Bury It, Sam Sax's urgent, thriving excavation of desire, is lit with imagery and purpose that surprises and jolts at every turn. Exuberant, wild, tightly knotted mesmerisms of discovery inhabit each poem in this seethe of hunger and sacred toll of toil. A vitalizing and necessary book of poems that dig hard and lift luminously.
- Tyehimba Jess (James Laughlin Award citation)
Madness is a wild, resolute book. An exposed, unbridled energy drives its emotional truths while virtuoso technique undergirds its formal and intellectual authority. This is a fine, otherworldly madness. This is an ardent, vulnerable madness. This is an astounding debut, Sam Sax is an astounding poet.
- Terrance Hayes
“Forgive my bluntness, but…Goddamn, Sam Sax can write some poems. Devastating, comic, inventive, weird, dangerous, smart as hell. I could talk about the diction sometimes glass and sometimes bouquet. Or the syntax jagged here, balletic there. Or the metaphors, good lord. But the bottom line is that when reading poems in A Guide to Undressing Your Monsters, one after the next, I kept saying to myself, probably twisting my face a little bit or squirming in my seat, “Goddamn, Sam Sax can write some poems.” ”
-Ross Gay, author of Bringing the Shovel Down
Sam Sax's poems are ravenous, intimate, and brutal. God is "a man with a dozen bleeding mouths" and "a boy drags his dead dog across the night sky" and "shadows sing." Tongued and loved, a butthole becomes a trumpet, a second mouth. His poems reject the given. His poems seek out new encounters between flesh and world, between language and memory. Bristling with stunning images and formally astute, his poems nurture and bruise.
- Eduardo C. Corral, author of Slow Lightning
Sam Sax's sad boy/detective uses the unholy sonnet in ways that would make Jarman marvel and sigh. The entirety of this volume destabilizes our ideas of what it means to write the coming of age novel, what it means to be undetectable. And Sax is forever fighting the fight of a poet who is made aware of his separation from the world by the fact that he is—in sorrow, sex, danger, or celebration—moored to all he sees because his seeing is a searchlight.
The sad boy / detective of this book is on the case of his biggest mystery yet: the strangeness of existence itself. Reading these cleverly serialized sonnets is like pressing your ear to a door full of wonders you're unsure you're prepared to inherit. The book enacts a powerful awakening. Sam Sax is a terrific emerging poet. Like a sleuth with a magnifying glass, you're going to want to follow him everywhere.