Join The Word for the
Denver Big Read
Join the city-wide celebration of Natalie Diaz's stunning work about love, loss, indigeneity, land, inheritance, basketball, family, beauty, and movement: Postcolonial Love Poem.
Pick up your free book, download an e-book, start a book club using our free discussion guides! Attend a performance, reading, film screening or other event between October 2023-April 2024 during the NEA Big Read in Denver!
Find all the details below and check back often as we update our events calendar and share more info.
Learn more about the NEA Big Read in Denver and get updates as we add more events and programming here.
Your Big Read Hub:
Check out study guides and other downloadable material for the NEA Big Reads book, Postcolonial Love Poem.
materiales en ingles y español
Come together to share your Big Read thoughts, photos, reflections, and expressions. We'll be curating your submissions so you can see how your community is engaging with Postcolonial Love Poem.
We want to see you and your book!
Add your story to the mix, tag your images with #NEABigRead #DenverReads
ABOUT POSTCOLONIAL LOVE POEM
Postcolonial Love Poem is an anthem of desire against erasure. Natalie Diaz’s brilliant second collection demands that every body carried in its pages—bodies of language, land, rivers, suffering brothers, enemies, and lovers—be touched and held as beloveds. Through these poems, the wounds inflicted by America onto an indigenous people are allowed to bloom pleasure and tenderness: “Let me call my anxiety, desire, then. / Let me call it, a garden.” In this new lyrical landscape, the bodies of indigenous, Latinx, black, and brown women are simultaneously the body politic and the body ecstatic. In claiming this autonomy of desire, language is pushed to its dark edges, the astonishing dunefields and forests where pleasure and love are both grief and joy, violence and sensuality.
Diaz defies the conditions from which she writes, a nation whose creation predicated the diminishment and ultimate erasure of bodies like hers and the people she loves: “I am doing my best to not become a museum / of myself. I am doing my best to breathe in and out. // I am begging: Let me be lonely but not invisible.” Postcolonial Love Poem unravels notions of American goodness and creates something more powerful than hope—a future is built, future being a matrix of the choices we make now, and in these poems, Diaz chooses love.
Pick up your free book at these locations:
To get our community reading together, we have 1,000 free copies of Postcolonial Love Poem available starting in October 2023. Once you've read your copy, we encourage you to share it with a friend!
Debido a envíos internacionales, la edición en español no estará disponible al inicio, pero actualizaremos este sitio tan pronto como lleguen.
(Due to International Shipping, the Spanish Language edition will not be available at the kickoff, but we will update this site as soon as they arrive.)
Location: Art from Ashes
address: 1310 W 10th Ave, Denver, CO 80204
Location: Art Students League
address: 200 Grant St, Denver, CO 80203
Location: Center for Visual Arts
address: 965 Santa Fe Dr, Denver, CO 80204
Location: Cleo Parker Robinson Dance
address: 119 Park Ave W, Denver, CO 80205
Location: Denver Arts & Venues
address: coming soon
Location: Denver Botanic Gardens
address: 1007 York St, Denver, CO 80206
Location: Denver Film - Sie Filmcenter
address: 2510 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80206
Location: Fiction Brewing
address: 7101 E Colfax Ave, Denver, CO 80220
Location: History Colorado
address: 1200 Broadway, Denver CO 80203
Location: Lighthouse Writers Workshop
address: 3844 York St, Denver, CO 80205
Location: Queer Asterisk
address: 1575 Franklin St, Denver, CO 80218
Location: RedLine Contemporary Arts
address: 2350 Arapahoe Street Denver, CO 80205
Location: Swansea Rec Center
address: 2650 E 49th Ave, Denver, CO 80216
More locations coming!
Location: Denver Public Library
1890 S Grove St, Denver, CO 80219
9755 E Girard Ave, Denver, CO 80231
12955 Albrook Dr, Denver, CO 80239
5171 W Dartmouth Ave, Denver, CO 80236
Green Valley Ranch
4856 Andes Ct, Denver, CO 80249
Our partners at Libro.fm are giving away 100 FREE Audiobook copies of Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz to Denver residents. To request your free copy, please complete this form.
Events & Programming Calendar
NEA Big Read Kickoff Party
Friday, October 6, 5:30 PM to 7:30 PM
Denver Botanic Gardens
Join us for a celebration launching the NEA Big Read! Pick up a free copy of Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz and enjoy live performances and readings, interactive activities, tours of the Sacred Earth garden, and much more for the whole family. It’s free! Light snacks and beverages will be available, and feel free to bring your own food. The Word, in partnership with Denver Arts & Venues and the Denver Public Library, Arts Midwest, History Colorado, and the National Endowment for the Arts invites you to join our city-wide book club, #NEABigRead #DenverReads, this fall!
More coming soon!
Check back regularly for new events and programs throughout the NEA Big Read
About our Denver NEA Big Read
The Word, in partnership with Denver Arts & Venues, Denver Public Library, and History Colorado, invites you to join us for #DenverReads this fall! As part of the NEA Big Read program, we’ll be hosting a citywide discussion based on Postcolonial Love Poem by Natalie Diaz, a collection of poems about love, family, desire, grief, displacement, fighting cultural erasure, and insisting upon a future.
The Word is one of 62 organizations nationwide selected to receive a 2023-2024 NEA Big Read grant. An initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with Arts Midwest, the NEA Big Read broadens our understanding of our world, our communities, and ourselves through the power of a shared reading experience.
“The choice of Postcolonial Love Poem addresses a timely need for the Denver-metro community. Denver is among the fastest growing metro-areas in the country, and this growth has affected its varied populations unevenly, creating fissures around topics of legacy, ownership, and trust.”
- Viniyanka Prasad, Co-Executive Director & Founder of The Word
Prompted by the diverse activities of the NEA Big Read, participants will thoughtfully explore the complex issues around land, love, inheritance, displacement, colonization, culture, family, erasure, and resistance. This will offer an opportunity for uplifting voices from communities impacted by growth and change of the city, while fostering dialog and centering moments of healing for the entire metro population. This work offers the opportunity to unearth and embrace shared histories, and possibility for the inevitable song of change to ring with connection.
Through the NEA Big Read, we aim to engage and connect our community as readers, writers, artists, thinkers, and creators.
“We want the people throughout our community to read and discuss the book, create their own responses, and to connect with each other around the themes in the book. Our goal is to invite community partners to join us in creatively engaging with Postcolonial Love Poem in thoughtful, intentional ways that allow the community to connect more deeply, and to let the reverberations of this project have a lasting impact on Denver.”
- Suzi Q. Smith, [margins.] Director at The Word
“We're proud to partner to bring NEA Big Read to Denver. The NEA Big Read initiative will connect our communities and spark conversations with the written word which is in direct alignment with Denver Public Library's mission and values.”
- Michelle Jeske, city librarian with Denver Public Library