My Darling from the Lions
“Rachel Long has miraculous command of the line, in all its trickery and grace and gasps, showcasing a truly refreshing voice with observant, deeply felt insight.” —Morgan Parker, author of Magical Negro
Named a Best Poetry Book of 2020 by The Guardian
Shortlisted for the Rathbones Folio Prize, the Costa Poetry Award, and the Forward Prize for Best First Collection
Each poem in Rachel Long’s award-winning My Darling from the Lions has a vivid story to tell—of family quirks, the perils of dating, the grip of religion, or sexual awakening—stories that are, by turn, emotionally insightful, politically conscious, wise, funny, and outrageous. Told in three sections, it’s a book about growing up, falling in love with not-great men, and girlhood; a collection that speaks to femininity, divinity, familial shame, Black identity, and modern culture.
Long reveals herself as a razor-sharp and original voice on the issues of sexual politics and cultural inheritance that polarize our current moment. With a fresh commitment to the power of the individual poem, her collection offers immediate, wide-awake poetry that entertains royally, without sacrificing a note of its urgency or remarkable skill.
My Darling from the Lions marks the arrival of a thrilling new voice and presence in poetry.
“Alive with a breathless energy.”
“The intimacy of her poetic voice enhances its power to disarm.”
—Times Literary Supplement
“An enchanting and heartwarming new voice in poetry.”
“A masterpiece. . . . Clarifyingly alive to the entire universe of a woman’s life.”
—Elaine Castillo, author of America Is Not the Heart