It's all here, all the nuances of body and voice, as bold and sensitive poetic attitude. How flow became form then flow again, the creative-growth-process of living writing line breath before line break, a risk in every room. Tara Betts makes silence plea then whips some crazy and some natural on the confessional. Often sassy, often black-a-demic, her non-discriminating eye is never without a fully focused art-sense of self, community and nation. So many of the poems in Arc and Hue aim for the spirit level of insight, our need-some-more-saturation souls. No bragging, no cussin folks out or refried allegorical posturing, Arc and Hue respects the currency of creativity and the unbought lives it honors. --Thomas Sayers Ellis, The Maverick Room
Tara Betts deftly crafted stanzas are infused with a relentless lyricism and a Chi-town girl's sensibility. This debut collection solidifies her status as a defiant and singular voice, joyous indication of a fresh new direction in poetry. --Patricia Smith, National Book Award Winner and author of Blood Dazzler
The poems in Tara Betts's debut collection, Arc and Hue, are a montage of identity politics, sexuality, music, and experiential knowledge. The joy of reading these poems is that it's the knowledge--yes, even more than the music-- that makes these poems sing. Irrespective of how familiar the scene may seem on the surface, whether the focus is a reverie on relationships--some familial, some romantic--or a projection of a subjunctive future, the acute attention to detail and keen point of view guides Betts' work to conclusions that surprise and illuminate. --A. Van Jordan, author of Quantum Lyrics
With a Foreword by Afaa Michael Weaver. Poetry by Tara Betts, poet and instructor of Creative Writing at Rutgers University.