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Poetry. Fiction. Middle Eastern Studies. LGBTQIA Studies. Swinging from post-explosion Beirut to a Montreal balcony in summer, the verse and prose poems in THE GOOD ARABS ground the reader in place, language, and the body. Peeling and rinsing radishes. Dancing as a pre-teen to Nancy Ajram. Being drenched in stares on the city bus. The collection is an interlocking and rich offering of the speaker's communities, geographical surroundings both expansive and precise, and family both biological and chosen.
THE GOOD ARABS gifts the reader with insight into cycles and repetition in ourselves and our broken nations. This genre-defying collection maps Arab and trans identity through the immensity of experience felt in one body, the sorrow of citizens let down by their countries, and the garbage crisis in Lebanon. Ultimately, it shows how we might love amid dismay, adore the pungent and the ugly, and exist in our multiplicity across spaces.
Eli Tareq El Bechelany-Lynch is a queer Arab poet living in Tio'tia:ke, unceded Kanien'kehá:ka territory. Their work has appeared in The Best Canadian Poetry 2018 anthology, GUTS, Carte Blanche, the Shade Journal, The New Quarterly, Arc Poetry Magazine, and elsewhere. They were longlisted for the CBC poetry prize in 2019. You can find them on Instagram and Twitter @theonlyelitareq. Their first book, KNOT BODY, was published by Metatron Press in September 2020. Their second book, THE GOOD ARABS is forthcoming from Metonymy in 2021.Author City: MONTREAL, QC CAN