibly personal. Reading it I felt my heartbeat change pace, faster and slower. The book is about families, society, being Black in Britain, being a cousin, a nephew, a son and the hope for the future that being a father brings. Yomi is a griot, a voice in which we can hear the ancestors, a voice for now and a prophet of future possibilities -- Arike Oke, Executive Director of Knowledge and Collections, BFI This is a such an important collection. Yomi Sode's debut articulates the most subtle nuances of Black British Masculinity with a breathtaking vulnerability. Truly, Manorism is something new - an interrogation of realities that have been too often ignored, through the lens of experiences that have been pushed into the margins . . . [It] bring[s] the full humanity of Blackness into the centre, through poetry that pushes at boundaries while inviting you in -- Jeffrey Boakye, author of I HEARD WHAT YOU SAID and BLACK, LISTED Manorism. A Black British Diasporic way of being. A sense of place. A posture . . . Yomi Sode interrogates this sociocultural phenomenon, looking at masculinity, intergenerational violence and historical legacy . . . This is a British continuation of the conversation Claudia Rankine started . . . These are necessary poems: poems as prayer songs, poems as testimony -- Malika Booker, author of PEPPER SEED A brilliant ode to the mandem -- Femi Oyeniran Manorism is filled with poetry of a breath held, a fist clenched and held behind the back, the knockout beckoning always. An ambitious and adventurous debut, brimming with heart -- Nii Ayikwei Parkes, author of TAIL OF THE BLUE BIRD The birth of a new poetic storyteller -- Nick Makoha, author of THE DARK Yomi is not ramping. This is a rich, nuanced, emotional collection. I read about myself and my people, felt an affinity in the expression of experiences we share and felt feelings only we feel. Thank you for this, Yomi -- Jade LB, author of KEISHA THE SKET Both sharp-eyed and rich with complex feeling, Manorism is an exquisite collection -- Nadia Owusu, author of AFTERSHOCKS Part-confession, part-conjuring and wholly unique, Yomi Sode's debut collection is unflinching. As he writes, "Our stories are open wounds." ?ode takes us on a visceral journey, spilling secrets nakedly, not allowing us to look away from the hard truth. And we're better for it -- Peter Kahn, author of LITTLE KINGS An incredibly poignant and layered collection that masterfully graduates from the past, roots us in the present and speaks to the ages all at once. Manorism is a striking, visceral voyage between cultures, languages and histories in ode to the precious lives of Black boys and men -- Sofia Akel I think one day, Yomi Sode's Manorism will be required reading for a generation of young Black men. [This book is h]is widescreen and expansive examination of what it's like to navigate the complexities of British society as a Black man. From the moments of triumph to those of bleak loss, Sode brings poetic brilliance to the collection's entire range of subject matter -- Athian Akec, Youth MP for Camden A breathtaking and tender exploration of Black boyhood, manhood, fatherhood and grief -- Aniefiok Ekpoudom A work of formal experimentation, where lyric essays nestle against play-let structures, in service of a Claudia Rankine-esque determination to bear witness and find frameworks with which we can look at the world properly, fully ... Brilliant ... It's like fireworks going off ... Sode is unflinching and fearless ... Manorism's real gift to us as readers is, ultimately, Sode's deep and unfailing humanity. This is a book in which love can be found -- Rishi Dastidar * Poetry School Blog * Yomi Sode's Manorism has both its feet planted firmly on the ground - but as a collection, it spends much of its existence split between various opposing worlds of imagination: Black and white, past and present, peaceful and chaotic . . . It forces readers to question what violence we consider beautiful, which victims worthy of framing and hanging on a white wall? . . . Manorism cuts to the quick, openly daring readers to look at the blood spilled within its pages . . . [It] gleams like a whittled blade -- Ariana Benson * Magma Poetry *

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