Registers of Illuminated Villages
Tarfia Faizullah’s highly anticipated second collection, Registers of Illuminated Villages, extends and transforms her powerful accounts of violence, war, and loss into poems of many forms and voices—elegies, outcries, self-portraits, and larger-scale confrontations with discrimination, family, and memory. One poem steps down the page like a Slinky; another poem responds to makeup homework completed in the summer of a childhood accident; other poems punctuate the collection with dark meditations on dissociation, discipline, defiance, and destiny; and the near-title poem, “Register of Eliminated Villages,” suggests illuminated texts, one a Qur’an in which the speaker’s name might be found, and the other a register of 397 villages destroyed in northern Iraq. Faizullah, the author of the award-winning collection Seam, is an essential poet, whose work only grows more urgent, beautiful, and—even in its unsparing brutality—full of love.
Tarfia Faizullah is the author of Seam, winner of a VIDA Award and a Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award. She teaches at the University of Michigan and lives in Detroit.
Faizullah, Tarfia, "Registers of Illuminated Villages" (2018). Literary Arts Institute Lectures. 8.