“Oputa utilizes searing imagery and provocative language in her intimate and powerful debut.…This is an unapologetic collection that deflates romanticism about girlhood and exposes the ways in which innocence can act as a liability.” —Publishers Weekly
“I have been waiting for this book for a long time and I am still blown away by the shock of such an extraordinary new voice in the world of words and poems. Nothing can prepare a reader for the rigor and heart of Ife-Chudeni A. Oputa’s Rummage. These poems wrangle with queer existence and desire in a way I haven’t read before. How we rummage inside and with each other as a means of figuring out our bodies and place in the world. The love between women (erotic, familial, both at the same time) is deeply romantic in this book because it is also so hard, so impossible to express, and so often at odds with the world we live in. Gender is not a concept in this book. It is a living and changeable thing, and the reader must grapple with their own complicity in ‘rummaging’ for a definition, a vessel to put the body into. I am a student of this book. I am reader and read.” —Gabrielle Calvocoressi, author of Apocalyptic Swing: Poems and Rocket Fantastic: Poems
“A powerful debut, structured around four themes: shame, identity, physicality, and spirituality. ‘Kwansaba For My Mother’ is a seven-line wonder, the type of poem to read again and again to reflect on its weight.”—The Millions, Must-Read Poetry: August 2017
About the Author
Ife-Chudeni A. Oputa is a Cave Canem, Callaloo, and Lambda Literary fellow. Her poetry and prose have appeared or are forthcoming in Matter, Some Call It Ballin’, Gabby, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and elsewhere. She is a native of Fresno, California.