dot Martydom

The Present Work

Language Makes Plastic of the Body

The Nines

Things of Each

Birds of LA

An Educated Heart


Workers of the World Unite and Fight!

Armies of Compassion Martyrdom

Anne Waldman

Poetry | 2009 | 32 pages | $15.00 | ISBN: 978-0-9789262-7-4 | Saddle-sewn binding


With no small amount of “investigative rage,” Anne Waldman quickens the nerve fiber by which language so binds us to social action as to recast victim-status and noble death in light of car bombings and global capital’s “free trade of bodies.” Martyrdom begins and ends in present-day Umbria to look back at the Cretaceous-Tertiary event, “the asteroid or impact that led to the extinction of the dinosaurs.” That doomsday past lends longer historical views to measure the present delirious life in which we are all married to figures of the terrorist. An uncompromising assessment of emancipative politics and the doubtful certainties of poetry—Mansur Al-Hallaj, Santa Teresa of Avila, Ernesto Cardinal—to ask what desire has “to do with the subject of martyr? / [when] everyone has a price for suicide.”

— Roberto Tejada

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