Poetry. African & African American Studies. Winner of the Silver Medal for the 2017 California Book Award in Poetry. BUCK STUDIES is a massive informational architecture of masteries and murders: tellings and re-tellings; legends, myths, sacred and profane narratives of race and Christs and media; pornos and pastorals of who-owns-who on what island and who gets to live in these paradises and who gets to die for them. Who gets to look and who gets to buy. Douglas Kearney addresses and redresses all the language that's got away, with diagrammatic and dramatic compositions on paper, in the air and in the ear."Lurking below the pure alchemy in Kearney's BUCK STUDIES is a language that constantly flirts with collapse. The combination of an out-of-joint lyric with a mille-feuille of text reveals the transformative subject of the black body quelled, contained, caricatured, and dismembered. Absurdity marries intellect here while a frenetic melancholy embraces the ceaseless nature of historical despair. And yet, we still encounter humor, perverse and sprung from chaos. BUCK STUDIES is a peek behind the curtain of a brilliant mind resigned to the fact that 'the torments must go on mustn't they for the tremble tremble tremble...' if nothing else."—Ruth Ellen Kocher
Douglas Kearney has published seven poetry collections, including SHO (Wave 2021), which was a finalist for the National Book Award, PEN Award, and the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award, and BUCK STUDIES (Fence Books, 2016), winner of the Theodore Roethke Memorial Poetry Award, the CLMP Firecracker Award for Poetry, and the California Book Award silver medal for poetry. M. NourbeSe Philip calls Kearney's collection of libretti, SOMEONE TOOK THEY TONGUES. (Subito, 2016), "a seismic, polyphonic mash-up." Kearney's MESS AND MESS AND (Noemi Press, 2015), was a Small Press Distribution Handpicked Selection that Publisher's Weekly called "an extraordinary book." He has received a Whiting Writer's Award, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Cy Twombly Award for Poetry, residencies/fellowships from Cave Canem, The Rauschenberg Foundation, and others. Kearney teaches Creative Writing at the University of Minnesota- Twin Cities and lives in St. Paul with his family.