Trace Evidence

Longlist, National Book Awards 2023 for Poetry

book cover for Trace Evidence
ISBN 9781953534668
Tin House Books
Author photo of Charif Shanahan. (Photo credit: Rachel Eliza Griffiths)
Charif Shanahan

Charif Shanahan is the author of Trace Evidence and Into Each Room We Enter without Knowing, a finalist for both the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry and Publishing Triangle’s Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry. More about this author >

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From the publisher:

In Trace Evidence, the urgent follow-up to his award-winning debut Into Each Room We Enter without Knowing, Charif Shanahan continues his piercing meditations on the intricacies of mixed-race identity, queer desire, time, mortality, and the legacies of anti-Blackness in the US and abroad. At the collection’s center sits “On the Overnight from Agadir,” a poem that chronicles Shanahan’s survival of a devastating bus accident in Morocco, his mother’s birth country, and ruminates on home, belonging, and the mysteries of fate. With rich lyricism, power, and tenderness, Trace Evidence centers the racial periphery and excavates the vestiges of our violent colonial past in the most intimate aspects of our lives. In a language yoked equally to the physical and metaphysical worlds, the poet articulates the need we all share for real intimacy and connection, and proves, time and again, that the true cost of our separateness is the love that our survival requires.