... interrogates the linguistics of being, the verb and noun of what it means to be human, as well as to be history, to be present and sexualized and loved, to be full and hollow. Tariq is asking, gorgeously, a question, and allows anyone to answer.
... startingly brash ... In poems that are electrified by the language of Black eroticism and the racist oppressor, Tariq effectively conveys the deep inner conflict felt by many African Americans ... This collection presents a brave voice in poetry, unapologetically honest and alarmingly astute.
... daring ... Tariq’s confessionalism can be direct or suggestively and wittily oblique ... Readers of Robin Coste Lewis will appreciate Tariq’s archival erasures, while Natasha Trethewey fans will appreciate a journey to South Carolina’s 'Ellis Island of Slavery' ... Reckoning with historical atrocities and making use of a variety of formal gestures, Tariq triumphs in creating his distinctive brand of blues.