"One of the most exciting and visceral poets of his generation."-Tony Hoagland
"Look at homie on the beach picking shells in dress shoes," David Tomas Martinez writes in his raw, electrifying second collection. In his debut, Hustle, Martinez offered a kaleidoscopic coming-of-age narrative replete with teen shootings and car-jackings, uncertain forays into sex, and the ongoing violence of colonialism upon Latino communities in San Diego. Emerging from the fray, the poet is left to wonder: Who am I now? In Post Traumatic Hood Disorder, the speaker assembles a bricolage self-portrait from the fractures of the past. Sliding between scholarly diction and slangy vernacular, studded with references to Greek mythology and hip-hop, Martinez's poems showcase a versatility of language and a wild-hearted poetic energy that is thoughtful, vulnerable, and distinctly American.
David Tomas Martinez is a recipient of a 2017 NEA fellowship, the Pushcart Prize, the Verlaine Poetry Prize, a CantoMundo fellowship, and the Stanley P. Young Fellowship from Breadloaf. His debut collection of poetry, Hustle (2014, Sarabande Books) received the New England Book Festival's prize in poetry, the Devil's Kitchen Reading Award, and $10,000 as honorable mention from the Antonio Cisneros Del Moral Prize. His work has been published or is forthcoming in Poetry, Ploughshares, Tin House, Boston Review, Los Angeles Review of Books, Oxford American, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere. Martinez lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Publisher: Sarabande Books, Incorporated
Number of pages: 72
Weight: 159 g
Dimensions: 211 x 140 x 13 mm
CLMP 2019 Firecracker Award Finalist in Poetry
PEN America Los Angeles, "July Book Club Pick
The New York Times, "New & Noteworthy"
The American Poetry Review, Issue 47 No 1, Featured Poet
The Rumpus, "What to Read When You Want to Celebrate Poetry"
In the Margins Book Awards, 2019 Social Justice/ Advocacy Nominee
"Martinez follows his acclaimed debut, Hustle, with a series of lyrical riffs on American culture that juxtapose literary erudition and swaggering vernacular. . . . [T]hese poems reveal an ear honed on poetic tradition and hip-hop ('About suffering they were never wrong,/ the old rappers') and explore intersections of identity with strikingly musical results."
-Publishers Weekly, Star Review
"In his second collection, Martinez has fun with the high-low mash-up that characterizes so much poetry today - one poem here is called 'Footnoting Biggie Lyrics Like 'Why Christmas Missed Us'' - but he also includes tender love poems and searching personal reminiscences. "
-The New York Times, "New and Noteworthy"
"In Hustle (2014), his code-switching debut book of poetry, Martinez let loose with lyrics that brought the poet's street-smarts and book-smarts cascading together. In his second collection, Martinez's poetic voice is more assured and no less ambitious. . . A cynicism undercuts the collection's gravity, and Martinez builds a complex humor throughout, using deadpan wit and wordplay to deliver amusing observations. . . . In perfectly contrasting lyrics, Martinez blends echoes of pop culture with deeply felt evocations of masculinity and history, with nostalgia for Notorious B.I.G. and Nietzsche occupying the same headspace."
"[Martinez's] lines are sharp and musical, deftly split and carefully crafted. Flexible line breaks create layered poems that nod to multiple, simultaneous meanings. . . . Martinez's are poems to be experienced; they engage sight, sound, and meaning all at once. Martinez melds an urban background, a modernist's attention to precision, and a rapper's flow to form an irresistible collection of contemporary poetry."
". . .one of American poetry's authentic new voices."
-The San Francisco Chronicle
"The wild ostentation of late 20th- and early 21st-century America becomes the prism through which readers of David Tomas Martinez's Post Traumatic Hood Disorder. . . perceive might and right, ennui and love and solitude and the oceanic depths of history."
-America: The Jesuit Review
"I love this Post-Traumatic Hood Disorder where we break in between the fissures of a Cubist Piri Thomas, an elegant Oscar Z. Acosta, a Sartre with a hoodie, and a Nietzsche in the city of Danger. The line-break rhythms and scenic jump cuts are masterful and the raw and silky textures of places and mind spaces are radical and original. Maybe it's the sorrow, the suffering, the desolation that pulls me into this collection, in particular when it lingers as we are almost lured away by the 'cross hatched' finesse of the poems and speakers as a whole. Original to the bone, deep cuts, power punches and intimate portraits-truth art, truth word, a major voice. Ever seen a patched-up Ferrari engine race down Main Street without a body? Check this out. Brave Soul."
-Juan Felipe Herrera, Poet Laureate of the United States
"David Tomas Martinez offers us the America that is the music all his own. There is not a fake note in this orchestra. The highs give you the large, ever expanding breath of real opera music, and the lows leave you limping, moaning in hurt for days. For if this is the kind of poetry that takes no prisoners, it is also the kind that opens itself bravely, stands naked in front of the world, with nothing to defend itself with but its vocal music, the hum of its voice-and its piercing, honest, larger-than-life, feisty-and unforgettable-tone. Here it is, ladies and gentlemen: the truly American poetry."
"Martinez's coming-of age-poems are rife with the realities of life in the hood. Martinez uses slang, a unique blend of classical and hip-hop references, and his singular style to showcase his past mistakes and a future of possibility."
-In the Margins Book Awards Committee
"This is a book of urgencies, and Martinez rises old-school like Icarus, intent on leaving anguish, falseness and bullshit in his wake.... [Post Traumatic Hood Disorder] discloses both the miring and the possibilities that can be wrested from the crosshatch of family, class, masculinities, sex, mythology, race and culture. The mix is the central impulse of this book, and it is seamless. [Martinez] alludes to the 'old masters' and we soon realize he has become one as the line between Frost and Biggie blurs in ascension. Here he notes, 'Distance is my higher power.' By raw reflection and vertiginous attempts at flight, he means to ascend no matter the cost and so do we."
"In his first collection, Hustle, David Martinez showed himself to be one of the most exciting and visceral poets of his generation, with his dark, humorous, and culturally exploratory poems. His second collection, Post Traumatic Hood Disorder demonstrates how fiercely he has cultivated and driven his talent further. This new work is no less intense; Martinez's poems always feel written from the struggle of a soul trying to find a way to breathe and grow. Sex, race, class, and culture are twined together in the subject matter of his tumultuous poems, but it may be the verbal stylistics of Post Traumatic Hoodie Disorder that are their most memorable feature--stutter-stepping, careening and whiplashed, alternately elegant in rhetoric and defiantly idiomatic. Martinez's poems showcase a versatility of language and a wild-hearted poetic energy that is thoughtful, vulnerable and distinctly American."
"The act of balancing the past and the present is where the true brilliance of David Tomas Martinez's second book comes through. Throughout Post Traumatic Hood Disorder, the nebulous place that he holds through his own doubt and struggle, and the inability of others to fully see him, does give these poems a clear thread of 'PTHD,' to use the book's title in the way it seems to suggest. The flashbacks to the past, the crippling of memory, longing for what came before, loving now yet wanting to run from the present, and many other paradoxes make this collection a refusal to ignore what makes a person whole."