In her fourth collection of poetry, Lambda Literary Award-winning poet and writer Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha continues her excavation of working-class queer brown femme survivorhood and desire. Tonguebreaker is about surviving the unsurvivable: living through hate crimes, the suicides of queer kin, and the rise of fascism while falling in love and walking through your beloved’s Queens neighborhood. Building on her groundbreaking work in Bodymap, Tonguebreaker is an unmitigated force of disabled queer-of-color nature, narrating disabled femme-of-color moments on the pulloff of the 80 in West Oakland, the street, and the bed. Tonguebreaker dreams unafraid femme futures where we live&emdash;a ritual for our collective continued survival.
Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha is a queer disabled nonbinary femme writer and cultural worker of Burger/Tamil, Sri Lankan, and Irish/Roma ascent. She is the author of Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice, Dirty River: A Queer Femme of Color Dreaming Her Way Home, Bodymap, Love Cake, and Consensual Genocide, and is co-editor (with Ching-In Chen and Jai Dulani) of The Revolution Starts At Home: Confronting Intimate Violence in Activist Communities. A lead artist with the disability justice performance collective Sins Invalid, she teaches, performs and lectures across North America. Raised in Worcester, MA, she divides her time between T’karonto and South Seattle, rooted in rust belt resilience, diasporic aerial roots and dirty water.