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:: This Week's Word on the Street ::  


“Samiya Bashir’s FIELD THEORIES is science as only poetry can be. She’s done herresearch and now she rethinks everything she gets her pen on: the relationship of dark matter to the sun, the possibilities of the heroic crown of sonnets, Keatsian aesthetics, social re- and inter-actions, and language itself. These poems are alive, are woman-truth, are burning darkly. Grab your shades. No: fire up your magnetosphere. This book is “black body radiation,” and you can’t handle it - but you’ve got to.”


- three -

"This is the world spinning in the vast dark."

|| movement by keyon gaskin + filmed with Roland Dahwen Wu & Patua Films ||

What a treat it was in January to have this beautiful broadside of my poem, "When I say radiation I mean, light that you cannot contain," which appears in FIELD THEORIES, originally published by Tuesday; An Art Project, Issue 6.2.

Publication date: March 1st, 2017

Nightboat Books
Distributed by UPNE (
Paper $15.95
ISBN: 978-1-937658-63-2
6.25 x 8 in 128 pages Poetry
Publicity contact:
Stephen Motika at or 718-930-1062

These poems span lyric, narrative, dramatic, and multi-media experience, engaging their containers while pushing against their constraints
Field Theories wends its way through quantum mechanics, chicken wings, Newports, and love, melding blackbody theory (idealized perfect absorption vs. the whitebody’s idealized reflection) with live Black bodies. 

Woven through experimental lyrics is a heroic crown of sonnets that wonders about love, intent, identity, hybridity, and how we embody these interstices.

Albert Murray said, “the second law of thermodynamics ain’t nothin but the blues.” So what is the blue of how we treat each other, ourselves, and the world, of how the world treats us?
Samiya Bashir’s books of poetry: Field Theories (Spring 2017), Gospel, and Where the Apple Falls, and anthologies, including Role Call: A Generational Anthology of Social & Political Black Literature & Art, exist.

Sometimes she makes poems of dirt.

Sometimes zeros and ones.

Sometimes variously rendered text.

Sometimes light.

She lives in Portland, Ore, with a magic cat who shares her obsessions with trees and blackbirds and occasionally crashes her classes and poetry salons at
Reed College.
Samiya Bashir
Photo Credit: Kenan Banks
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