So We Can Know: Writers of Color on Pregnancy, Loss, Abortion, and Birth

Regular price $ 21.95

Edited by Aracelis Girmay

Haymarket Books

2/7/2023, paperback

SKU: 9781642598391


In this brave and devastatingly beautiful anthology, the illustrious poet and editor Aracelis Girmay gathers complex and intimate pieces that illuminate the nuances of personal and collective histories, analyses, practices, and choices surrounding pregnancy. Featuring the brilliant voices of writers such as Cheryl Boyce-Taylor, Patricia Smith, Elizabeth Alexander, and more, this book is a lighthouse--a tool and companion--for those navigating pregnancy, abortion, miscarriage, birth, loss, grief, and love. In this text, pieces range from essays to poems to interviews, with a broad entanglement of various themes, from many different perspectives including Black, Indigenous, Asian, Latinx, and more. At a time when people are becoming more and more limited in their choices surrounding pregnancy and abortion, this record is increasingly urgent and indispensable.


"Audre Lorde once told Joy Harjo that she imagined her poems being spoken to a circle of women gathered around a fire. In this book we find that gathering, a gathering of those of us who know our stories belong to each other. And the fire that calls us is the very fire of creation moving through us and changing us all. I recommend this book to everyone. Come for the warmth of communion, stay for the miracle of never being the same." -- Alexis Pauline Gumbs, co-editor of Revolutionary Mothering: Love on the Frontlines

"So We Can Know is a striking anthology of essays, poetry, and visual art on the often-harrowing experience of pregnancy for women of color. The work as a whole is thick with grief and trauma, but the graceful reflections and breadth of experiences make sticking with it more than worthwhile. This one's not to be missed." -- Publishers Weekly Starred Review

"Sometimes, rarely, something we read is a fulcrum of healing. I must thank aracelis girmay and every writer who contributed to So We Can Know. Maraming salamat Terima kasih Thank you, for the courage in these harsh times, when guns have more rights than women, to put words on your experiences. In the spaces between these lines of word medicine, I felt heard, I felt accepted, I felt loved." -- Ibu Robin Lim, Grandmother & Midwife

About the Editor:

Aracelis Girmay is a poet and editor from Santa Ana, California. Her books include the black maria, Teeth, Kingdom Animalia, the collage-based picture book changing, changing, and she was the editor of How to Carry Water: Selected Poems of Lucille Clifton. A recipient of numerous grants, awards, and fellowships in support of her work from the Whiting Foundation, the NEA, the Cave Canem Foundation, and others, she is currently the Editor-at-Large of the Blessing the Boats Selections within BOA's American Poets Continuum Series.