There Should Be Flowers by Joshua Jennifer Espinoza

ISBN: 978-1-937865-73-3
100 pages
Release Date: August 15, 2016
Civil Coping Mechanisms

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Publicity Interest

“Espinoza’s debut is a searing interrogation of the world and the self at once. Here, the body is a fixation–as if to look away from it, even briefly, is to risk having it erased. As such, this is a book of unblinking human preservation, and how we trespass ourselves seeking safer spaces. “There is nothing I love more than an honest storm,” Espinoza writes. There Should Be Flowers is a storm to ravage and rearrange us from our crushing certainties. This book doesn’t need a blurb. It simply needs to be read.”

–Ocean Vuong, author of Night Sky with Exit Wounds

“Those who know too much about themselves to stay alive (but stay alive) will read Espinoza’s poems with eyes and mouths agape–palpably breathing this book–the fog and wind and womanhood and dark parking lots flying in and out. They may find the world around them sadly remains unchanged, but inside they are suddenly glad to be awake.”
–Melissa Broder, author of Last Sext and So Sad Today

“Praise the gods I’m alive to read the poems of Joshua Jennifer Espinoza. From the first time I read one of her poems I knew this witch was not to be fucked with. These poems transcribe survival so well without calling for some preachy or artificial joy, these poems and this poet survive and? What? Is that not enough? These poems are more than enough, Espinoza’s skills are tremendous. I’m floored by how she works and turns an image, how the music boarders dirge and punk. Punk dirge. Yes, that. I am in a mosh pit with these poems, flailing my body into other bodies, oscillating between contact and distance. These poems make me so happy and sad. I couldn’t stop texting lines to my friends, just so they see how well Espinoza has written down humanity, how excellent of a poet we have in our midst.”

–Danez Smith, author of [insert] boy

“It Is Important To Be Something: I think about this poem almost every single week since I first read it. I think about how Audre Lorde said that self-preservation is an act of resistance. I think about what it feels like to be alive when you don’t want to be. The work of Joshua Jennifer Espinoza is simple, it believes in awful and beautiful facts, its speaker is certain and clear. I wear my clothes. And in the documentation of an aching life, a new world is built, a new logic without tricks or borders. This book touched me deeply in its unflinching truth. This book reached a hand out of its pages, touched my shoulder and said, ‘Isn’t this weird?’ Heartache is a fact of life, this book says, and you are not your body. Utter permission. Beauty wherever you need to find it.”

–Morgan Parker, author of There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyonce

“Joshua Jennifer Espinoza is an absolutely essential poet. Her future-present has no cruel optimism to pawn nor peddle; rather, these existential poems offer new forms of tenderness and anxiety, of Eros and aloneness, each balanced against the pressures of annihilation that encircle the visionary words of this book. No poet I know embodies more beautifully the raw intimacy we all seek after than the one granted here in There Should Be Flowers. Open it and live again.”

–Adam Fitzgerald, author of George Washington