On Thursday, September 14, 2023, the National Book Foundation announced their longlist of nominees across all categories. Tripas by Brandon Som, copublished by the Georgia Review and the University of Georgia Press, was included on the longlist for poetry.
Released in March of 2023, Tripas follows up Som’s award-winning debut with a book of poems built out of a multicultural, multigenerational childhood home, in which he celebrates his Chicana grandmother, who worked nights on the assembly line at Motorola, and his Chinese American father and grandparents, who ran the family corner store. Enacting a cómo se dice poetics, a dialogic poem-making that inventively listens to heritage languages and transcribes family memory, Som participates in a practice of mem(oir), placing each poem’s ear toward a confluence of history, labor, and languages, while also enacting a kind of “telephone” between cultures. Invested in the circuitry and circuitous routes of migration and labor, Som’s lyricism weaves together the narratives of his transnational communities, bringing to light what is overshadowed in the reckless transit of global capitalism and imagining a world otherwise—one attuned to the echo in the hecho, the oracle in the órale.
“American family elegy has rarely found such multilayered wordplay,” Stephanie Burt wrote in her review for the London Review of Books. “Lesser poets might treat such sonic effects as ornamentation, icing on the cake of the story they told. For Som they are the cake.”
Gerald Maa, Director and Editor of the Georgia Review, was elated upon hearing the announcement.
"We are excited for Brandon,” said Maa. “I'm thankful that we had the opportunity to publish this phenomenal book with the Press. I'm excited that this nomination will draw more and more people to Brandon's powerful poems."
The longlist of titles was chosen from 295 books that were submitted for the 2023 National Book Award for Poetry. The finalists will be announced on Tuesday, October 3, followed by the winners at the National Book Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, November 15, 2023.