Even the Saints Audition

Even the Saints Audition

by Raych Jackson


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In Even the Saints Audition Raych Jackson Reconditions her body and reclaims her church.

This empowering book of poems interrogates the relationship between blackness, shame, and what it is to live a life tied to the church. Rich with historical context and a deeply engaging personal narrative. This body of work is bursting with charm, wit, and pride, as it dances on the thin line between saint and sinner.

Includes poems such as "Period Rules", “A Wasted Ass Shave”, and "I Ask What 'Circumcision' Means in a Full Sunday School Class" that have been watched by millions online

Advance praise for Even the Saints Audition

This is an important and brave book, one that keeps me asking for more.

-Fatimah Asghar, Author of IF THEY COME FOR US / co-creator of BROWN GIRLS

Jackson rearranges the scripture of God until it is a machine that works for her. Her bible blesses the ones who roam.

-Kara Jackson, Author of BLOODSTONE / National Youth Poet Laureate

This work is a sinner’s diary, made of the secrets between pews, the notes beneath the hymns and the guilt writhing within desire.

-Toaster, Artist

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781943735624
Publisher: Button Poetry
Publication date: 09/24/2019
Series: Button Poetry
Pages: 96
Sales rank: 769,037
Product dimensions: 5.30(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.30(d)

About the Author

Rachel “Raych” Jackson is a writer, educator and performer. While teaching in Chicago Public Schools for five years, she competed on numerous national poetry teams and individual competitions. She is the 2017 NUPIC Champion and a 2017 Pink Door fellow. Rachel recently voiced 'DJ Raych' in the game Mad Verse City. In October 2018 her latest play, Emotions and Bots, premiered at the Woerdz Festival in Lucerne Switzerland. She co-created the monthly poetry show Big Kid Slam. Rachel’s work has been published by many—including Poetry Magazine, The Rumpus, and 29Rooms through Refinery29.

Table of Contents

On Job 1

Act 1

On Job 7

I ask "Where do children go when they die?" in Sunday School 8

I ask "What does circumcision mean?" in Sunday School 9

Praying in terror 11

Church Girl answers "what is sadness" 12

Come Thou Fount Hymn 14

A good saint worships & sacrifices 15

I thank the church for blessing my mother's womb 16

Touching 17

Wasted grooming 21

Church Girls sing for the congregation 22

Blue Ribbon 23

He'll forgive you again 24

I sleep next to after 25

Act 2

On Job 29

Even my nails hurt me 30

From the broken fingernail 31

Dragon 33

Granny's wall 34

An old photo 35

On Job 36

Church Girl defends her hair cut 37

Ode to the bald spots above my ears 38

I see my bully a decade later 39

For the black girl who doesn't know how to braid hair 40

Church Girl's first sinner friend 42

After church she gets high again 44

2015 46

Come Thou Fount Hymn 47

On Job 48

For Korah 49

I sleep next to after 50

Cut 51

For ginger ale 52

After church she gets high again 53

My father misspeaks 54

Jonah was trapped before he met the fish 55

My Tribute Hymn 57

Act 3

On Job 61

After church she gets high again 62

Church Girl raps to herself under the covers 63

It wasn't all bad, I barely ever have stage fright now 64

Thank you back parking lot 65

Church Girl learns to pray again 67

It is written! 70

Acknowledgements 73

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