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  • Very few living writers write so achingly toward God as Kaveh Akbar . . . each of the poems in this collection finds its target

    Lauren Groff, Observer, *Books of the Year*
  • These are poems on the grand scale, staging dramas of cosmic light and dark

    David Wheatley, Guardian
  • Kaveh Akbar is the sorcerer's sorcerer, masterful in the way he wields language . . . Profound and singular, smart and sad and funny, but most of all truth's beauty and beauty's truth sung . . . We need Pilgrim Bell. We need Kaveh Akbar

    Tommy Orange, author of THERE THERE
  • A measured, quiet pondering of intense subjects and subjectivities... Pilgrim Bell insistently travels to necessary places, with regard to the intimacies of faith, the landscapes of empire and the performativity and honesty of poetry. The poems are deeply considered and show a contemplative maturation of Akbar's voice

    Khairani Barokka, Times Literary Supplement
  • What thrilled me most about this book was another commitment: the commitment to writing discomfort, or ugliness. Doing it well, and doing it without insisting upon beautification. Pilgrim Bell is a book that chooses honesty over beauty, which makes it a breathtaking text

    Hanif Abdurraqib, author of A LITTLE DEVIL IN AMERICA
  • Kaveh Akbar is truly a great writer, and his new collection Pilgrim Bell is a marvel. Like his previous work, it dazzles us. Akbar is an unlikely prophet - hilarious and irreverent and self-deprecating. Yet even nonbelievers will travel the circles of faith and hellscape, love and rebuke, through his captivating voice. He is incapable of setting down a line that's less than luminous. Pilgrim Bell is destined to become a classic

    Mary Karr
  • Working at and along the outer edges of language, Pilgrim Bell calls us to attention and to attend to that which poetry and prayer share, while simultaneously demanding that we tend to the political, the social, the erotic - all that is quotidian and human . . . In Pilgrim Bell, the poet Kaveh Akbar, 'God's incarnate spit in the mud,' takes us down to the ground, to the prosaic, the dismissed and overlooked, the better to talk to the great Silence, bearer of many names including that of God

    M. NourbeSe Philip
  • In this rich and moving collection, Akbar writes poems of contradiction and ambivalence centered on religious belief and ethnic and national identity. Evocative and polyphonic, surprising but never artificially shocking, Akbar's poems flit from the divine to the corporeal in the same breath . . . This impressive, thoughtful work shimmers with inventive syntax and spiritual profundity

    Publishers Weekly

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