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ISBN: 978-1-73443-774-4
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Categories Chapbooks, Nomadic, Poetry


Publication Date: January 2020


In June of 2023, Black Lawrence Press welcomed numerous existing and forthcoming Nomadic Press titles to our catalogue. XV was originally published by Nomadic.

Classroom guide and introduction written by author inside. These poems want to blame someone. When the waters are unsettled, who or what is responsible? XV by Zach Goldberg probes concepts of masculinity, love, and trauma through the lens of inheritance. The body is a vessel for history, but what do we do with history? Ignore it? Deny it? Revise it? Heal from it?


XV is a remarkable chapbook that tracks and detonates the triangulation of the body, the mind, & the world. With deft clarity of voice and vision, Zach Goldberg guides us through the failures and frailty of the body set against the unshakable fact of the human spirit. “There’s blood in the streets tonight, and some of it’s yours”–paterfamilias, memory, illness, & the divine, are all alive and vibrating inside this small and necessary book.
sam sax, author of Bury It and Madness

XV never shies away from one of the few universal truths in this world: the human body is a terrifying, fragile machine, and all of us are host and hostage to its terrifyingly fragile machinations. Throughout these poems, however, Zach Goldberg never fails to guide us not just through the fear, but to the love at its core. Whether this balancing act of love and fear is based in the body or the mind, family or self, he wields compassion with the precision of a scalpel, and gentleness exists not despite honesty, but because of it. As he says, “it’s never left my body, the blood we share / and the love I carry with it.” I’m very glad Goldberg’s heart was strong enough to resume its rhythm, and even stronger to carry the weight of these poems with grace.
Jaz Sufi, slam master of The Berkeley Poetry Slam

About the Author

Zach Goldberg

Zach Goldberg is a writer, educator, and arts administrator from Durham, NC. He is the author of XV (Nomadic Press, 2020) and a forthcoming full-length collection from Button Poetry. A former member of the 2018 and 2019 Berkeley Slam Teams, Zach is also a proud co-founder of BuckSlam MN, and his work has appeared in journals including AGNI, Pleiades, and RHINO. He lives on occupied Dakota land in Minneapolis, MN.

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