The 15 Best Books to Take to the Beach This June
Find your pool companion.
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Imagine Allen Ginsberg's "Howl"
littered with Morgan Parker's
pop cultural panache,
and you'll get Junk
, Tommy Pico's
brazen third book, a long-form breakup poem at once hilarious and harrowing.
The pages brim with mischievous couplets ("You can lead a man to Beyoncé,
but you can't make him think"; "I'm not judgmental I just don't like
anything you do"). Here, "junk" means everything from "broken
radios n hopeful cassettes" and "the sticky soda of my boy meat"
to "letting go of you." Pico, who is American Indian, blends personal
and political fulmination: "'Freedom' is such historical propaganda
Indigenous / and black lives remind American exceptionalism that slavery, /
theft, and genocide are its founding institutions." This he follows with a
directive to his lover: "Buy me a donut / and take me to a museum."
— Michelle Hart