Orlando White’s second book of poetry deals with the origins and power of the typographical sign.



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Additional information

Weight .45 lbs
Dimensions 8.2 × .5 × 7.5 in

*Winner of the San Francisco Poetry Center Book Award

LETTERRS is a book of poems that examines and interrogates language to its core, the shapes and sounds. In these poems Orlando White explores the origins and existence of letters, words, typography, the


Even if “objects / contribute for them,” as Orlando White notes, the letters of language constitute the signal human mark. It is by “letter conductivity” that we have inscribed a long history of ourselves. In combinations of ekphrasis, meditation, and imaginative play, Orlando opens his poetic field to the typographical sign. As a Diné of the Naaneesht’ézhi Tábaahí, he initiates a poetic trajectory in this, his second remarkable book, that cuts across the roots of what we call American culture when, for instance, he asks “how does a letter become another when its origin is lost?” LETTERRS is his complex ars poetica, a book of love poems to the grapheme and “its outbreak of silence.” But it is also a provocative and systemic reorientation of language toward ritual, toward “bone-shaped artifacts,” and the “notochord of thought.” In LETTERRS, Orlando White situates the word at the unsettled beginning of human dialogue with the world.

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ISBN: 9781937658359
paperback, 96 pages, 8 x 7 in
Publication Date: 2015

LETTERRS reminds its readers of its own physicality and binary existence as meaning-making art and physical object, just as humans work within their own body/soul dynamic. LETTERRS is a strange, complex work that breaks open our given contemporary understanding of written communication and forces its readers to reconceptualise language’s whole shebang.

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Orlando White is the author of Bone Light (2009). He holds a BFA from the Institute of American Indian Arts and an MFA from Brown University. He is a recipient …

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