Dispatch (whose title means haste, and finality, and news) is a tough book, a book that rarely says life will get better, for Awkward-Rich or for people like him. It is, perhaps, a book of Afro-pessimism ... This strong book’s weakest moments seem to imitate, rather than build on, earlier black writers ... The strongest moments, though, involve solidarity—with other black writers and readers, other radical millennials, other trans people ... Awkward-Rich doesn’t just speak to other mutants; he speaks for them as well ... The tersely wrought leadoff poem makes almost comically literal the dangers that come with not being seen ... Awkward-Rich finds a way to sound stark but never bare ... Longer lines, more detail, would say less than these curt figures do. The poems stop short, cut themselves off, speak slowly and deliberately, because they know they, like him, will be misunderstood[.]
The poems refuse to shy away from gendered and racial violence in the United States. And while of course, the specter of the current president must hover over poetry that concerns itself with the current political climate, Awkward-Rich does not name him, save for one fleeting moment ... Amidst the violence and pain of the American past and present, Dispatch is interested in moments of levity or at least gesturing toward it ... Awkward-Rich also grounds and interrogates corporal existence through a variety of poetic forms, ranging from couplets to quatrains to erasure poems ... maybe then, Dispatch is not meant to mean kill at all, rather to send something off to a destination, or for a purpose.
... [a] powerful second collection ... Weighed down by the 'brutal choreography' of violence against black, queer, and trans bodies, the poet reestablishes buoyancy through will and formidable artistry ... In these poems of bracing clarity, national violence is unflinchingly and meaningfully confronted.