"Ross Gay's eye lands upon wonder at every turn, bolstering my belief in the countless small miracles that surround us." --Tracy K. Smith, Pulitzer Prize winner and U.S. Poet Laureate
In The Book of Delights, one of today's most original literary voices offers up a genre-defying volume of lyric essays written over one tumultuous year. The first nonfiction book from award-winning poet Ross Gay is a record of the small joys we often overlook in our busy lives. Among Gay's funny, poetic, philosophical delights: a friend's unabashed use of air quotes, cradling a tomato seedling aboard an airplane, the silent nod of acknowledgment between the only two black people in a room. But Gay never dismisses the complexities, even the terrors, of living in America as a black man or the ecological and psychic violence of our consumer culture or the loss of those he loves. More than anything else, though, Gay celebrates the beauty of the natural world-his garden, the flowers peeking out of the sidewalk, the hypnotic movements of a praying mantis.
The Book of Delights is about our shared bonds, and the rewards that come from a life closely observed.